The latest On Song column from the Carmarthen Journal and the Llanelli Star

The latest On Song column from the Carmarthen Journal and the Llanelli Star, by Robert Lloyd.

The Russians are coming!
To Carmarthen, in fact!
The internationally-acclaimed LYRA Russian Vocal Ensemble will be performing at St Peter’s Church, Carmarthen, on Friday, May 12 (7pm).
Tickets are £10 on the door and there are interval refreshments available at £2.50.
LYRA are from St. Petersburg, Russia.
The singing group consists of four members that have been educated either as opera singers or choir conductors in St. Petersburg Conservatory.
The four are -
Born in St Petersburg. Graduated from the St. Petersburg conservatory. Won International competition of Sacred Music in Roma, Italy in 1995 as the conductor of a chamber choir "SingerBridge". Works as a choir master in St. Peter’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg. Act as an active composer too.
Born in the Karelian ASSR Byelomorsk. Graduated from the State Conservatory in Saint-Petersburg. Actively touring musician. Well-known in St Petersburg as a jazz-singer.
Born in St. Petersburg. Graduated from the City Academy of Culture. Actively touring musician. Well-known in St Petersburg as a Baroque solo-singer.
Born in Great Novgorod. Studied in State Conservatory of St. Petersburg as a solo singer. Actively touring musician. Well-known in St Petersburg as a singer and a vocal trainer.
The ensemble's mixed programme usually consists of two parts.
In the first part, the spotlight is on the sacred music of the Russian Orthodox Church.
It contains pieces from famous composers like Bortnianski, Tchaikovsky, Tchesnokov, Rachmaninov, Gretchaninov. Other composers, not very well-known out of Russia, are also featured.
In the second part of the concert, the ensemble sings Russian folk songs: comic, lyric, dancing and love songs.
Website -
The busy ladies of The Phil Harmonics have a special charity fundraising night coming up this summer.
They will be performing at the Stradey Park Hotel, Llanelli, on Friday, June 9, in aid of the Ty Bryngwyn Hospice Fund.
Tickets are £25 and include a two-course meal and other entertainment from 'Friends' of The Phil Harmonics.
Tickets are available from Phil Harmonics members of through their Facebook page.
Rock and pop choir the Phil Harmonics have made their entrance onto the Llanelli music scene gradually over the last two years.
The group was set up by Sarah Mair Richards, Phil Thomas and Pauline Yudowitz.
In 2016 they held a charity evening which helped raise more than £1,600 for Prince Philip Hospital Breast Care Unit in Llanelli and a maternity hospital in Uganda.
Choir rehearsals are at The Stradey Park Hotel and the choir members are grateful for the hotel’s continuing support.
The choir is for 18 - 80 year olds who want to be part of a very exciting group who are very different from your usual choirs, very up-beat and fun.
They sing some of the classics and modern pop/rock.
They have their own instrumental band who accompany them at concerts.
Anyone interested in attending the choirs rehearsals or joining can contact - Pauline Yudowitz 07706796677 email
The choir have a Facebook page which can be found by searching for ‘The Phil Harmonics’ or on the following link -
Other events -
Ffwrnes will see the Clare Hammond Piano Recital on April 29.
Winner of the Royal Philharmonic Society’s ‘Young Artist Award’, pianist Clare Hammond gives a recital that warrants her “reputation for brilliantly imaginative concert programmes” (BBC Music Magazine).
Join her in exploring an enriching, inspiring music experience by Beethoven, Debussy, Fauré and Stravinsky alongside gems by Dutilleux, Jacquet de la Guerre and Kim Ashton.
May 4, at Ffwrnes, sees SnakeStrings.
This is a ground-breaking collaboration between sax maestro Snake Davis and an outstanding British string quartet, featuring peerless sax melody and classical strings in a fresh and innovative crossover of classical, pop, soul and jazz.
Acknowledged as one of the UK’s foremost saxophonists, the go-to guy for session work with the likes of Sir Paul McCartney, M-People and The Eurythmics, Snake Davis explores the emotive and uplifting registers of tenor, alto and soprano sax, shakuhachi and wood flute, in a glorious classical fusion.
Together, SnakeStrings bring a performance which is powerful, moving, and a delight to the senses.
The Last Night of the Proms 2017 takes place at Ffwrnes on June 24.
It’s a case of get your flags ready!
Join the 250-plus massed voices and musicians starring the massed choirs of Hywel Girls’ Choir and Hywel Boy Singers, Angelicus Chorale, Morriston RFC Choir , Llanelli Choral Society, British Sinfonietta, all under the legendary baton of John Hywel Williams MBE, for Wales’ exciting flag-waving extravaganza Last Night of the Proms.

Robert Lloyd works as a media consultant –
If you have any news about the choral scene in Llanelli, the please contact him on 07777 683637 or email


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