Chairman’s Message 2017

Dear Festival Goers,
We had a very successful 2016 festival and were very proud to welcome the 2016 BBC Young Musician of the Year, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, a 17 year old cellist. His concert was a sell-out event.
We presented an exciting and varied programme with the return of some old favourites such as the Pint Size Plays and many new items as well.
The festival would never be complete without choirs and in contrast to the classical oratorio we had the ever-popular Tenby Male Choir which has performed in every festival since it started in 1992.
The afternoon talks have always prove very popular and the enticement of a home-made tea is an added incentive. Jo Hammond gave a fascinating and highly entertaining talk about Joséphine Baker an exotic dancer from the twenties and thirties infamous for dancing in a skirt made of bananas and not much else. The audience was treated to a movie show of some of her dancing. Popular local artist Graham Hadlow gave his workshop on how to paint offering many useful tips. George Hancock made us all think with a very philosophical talk on Evolution and there were other talks from one on the History of Flying Boats in Pembroke Dock to another on the Sinking of the Laconia and the extra-marital affairs of Augustus John. Truly all life is in our talks! Also Robert Smith and Dr. Kanneh-Mason presented a talk about Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes followed by a screening of the film “Sylvia” about the life of the poet.
Another regular feature of the festival is a recital given by the Gregynog Young Musician of the Year. These young musicians are talented beyond their years and are drawn from all over the country; in line with last year the overall winner and two winners of their section took part in an afternoon concert on Saturday 1st October.
We also had the Oriel Duo who played piano and violin on Wednesday evening in a superb recital.
This year our play was, “Shakespeare Ladies’ Club” brought to you by Alison Neil. We couldn’t let the Shakespeare anniversary go by unmarked.

We had a fantastic finale to end the week long festival –  “A Night of Romantic Opera” when Swansea City Opera Company gave a concert of favourite arias and duets from famous operas by Mozart, Verdi, Puccini and Bizet.
We look forward to seeing you all in September 2017.

Rosemary Rhys Davies, Chairman