A lovely rendering of 'Rhyfedd, rhyfedd' in its Welsh version was given by New College Choir, Oxford, Robert Quinney, director, at their Carol Service on Sunday 5th December. Now online. 'Rhyfedd, rhyfedd' is at c. 57'30".
Also bravo to the Tailleferre Ensemble for performing the Little Duos for oboe and cor anglais several times in October and November, including two concerts at Dulwich, and for now planning to place the pieces on CD.
Other performances at this time included three song-cycles, at the Oxford Lieder Festival and Ludlow English Song Weekend. 'Wildflower Songbook', commissioned by the OLF in 2015, was given another performance at the Oxford festival. At Ludlow, the song-cycles Spring Diary and The Moon and I were performed. The latter was commissioned by the Ludlow festival, at which Rhian also ran a composition workshop for five young composers and took part in a panel discussion.
|Gamal Khamis, RS, James Atkinson, Lana Bode, Shakira Tsindos, RS|
'Spring Diary' 'Wildflower Songbook'
The premiere of the violin and piano duo, Moving Images, took place in Aberystwyth (with Elena Urioste and Tom Poster) in October, while Isolation Suite for piano, already on YouTube, had a live performance in November in Norwich by Jocelyn Freeman. The accordion quintet, Mist on the Hills, due to be played in November, has been postponed: it will now be performed at the Royal Academy of Music, London in February.
Recently completed: Three Welsh Folksongs/Tair Cân Werin, for SSA women's choir Commissioned by 'Dare to Sing' Choir, Cwmdare, Aberdare, it will be premiered next year. Also Rejoice, Fantasia on 'Victimae Paschali Laudes' for organ, commissioned by Anna Lapwood for an anthology to be published by Stainer & Bell next year.
'The Therapy of Moonlight', no.1 of the piano suite, A Garland for Anne (2002), is 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 15 other performances of the piece on YouTube and Spotify (with almost 50K hits). Earlier in 2021, Rhian gave an on-line presentation of the piece to performers and teachers in Australia and China.
- 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. Performance now on YouTube. Rhian gave an introduction to this piece at the 3rd Biennial Conference, 'Women's Work in Music', at Bangor University in September (where two of her 'Cerddi Hynafol' songs were also performed, by Sioned Terry and Iwan Llewelyn-Jones).
- 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.
- 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.
- Tŷ Cerdd's anthology of contemporary Welsh song, Taliesin's Songbook (TCR031) includes the soprano version of Rhian's 'Yr Alarch'. Great review of the work and Elin's performance in BBC Music Magazine, September 2021.
- 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.