Saturday 13 October 2018
The choir tour of the UK had been building to this day – the Australian Welsh Male Choir would join 15 other choirs to form a massed choir to sing at the Royal Albert Hall. After all the hard work and cramming I was ready as was my fellow choir members.
The day would prove to be a long one! We gathered at the RAH at 11.45am and were escorted – choir-by-choir up the many flights of stairs to our section of the top gallery which would be our ‘green room/changing room/waiting area.’ After a lot of sorting out and dry runs – we were marched to our door and led on stage, at 1pm! Facing the stage – our section of Baritones from the AWMC are on the right and three tiers up!
We rehearse for about 3 hours till about 4ish, when we are escorted off stage and marched to the Imperial College next door for an early dinner. Well, it takes a good hour and a half to get 800 or so men fed, and we are marched back to the RAH by about 6pm. We are on stage by 6.45pm and the concert starts at 7pm. On stage we are accompanied by the members of the Royal Welsh Guard Military Band. They are fantastic! High-lights for me of the concert are getting through the 7 difficult Welsh pieces with confidence; including singing ‘Llan Owen’ and ‘Gwinllan a Roddwyd I’m Gofal.’ (look up on you tube – versions of these beautiful but difficult songs to sing!) I especially enjoy listening to the band. Our MD Tom and accompanist Michelle conducted and played piano for the singing of the National Anthem – an honour for them (and us also!)
The concert finished at 9.30pm and it was nearly 11pm by the time we got back to our hotel and into the bar! Given that four other choirs were staying at the same hotel – it proved to be a noisy and glorious place to be as we sing and drink in celebration of a wonderful occasion. I call it a day around 1am and collapse into my bed exhausted. I can’t believe that it’s all over and tomorrow I will be flying back home after nearly seven weeks on the road.
I thank everyone who has been following my deeds via this blog. This entry will be the last for a while. But stay tuned – you never know!