Category Archives: 2017

Raise money for the Choir through Give as You Live

Many of you will have noticed that on this web-site’s Home page there is a new button at the bottom of the page.

If you would like to donate to Caldicot Male Voice Choir, please click here

This will allow you to make a donation directly to Caldicot Male Voice Choir by clicking on it.  It will take you directly to the ‘Give As You Live’ donation page on their website where you can make your donation and sign up for gift aid if you are a taxpayer.

The Choir is a registered charity and receives no income from other sources. It relies on its own fund-raising, sponsorship and donations to keep going and provides not only a wonderful hobby for its members but brings the culture of Welsh Male Voice Singing to the many and in so doing also raises many thousands of pounds for other charities and good causes.

I don’t know how many of you shop on-line but the site gives you the option of signing up so that if you do buy on line, you can click on the link below, choose from over 4200 shops including Amazon, E-bay, John Lewis, Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Screw Fix etc. and this takes you directly to your account on your chosen shop.  You then make your purchase as normal through debit card, credit card or Pay-pal.  You can also search for car, house insurance and utility providers. A percentage of the value of your purchase will then be donated to the choir.  It does not cost you or the choir a penny to make it happen.  How does it pay for itself?  The web site obtains a commission from each of the retailers not from the choir or yourselves.  It really is very easy and there’s no risk.

To get to the Give as You Live website web-site……Click here…….GIVE AS YOU LIVE

I have reproduced the donation button on this post so give it a go.  You’ve got nothing to lose and the choir has a lot to gain to carry on with its concert and charity work.

If you would like to donate to Caldicot Male Voice Choir, please click here

Choir returns to All Saint’s Church in Long Ashton Bristol

Photographs by Colleen Gauntlett.  Left click on images to enlarge

 

Unlike our last visit to Long Ashton in a torrential downpour, the evening was a cold but dry Friday night on November 10th as the Choir of about 60 members once again made its way over the Severn Bridge and on to All Saints Church at Long Ashton, Bristol to support the Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal and Church Restoration funds.  Every time we visit this Church it is always to a full house and again this time we were not disappointed.

Conducted by Siân Hatton and Shirley-Anne James, accompanied by John Nicholson and Stephen Berry,  the choir presented a full programme of a wide range of music from Welsh favourites, ‘Rachie’,’ Cwm Rhondda’, ‘Anfonaf Angel’ and ‘Bugeilio’r Gwenith Gwyn’ to fitting ‘Mansions of the Lord’ from the film ‘We are Soldiers’, ‘He’, ‘A Miner’s Song’, ‘Mansions of the Lord’ and ‘There is No Death’.  The Choir was pleased to present ‘Ride the Chariot’ with soloists Siân Hatton and David Gould.  Included also were the epic ‘Comrades in Arms’, ”When I survey the wond’rous cross’ to the tune Morte Criste, ‘With a Voice of Singing,’ ‘Shenandoah,’ and finalising with ‘O Gymru’, extolling the virtues of Wales with soloist Tom Hole.

The Choir were once again joined in the concert by about 50 of the talented young children of the local Downs School who presented a wide range of musical styles from a Brass ensemble playing ‘Bob the Builder’ and ‘Batman’. a clarinet solo of an Adagio by Albinoni, to delightful Choral pieces including ‘Nearer my God to Thee’ and a wonderful arrangement of When you Believe’.  Further items included a saxophone duet of ‘It Don’t Mean a thing, a trumpet solo of Pavane-Faure and a Guitar Solo of Andantino by Carulli.  Further choral items included ‘In Dreams’ and a foot tapping ‘Happy’ by Pharell Williams. Their items were conducted by Mark Weaver and choir director Marysia Gorska-Saj and accompanied once again by Susan Gregory.

Not to make a break from tradition, following the concert the Choir and supporters made their way through the rain to the Bowling Club at Long Ashton for a welcome warm reception, refreshments and again, a hearty afterglow to the delight of the patrons.

Giant Screen Rugby is coming back to the Hall

Giant Screen Rugby is coming back to Caldicot Choir Hall with the screening of all of Wales’ Autumn Internationals beginning with the Australia match on November 11th. Will Gatland’s new look Welsh team finally beat the Aussies? Let’s hope so. The poster says it all.

With a giant 3 metre screen, superb sound, refreshments, flags and lighting effects it will be a great atmosphere.
This screening will be followed up with the games against Georgia (18th November), New Zealand (25th November and South Africa (2nd December) and perhaps others.

The 6 Nations showings were a huge success last February and March and this will be just a good.

 

Choristers practice again for Royal Albert Hall

 

About 55 Caldicot choristers gave up their Sunday afternoon to make the short journey to Rogerstone Primary School where they were put through their paces of the songs they will singin the programme at the Royal Albert Hall in May next year.

Conducted, instructed, cajoled, persuaded and even coerced into getting it right by conductor Dr. Alwyn Humphreys, the choirs from all over Gwent enthusiastically sang their parts from many old and new favourites including Rachie, Gwahoddiad, Tangnefeddwyr, Shenandoah and even Alexander;’s Ragtime Band.  Not quite up to the required standard yet but there is seven months to go and we’ll get there for a great night in London.  None of us can wait but there’s still a lot of work to do, but well done for a great effort and fabulous sound.

Choristers step out at Equestrian Dressage Event

On a lighter note from recent posts the Choir was happy to sing at the David Broome Events Centre (Cricklands) near Caldicot to entertain the participants and organisers of the British Home International Equestrian Dressage Competition which invites teams form all over the British Isles to compete. At the welcoming party, while the participants were eating a meal of chips and chilli and a variety of Welsh traditional offerings of cawl and welshcakes, the Choir, conducted by Sian Hatton and accompanied by John Nicholson and Stephen Berry performed with a variety of songs from its repertoire such as Rachie, Llef, Somewhere Out There, Troyte’s Chant, O Gymru, A Miner’s Song, Aus der Traube in die Tonne and Cwm Rhondda.

