Episode 2 Llangollen

Episode 2

Sara Edwards introduces highlights from the 2011 International Eisteddfod in Llangollen, North Wales, featuring singers and dance groups from around the world.

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And very warm welcome to our second programme of the 2011 Eisteddfod.


Once again this is a festival pillock highlights will stop


spectacular performances, two well on tenors, countries united on the


stage and the who will claim the Hello will stop welcome to the


children's choir from China. They have spent 10 hours in a plane and


several hours more travelling overland to get here. Despite all


of that, they have sung beautifully thought as. We are so pleased to


see them. Here is a taste of the junior choir competition. And here


is that choir from China up on the stage singing and dancing a


beautiful song about the flight of The New Forest Choir from England


sank a song about smugglers. -- How will front the children of a


primary school in Hong Kong. This is Joyce and Christopher will start


this is their teacher. You must be very proud of how the children have


performed today. Yes, indeed did very well today. We all love you


beautiful costumes, the at some colour to VED. No thank you. Here


is at traditional Chinese song This Welsh choir has been competing


here for 10 years. Here in the junior children's competition they


are singing a piece by a local Now we have the results of the


junior choir competition. Here are the winners will stop is your


conductor the best in the world? yes. What was it like being on the


stage? Amazing. Enjoy the rest of your time here. Well done! Now over


to our other reported down in the town. After travelling all the way


from India they still manage to look fresh and bright, how do they


On Thursday the honour of being Des President was bestowed on us all


You can die more than once in Cardiff and in Llangollen. There is


something very special about this coming together to share music,


isn't there? There is. It is a very special place. Sometimes you need


to go elsewhere to find that out. I visited people in Africa who knew


about it. They knew that you had to cross the peace bridge to get here.


They knew that once you got to the field the whole one of would be


here singing in friendship. The festival spells out off the field.


I have been down the tow path and the canal. In the town the pubs are


full, there is dancing in the streets. It is literally the whole


world coming together having a ball. It is lovely to see it will stop


enjoy the rest of your time here. Take me back, remind me of so many


charms. I long to lie in Cardiff's From lung Coughlan be moved to an


historic baskets city known as San Sebastian which has been a city of


battles. The recent history has been less turbulent and the truce


announcement of 2010 created a new political environment. The basket


school is now openly the focal point of revival of traditional


cultures. We know that we always have to work with our basket


tradition and sculpture -- tradition and culture. Those


traditions, we have realised, and an important way to take the


children to new environments, to give them new opportunities to meet


different people and experience different cultures. The school's


dance teacher has made significant strides during his seven years with


the students. The dance group has increased in numbers six Fall and


now boasts over 180 members. This week, visitors to Llangollen have


the opportunity to enjoy some Basque culture. The young students


take to the stage in the children's And did the when requesting murk


here is an adjudicator. In the winner for traditional dance action


is reliant the Basque Country. their hard work paid off. The


dancers from the Basque Country and their college. You must be very


delighted. Yes, we came here 20 years ago and we won now this year,


two times. All those hours of hard work and practice paid off. A pint


Now we have an act from Perth in Welcome to Wales, all the way from


the Australia, how was your trip over? It was a really good


experience for me. I never thought I would be able to get this far


with my byline. We have come and Taking first place in the brand new


competition this year, the fault jockeys' competition, from the


Republic of South Korea. -- fork showpiece competition -- Folk


Showcase Competition. We checked in yesterday afternoon and were to be


up for or so one bus at 8 o'clock and one bus at 8: 30. When our


career went down to the lobby at 20 minutes to seven she was greeted


with two men who said we had to vacate the building immediately,


pack everything and leave. They had put the business into bankruptcy.


It was quite a challenge therefore for the Eisteddfod committee to


find them beds for the night. A body had to start each day and bet


earlier, it did not dampen their spirits. It is an extraordinary


experience to be there with so many people are who are there to make


music and share a love of music. It is a great cultural experience.


There are groups from all over the A worthwhile visit it was to


Llangollen, they came second in the Chamber Choir and third in the


There was an exciting community performance held featuring hundreds


of local schoolchildren, brought together to present a modern


We had the opportunity to follow the last-minute preparations in the


local school and made the director The children have risen to the


challenge splendidly. They have never performed in an opera before.


They have never done this type of music. And never on this sort of


scale. It is like going into battle. You have to be like the General on


top of the hill, you have cavalry and infantry and you try to bring


them together and keep an old repute as well as not lose too many


lives on the way! We have done the dress rehearsal. Loads of people


from other schools. It is good because you can make more friends.


