Robin’s Eisteddfod double role

By Julie McNicholls Vale   |   Deputy news editor   |
Saturday 30th July 2022 7:30 am
@JulieCambrian
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Opera singer Robin Lyn Evans ()

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MACHYNLLETH opera singer Robin Lyn Evans will both perform and adjudicate at this year’s Eisteddfod.

Tomorrow afternoon, Sunday, 31 July at 1.30pm, he will take part in Cyngerdd Encore with his father, brothers and nephew in ‘Teulu Tynrhos’.

At 7.30pm on Monday, 1 August, he will appear in Babell Lên in ‘O Dresden i Dregaron’.

Originally from Pont-rhyd-y-groes, Ceredigion, Robyn started singing in Eisteddfod competitions.

He attended the Royal College of Music, has won Llangollen International Young Singer of the Year, the Osborne Roberts Memorial Prize and David Ellis Memorial Prize, and has been seen locally performing with Mid Wales Opera.

When asked if it might be easier to get work if he was based in a city, Robyn responded: “Being in Mach works well. It’s got great rail links that have improved greatly in the last 30 years... well, until bad weather affects the tracks.”

Hopefully the trip to Tregaron won’t be too difficult.

Explaining more about O Dresden i Dregaron, the evening’s producer and co-ordinator, musician and radio presenter Sioned Webb said: “At the turn of the 19th century, George Thomson, a Scottish publisher sent a number of Welsh, Irish and Scottish folk song to the German composer, Ludwig van Beethoven. He sent others to Franz Joseph Haydn.

“Thomson was also a musician and friendly with the poet Robert Burns. Around 1809, Beethoven began setting these folk songs for Thomson who subsequently published them. They were scored for voice and piano trio in the typical style of the Classical period.

“The astonishing fact was that Beethoven composed 179 of these arrangements from the three above countries, more than any other genre of his oeuvre. It was hoped that these would have come to light in 2020, celebrating 250 years since Beethoven’s birth year, but Covid intervened. The project was then postponed until 2022 and slightly revamped.”

Other Welsh contemporary composers were invited to contribute.

O Dresden i Dregaron (From Dresden to Tregaron); from Germany to Wales, will now include four world premiers by Beethoven, Pwyll ap Sion, Guto Puw and Patrick Rimes. Two arrangements by Haydn will also be performed and one by Sioned Webb, first performed by the soprano Elin Manahan Thomas and the European Union Chamber Orchestra. Dafydd Idris, the folk singer from Pontypridd will sing the folk song in their familiar unaccompanied versions. The tenor is the local and internationally acclaimed operatic singer Robyn Lyn Evans and the trio will consist of Gwenno Morgan (piano), Patrick Rimes (violin), Jordan Williams (cello) and Sioned Webb (piano). The performance will take place in the Babell Lên on the Eisteddfod field at Tregaron on Monday, 1 August at 7.30pm.

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