Friday, May 13, 2011

Musical Anglesey

Anglesey has a population of approximately 67,000 people.   Before settling here we lived in a town of 200,000 people.   Yet here there is a surfeit of music and culture.    The former town does not possess such a pool of musical talent.  Tonight my wife and I were treated to an evening of barber shop singing by a group of mainly elderly women who just loved singing together.

It was an event organised by a friend who is a worshipper at St Eilian's church, Llaneilian, in whose parish our village of Penysarn falls.   The church itself has a wonderful history of over 500 years, as I can testify.   The enthusiastiv church warden, Roy, who showed me round took me into St Eilian's sanctuary, up on the Rood screen loft and even the bell tower.

But to get back to the singers, they were a joy to hear.   It's not often you get to hear an all women group singing Barber Shop.   The event was held in the nearby WI hall which has recently been renovated and is, itself, a rare example of a wholly owned WI hall.   I even have a stake in the renovation work as I dismantled the sliding door to the toilet and installed a new door & frame.

In previous years I have attended Christmas concerts by Cor Bro Dyfnan, a choir formed in Benllech some years ago.   They have an enormous pool of musical talent supported by Carys Eleri, a woman with a beautiful soprano voice.   When she sings O Holy Night you could cry!   All over the island you can find groups of musicians specialising in their own brand of music.

Last evening I attended the licensing service for the new vicar of Amlwch and experienced Welsh hymn singing that was, as our American cousins say, awesome.   I thought the roof would lift off!   Just another example of the Welsh involvement in music. 

It is such a privilege to live on this remarkable island.


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