Leader Report of the Christmas 1970 musical events
Grammar boys’ carols
THIS YEAR again a Christmas service of worship was held at Carmel Chapel, Trecynon, by the pupils of Aberdare Boys’ Grammar School.
The organist was Rhidian Jones (Form V), who recently passed a Grade Eight Associated Board Piano examination with distinction, and Mr. J. Gethin Evans, B.A., L.R.A.M., A.T.C.L. (music master), was responsible for the choral and instrumental contributions.
A recorder-trio arrangement of a popular Christmas carol was played by Peter Avery, Anthony Treasure and Stephen Adams, and immediately followed by Rhidian Jones’s presentation of an organ prelude by Buxtehude.
Pupils’ relatives and friends of the school were then welcomed to join in the service by Mr. J. Warren B.A., M.Sc. (headmaster).
Christmas carols were sung by the large congregation during a service which also contained- readings in both English and Welsh, a variety at musical items, and a brief explanation by the Rev. R. Ifor Parry, M.A. (head of the Scripture department) of the significance of the birth of Jesus in the stable of an inn.
The following boys read passages from the Bible: Gareth Hughes (form one), Graham Jones and Ian Rossol (form three), Wyn Evans (form four), John Bridges (form five), Rhodri Humphreys (form six), and Alun Larrimore (form six), head prefect.
Form one boys sang three Welsh carols and provided an antiphonal effect to the singing by Mark Mitchelmore (form three), treble soloist, of the English carol “A Boy was born in Bethlehem.”
Four-part recorder arrangements of three well-known carols were presented by the following boys from forms two and three: Gwilym Rippon, Szakal and Gareth Key (descant recorders), Ian Ellison (first treble recorder), Anthony Treasure and Stephen Adams (second treble recorders), and Peter Avery (tenor recorder).
Noel Bevan (form six), who led the congregational singing, sang an arrangement for two baritone voices of a Hungarian Carol, “Angels in Heaven,” along with Roland Williams (form six), to woodwind and brass instrumental accompaniment.
After Mr. Parry’s address, the headmaster, Mr. Warren, made an appeal for contributions towards the Aberdare Council Chairman’s Christmas Fund.
A collection of over £10 was made during the singing of the last congregational carol.
Concerts at hostels for aged
MR. GETHIN EVANS (music master) and a group of Aberdare Grammar Schoolboys entertained residents at Measyffynnon, Aberaman, during the Christmas period.
A similar concert was also given later the same day at Tegfan, Trecynon.
Two-part descant recorder arrangements of four carols were played by Peter Avery, Anthony Treasure and Stephen Adams. Another selection of carols for four-part recorder group was played by the following boys: Gwilym Rippon, Karl Szakal, Gareth Key (descant), Ian Ellison (first treble), Stephen Adams and Anthony Treasure (second treble), Peter Avery (tenor recorder).
A wind-band was also in attendance. This included
Gwilym Rippon (flute), Anthony Treasure (oboe), Stephen Adams (first clarinet), Karl Szakal (second clarinet); Ian Ellison (third clarinet), Peter Avery (bassoon), Bruce Morgan (trumpet), Gareth Key (trombone and trumpet), Pauline and Sheila Cochlin (Aberdare Girls’ Grammar School), percussion. The band was conducted by Mr. Cyril Lloyd, former pupil of the Boys’ School and now a first- year Bangor University College of Wales, B.Mus. student.
Martin Morgan (form four), recited a poem about Christmas and a sonnet by Keats. A two-part arrangement of the popular solo “The Holy City,” was played by Peter Avery (bassoon)
and Gareth Key (trombone). Nigel Murray (form four) presented a serenade by Haydn for solo violin. Noel Bevan and Roland Williams (form six) sang a Christmas carol arranged for two solo voices, and Roland Williams also played carols on an electronic instrument he himself had constructed.
John Canter (form six) played a Nocturne and a Gavotte on the violin, and Mark Mitchelmore (form three) sang an English carol, “Art Thou Troubled” (Handel) to Welsh words, and “How Beautiful Are Thy Feet,” from Handel’s “Messiah.”
Noel Bevan (form six), and Mr. Gethin Evans provided the various piano accompaniments.
At both Maesyffynon and Tegfan the boys were received by a small but most appreciative audience.