The evening was made a little more special in that it was top tenor Paul Priest’s and bottom bass Colin Hart’s first concert.  I’m sure there will be many more.

After the meal the choir continued to entertain the crowds with a period of ‘Afterglow’ singing, led by Dai Gould to a delighted audience which often joined in with Fields of Athenry, My Grandfather’s Clock, The Gypsy and even Sospan Fach.

From the many comments and thanks it was clear that the audience, many of whom had never experienced the singing of Welsh Male Voice Choir close up, were thrilled and excited with our performance. This is why we do it, folks.

Sad loss of Bass Chorister Roy Jones

Once again and tragically we are informed of the passing of another much loved chorister and we regret to inform you that the latest loss is of Roy Jones who passed away on 5th October after a long spell of ill health.
 
A quiet, reserved but thoughtful and caring man, Roy was a highly respected and well liked bass chorister. His wife, Diane found a diary which confirmed that he joined the choir in 1977. Forty years continuous membership is an attestation of his dedication, loyalty and unbounded enthusiasm for the choir. As a natural Welsh speaker, Roy was a huge asset in helping the choir with ensuring that our Welsh diction and pronunciation maintained a very high standard.
An ex train driver he had also worked at Llanwern steelworks and Sudbrook pumping station. Among his many particular friends his loss will be most felt by ex Railwaymen and work colleagues in the choir, not least Wyn Goodwin, Harry Giblin and John Wyson.
 
Among his many proud moments in the choir, Roy was delighted to read the poem ‘Mae’r Rhain yn Allaf Addewid’ (These I can Promise) in Welsh at the train wedding in Cheltenham of chorister Graham (Spike) Hughes to Nina in 2013.
 
A past hobby had been working as a volunteer at Coleford helping to rebuild steam trains and he was well known locally as a gifted maker of walking sticks, many provided to other choristers.
 
The Choir is pleased that it was able to present Roy with a greatly deserved Lifetime Achievement Award last April as an attestation of his wonderful dedicated service to the Choir. Roy is quoted as saying ‘I really didn’t expect this, it’s such an honour and I am determined to get back to singing with you soon’. Sadly, it was not to be.
 
Our heartfelt sorrow and condolences go out to Diane and all Roy’s friends and family at their loss. Hwyl fawr am y tro, annwyl ffrind, goodbye for now, dear friend. RIP. You will be long remembered with deep affection, this we can promise.

Another ex Chorister Sadly Passes Away

 

It seems that we are tragically this year often receiving the news that a chorister has passed away at short notice and to add to those who’ve sadly left us we are saddened to learn of the death of former Baritone Aldwyn Caswell on Thursday 28th September.

86 year old Aldwyn retired from the choir about five years ago due to failing health after many long years, joining soon after the choir was formed in 1963.  Although taking a few breaks in his service, he nevertheless gave close on forty years contribution to the Choir.  Aldwyn was a former chairman between 1992 and 1996 and a long standing committee member.  He was until recently a Trustee of the Choir, a post he had held since being one of the co signatory’s of the Choir Hall lease in 1996.

It is due to the service that Aldwyn and many others like him have given that makes our Choir a wonderful organisation of which we can all be proud.

The funeral service for Aldwyn will take place at Caldicot Methodist Church on 11th October at 1-30 pm.  The Choir is privileged to be invited to sing at the Service as a tribute to Aldwyn’s memory and will once again sing Eli Jenkins’ Prayer and Speed Your Journey.  Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to his family and friends at this sad time.  Rest in Peace.

The photograph was taken at Catbrook Memorial Hall in 2013.

 

Choir Says Goodbye to Chorister Malcolm Reed

 

 

It was a measure of the high esteem felt for Malcolm, both in the Choir and in the Caldicot Community that there was standing room only at his Funeral Service on Tuesday 26th September at Caldicot Methodist Church..  Amongst the congregation over sixty choristers were privileged and proud to pay tribute to Malcolm by singing, at his family’s request Eli Jenkins’ Prayer (Troyte’s Chant)  during the service and Speed Your Journey from Verdi’s opera, Nabucco as the mourners left the Church. So many were present that this had to be sung twice.  Both songs were conducted by Shirley Anne James and accompanied by Stephen Berry.  The songs were also sung by the Choir at Malcom’s late wife Claudia’s funeral in 2011.

The Service, conducted by Rev. Preben Andersen opened with a recording of ‘Over the Rainbow’ sung by the late Eva Cassidy and included the hymns ‘The Old Rugged Cross’ and ‘How Great Thou Art’.  It also included a moving and brave tribute to Malcolm’s life from his grand daughter Natalie. Our prayers, thoughts and condolences go out to his family and friends at this sad moment.

The photograph above was taken at Cardiff Castle in 2012 when the Choir ironically sang for Directors of Tata Steel who were there to discuss the possible closure of Llanwern steelworks where Malcolm and so many other Choristers worked for many years..

Choir to Hold a Quiz Night for Charity

As the poster says, as part of its effort to raise funds for the Severn View Without Doors project, Jayne Stallard, wife of chorister Rob Stallard is hosting a Quiz Night on October 20th at the Choir Hall.  The charity is the choir’s nominated charity for this year and already a large amount has been raised by the Cycle club and Golf Society.  The aim is to pride sufficient money to pay for three outbuildings, including a gazebo and potting shed for a sensory garden in Chepstow to help sufferers of dementia and related illnesses.  Please pass the word around and get as many teams to come as possible.