“I’d recently retired from being a primary school teacher and was looking for something to do,” the first bass explains. “Fate had it that I bumped into an old friend whilst in town one day, and he invited me to come along to the next practice. I duly did, and when they sang Gwahoddiad, I was hooked!”
It was the perfect song for native Welsh speaker Meirion who comes from South Wales.
Coming from a bit of a musical family, it was only a matter of time before Meirion started to sing. His father organised musicals and concerts for their local chapel, and taking it to a more professional level, his sister showed a natural talent for song, winning Eisteddfods and going on to become a top notch opera star. She travelled internationally to perform, so Meirion’s not too far off when he says the singing gene is ‘in his blood’!
“My eyes were first opened to great music when we sang Handel’s Largo at school, but that was as a young boy. Somehow I got too busy and decided to focus on my career, but I’m so glad the music bug hit me again in 2007.”
Now Meirion’s one year into the chairman role, following a three year stint as vice chairman – doing everything from leading the AGMs and committee meetings to liaising between musicians and the choir to leading the whole team.
His proudest moment? “It has to be the opportunities to sing at places like the Birmingham Town Hall and Symphony Hall as part of a huge massed choir,” says Meirion. “I enjoy our local concerts, but these large scale events really do inspire you and the atmosphere is always brilliant. Joining with hundreds of other voices to sing the same song is very powerful and moving.
“If you enjoy music then we’d love to welcome you to our practices. Singing has given me great friendships, it’s really good for your health, and it gives you new skills. Life’s problems are also suspended when you stand up and sing the songs you love.”