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Côr Meibion Ystradgynlais 6
Forging new links


In the mid 1960's links were made between German Choirs and South Wales male voice choirs. Côr Meibion Ystradgynlais forged a partnership with the Mannerchor Liederkranz 1899 from Gelsenkirchen near Essen in Germany. This fine German choir first visited South Wales in May 1967 when they gave several concerts and broadcast on the BBC. The success of this tour and the friendships made then led to a longstanding involvement on behalf of Côr Meibion Ystradgynlais with overseas choirs.

"Choir's triumphant tour of Germany 1968"
(from Llais Llafur/South Wales Voice)
The Ystradgynlais Choir will never forget the reception accorded on arrival in Gelsenkirchen. Thousands of people and the town band bad waited in the courtyard of the Stadtsparkasse for two hours. After a brief speech of welcome by Herr Hans Sasser, chairman of Liederkrarlz Mannerchor 1899, and the singing of "Auld Lang Syne", the band played the two national anthems, and then marched in front of the Welsh contingent, with crowds cheering en route to the Sparkasse canteen.
The following morning in glorious sunshine, more than 2,000 people gathered at a Gelsenkirchen park to listen to the Ystradgynlais and German choirs.
The evening concert at the theatre was a real test for the Welsh choir. The large hall was packed to capacity, the stage was beautifully decorated, with emblems of both choirs side by side, together with the German and Welsh flag along side each other.

The choir in performance at the Music Pavilion, Gruga Park, Essen, Conductor - Daniel Morgan, and Accompanist Myra Jones-Davies Performing in Essen, 1968

The Ystradgynlais Male Voice Choir reached an exceptionally high standard, and appreciation of the audience was revealed by the long and spontaneous applause. It was a magnificent performance. The soloists, Messrs. Glyndwr Jones, David Phillips, David Hughes and Selwyn Morris, also captivated the large audience. The choir also gave a thrilling concert at the Music Pavillion in the picturesque Gruga Park, Essen. 
by Talfryn Phillips

(report of the 1968 trip to Germany continued on the next page)

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