NEWS AND RECENT EVENTS


'Yr Alarch' for solo soprano or baritone has now been issued on two separate CDs:  Elin Manahan Thomas sings it on the newly-released Taliesin's Songbook (see below) while Paul Caray Jones is the soloist on Song/Lied/Cân, issued by Tŷ Cerdd in 2020.  Very different, but each brilliant in its own way!  

'Love bade me welcome', Rhian's setting of George Herbert's poem, was sung by New College Choir at Evensong on Sunday, 6th June. Unfortunately the video podcast was truncated; this, the choir, in a fine gesture, decided to sing the piece on the following Sunday (13th June) too.  This is now available at www.youtube.com/watch?v=ODiu6EN5SP8 (at c. 42'40")

The Tailleferre Ensemble's online living room concert on 29th May is now on Youtube: in the concert Penelope Smith and Nicola Hands premiered Rhian's 'Little Duos' for oboe and cor anglais.. Previously, the Ensemble placed the trio, Redlands Suite online, while Nicola Hands included Rhian's transcription of Salve Nos for oboe d'amore in her recent online recital too  .

In another online premiere, Moon over Maenefa, commissioned by the Royal Academy of Music for its 200th anniversary, was premiered by Marcus Dawson on 31 March, 2021 at the  RAM and is now online https://www.ram.ac.uk/recordings/spring-recital  (at c. 34 mins).

The Shape of Trees (2020) for SATB chorus, commissioned by the BBC for the BBC Singers  has been included as part of 'The Seven Ages of Woman' on the complementary CD released with BBC Music Magazine in their June 2021 issue. 
   
Another airing for Clytemnestra (from the BIS CD -- see below) occurred on BBC Radio 3 on the Lunchtime Concert on Wednesday, 20 January, 2021 -- the day of momentous events in the USA.  Very à propos! 

'The Therapy of Moonlight', no.1 of the piano suite, A Garland for Anne (2002), is now on the ABRSM Grade 7 syllabus; as well as the ABRSM's published recording and that of Chenyin Li, who recorded the suite for the CD Light and Water in Rhian's presence, there are now at least 13 performances of the piece on YouTube (with over 25K hits).  In late January 2021, Rhian gave an on-line presentation of the piece to performers and teachers in Australia and China.


Recent Publications
  • Orpheus for voice, lute and viol (or voice, guitar and cello) (2021). Two songs, texts by Tabitha Hayward. Pub. Tŷ Cerdd.  Influenced by 16th/17th century composers, including John Dowland.   
  • Salve nos for solo viola (2021).  Now on CD (see below).  Pub. Tŷ Cerdd.  
  • Moon over Maenefa (2020), for solo baritone, text by Gerard Manley Hopkins,  Pub. Tŷ Cerdd.  
  • 'Rhyfedd, rhyfedd / Wonder, wonder' (2020), anthem for SATB chorus and organ pub. Vol. 3, Multitude of Voyces, ed. Louise Stewart. The anthem is suitable for Christmas and the year round, the Welsh text by the renowned 18th-century poet, Ann Griffiths, and the Engish translation by the composer. 'Rhyfedd, rhyfedd' will also be published separately, later in 2021, by Stainer & Bell, in their series, Choral Now.  
  • Isolation Suite (2020) for solo piano, also published by Tŷ Cerdd.  Not very difficult, and rather tonal. It has been recorded (YouTube video) by five international pianists, a movement each.    
  • The Shape of Trees (2020) for SATB chorus, commissioned by the BBC for the BBC Singers and published by Stainer & Bell in their series, Choral Now. This was performed and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in March, 2020.
  • The Moon and I (2020) a set of four songs for medium voice and piano, to poems by Tabitha Hayward and Anne Stevenson, commissioned by the Ludlow English Song Weekend, also published by Tŷ Cerdd.  

Latest CDs  

Tŷ Cerdd's anthology of contemporary Welsh song, Taliesin's Songbook (TCR031) includes the soprano version of Rhian's 'Yr Alarch'.  

 Hiyoli Togawa's CD, Songs of  Solitude (BIS) contains 'Salve Nos' for solo viola, newly commissioned for the CD. What a wonderful performance!   

The CD, Clytemnestra (BIS/Naxos) which includes the cycle, Clytemnestra, has had a great reception. It was short-listed for a Gramophone Award, 2020, and received fabulous reviews with *five stars* in The Times and BBC Music Magazine, as well as many other great write-ups. Rhian's work, performed by Ruby Hughes, soprano, with BBC NOW conducted by Jac van Steen, was broadcast again on BBC Radio 3 on Thursday 15 October, 2020 and yet again on 20 January, 2021.  

The Guardian/Observer included a complimentary review of the CD, Song-Lied-Cân (Tŷ Cerdd Records): issued on 6 December 2019, it contains the three songs of The White Amaryllis (May Sarton), the 5 songs of The Flowing Sand (Samuel Beckett) and 'Yr Alarch / The Swan' (anon) as well as some beautiful lieder by Clara Schumann. The singers are Katharine Dain and Paul Carey Jones, the pianist, Jocelyn Freeman. All wonderful performances. Available on Spotify.