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The North American Welsh Choir Celebrates its Fifth Anniversary in the Big Apple
by Melissa Campbell for Vocal Area Network
Posted February 13, 2003

North American Welsh Choir logoChoristers from across the continent will convene in New York on Saturday, March 1 and Sunday, March 2  to celebrate the fifth anniversary of The North American Welsh Choir, a community choir with a continental presence that seeks to reflect the North-American Welsh experience through music and song. Founded in 1998 by Mari Morgan, the group has a roster of over 100 choristers from 26 states and three Canadian provinces. Choristers include the descendants of Welsh immigrants, expatriates and those who feel connected with the music and the community that is the North American Welsh Choir.

The festivities will commence on Saturday afternoon, March 1, when the choir presents a celebratory concert at historic Trinity Church, Broadway at Wall Street. Free and open to the public, the concert will take place from 1:30 to 3:30 PM. The choir's program seeks to connect its audience through a musical genre that spans both centuries and continents. Playing both old and new Welsh favorites, the choir also has commissioned a series of works from American and Canadian composers and Welsh writers. Poet Carolyn Maddux of Shelton, Washington and composer Victor Davies of Toronto will be in attendance at the performance.

Following the concert, the choir's new documentary, The North American Welsh Choir - A New Tradition In Wales, will have its official premiere screening at the Tribeca Film Center, 375 Greenwich Street, a short walk from Trinity Church. The documentary tells the group's unique story through the lens of the choir's 2002 concert tour to Wales, their first international concert series. A three-minute promo of the documentary can be viewed at www.nawr.com/corcymry/pressroom/. (Note that seating at the screening is limited. Interested media representatives are encouraged to reserve seating in advance by contacting Melissa Campbell at mdcampbellpr@yahoo.com.) The film's Emmy-award winning production team consists of producer/editor Paul L. Evans of the Sante Fe Motion Picture Company, director/writer J. Chris Schueler of Christopher Productions and production coordinator Margo O. Bruton.

The celebration moves across the East River to Brooklyn on Sunday morning, March 2. The choir will sing the Orthodox liturgy in Welsh at St. Cyril's of Turau Orthodox Cathedral. The Very Reverend Archimandrite Father Deiniol, who hosted the choir last summer at his church in Blaenau Ffestiniog, Wales, will join the choir both singing and co-celebrating at the 10:00 AM service.

The weekend's festivities coincide with St. David's Day, traditionally celebrated on March 1 to honor the patron saint of Wales. In honor of the holiday, the Empire State Building will be lit in red, white and green, the colors of the Welsh flag. The Welsh community in New York will also help the choir celebrate its anniversary. On Friday, February 28, the St. David's Society of New York holds its annual banquet at The Yale Club at which North American Welsh Choir members from the Mid-Atlantic region will sing a selection of songs to provide a taste of the weekend's activities. The Welsh Church at Rutgers Presbyterian, Eglwys y Cymry, joins in the celebration on Sunday, March 9, when Tad Deiniol will be the guest minister at the annual St. David's Day service.

As they unite past with present, the far-flung members of the choir keep connected using their web site. The communications hub for the choir, www.nawr.com/corcymry, holds regional rehearsal and concert schedules, practice song tracks, lessons in Welsh pronunciation and "community" news. Drawing on a rich cultural heritage and tradition, the choir strives to create a new musical genre reflecting what it means to be both Welsh and North American. Speaking about the choir, the Rt. Hon. Rhodri Morgan, First Minister of Wales, said "You are true ambassadors for Wales in North America and ambassadors for North America in Wales."

For more information about the choir, contact Melissa Campbell or visit the choir's web site at www.nawr.com/corcymry.

Melissa Campbell, a New Jersey-based public relations professional, serves as the publicist for the North American Welsh Choir. This is her first article for Vocal Area Network.

Content Contact: Melissa Campbell.
Revision Date: January 16, 2003.
Technical Contact: Steve Friedman.

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