It will be good for when we go to high school. I am really excited.


All my mum's friends are coming to see us. And all my dad's friends as


well. It is going to be great fun and I am a bit nervous. I have


already been on that stage before. So I am quite excited. I know what


it is like. With such a busy week, there was only one opportunity to


get the cast together Ron stage, and there was lots of looking


forward to arriving at the pavilion. We'll -- we will go every day when


it is on, it is a great time for our town. And the performance left


a huge impression on both the And now, to a mass performance by


the combined barbershop choirs and I saw your lips, I have your voice,


believe you me, I had no choice, and wild horses could not make me


stay away. I thought about Ammon live tonight, arms around you, good


and Pike, that is all I need for me to stay. Hello, Sara Edwards! It


has been so long, sour. What a great place to meet the French at


circle, surrounded by all these barbershop choirs. It is such a


good atmosphere. I had a permanent smile on my face. I am getting my


sequins sewn on this afternoon! have a very famous tenor with us


these days, meeting the people. This is my first time here!


Fantastic, wonderful! They might have been singing in harmony


outside but what was it like on stage? It was one of those


competitions that brought a smile to every face, especially when the


squire from Cheshire came on and gave a very rousing rendition of


Another competition that was new for me was the folk choir


competition, and in particular, this group from Taiwan, who sang an


incredible song about a train journey and told the story very


We will hear more from Wyn Evans later. I am joined by the First


Minister of Wales, Karen Evans. It is more than just an arts festival,


isn't it? It is. The festival was originally started after the Second


World War, and the message of peace has been strong throughout its


history. What do you enjoy about Llangollen, as a visitor? The fact


that you see so many different people from around the world. There


is scope dancing taking place. Tremendous variety. It helps people


to get together and understand each other, and the more you can do that,


the more chance you have got copies. What about the future of


Llangollen? There are cutbacks happening all around us. Has it got


a good future? There have been difficulties in the past few years,


and these can be resolved, and the festival can be put on a comforting


four years to come. We have had the power for 65 years. Llangollen is


not short of performing talent. These are images to be cherished.


The window on the world ceremony, when countries marched in


There are plenty of performances taking place across town. Here we


have a quiet from China, reforming a song about smiling, Europe by the


From the smiling choir at the Rover, to a smiling Russell Wotton,


performing at a packed pavilion, headline they -- headlining the


gala concert on Tuesday. I came here as a child of my grandparents


and my parents, so I have fond memories of this area, and of North


Do you have to stand back and think that I have got 4,000 people


hanging on every note? That is what makes this event special. It is


steeped in history as well. This gentleman has performed you, and Le


Channel Pavarotti, -- Luciana Pavarotti. It is a real thrill to


be here. It is not often that I walked out in front of one audience


and think, oh, dear. I feel blessed to be here this evening. Thank you


very much! People ask if I am pooling nervous before I go on


stage, and that was how I was three or four years ago when my life was


threatened by two brain tumours, but now nice like this are just a


dream come true for me. -- now it One of the many lovely things about


the international Eisteddfod is that the pavilion and field are so


close to the town, it gives everyone the chance to explore


everything that Llangollen has to offer. The street dance competition


was held in a local hotel, because the rain made it difficult to dance


on the streets. This dance group from Ghana did not seem to mind at


But winning this competition held in the Hotel were the Heritage


dancers from India, wrecker were winners here at Llangollen, but


this is the first time they have one insider hotel, and typical of


the mood at Llangollen, everybody I young Italian tenor came to


Llangollen for the first time with a choir from more dinner in Italy.


-- Modena. Leakey and we have my father, and we want, to win, it was


And this is the Pavarotti Trophy, for which representatives from five


categories battle it out for the choir of the world title. Last year


of this trophy went to the Philippines. When I arrived


everyone said, you have to hear the squire from the Philippines, they


are brilliant. And it has been fantastic. The level of performance


is very high. What did you make of the choir from the Adventist


University of the Philippines? piece is, they say, a gibberish


chant to encourage a good harvest. Their loud singing was so control.


Never sing louder than lovely, they say, and it never went cloud our


What did you make of the Chamber Choir? They signed a boss another


piece, which was a huge mistake because they started doing the


movements, and that is very difficult to pull off. It was like


watching my father dancing at the We saw quite a bit of movement Mthe


barbershop group. The affinity group. I was thinking I should put


on some sequins for this number. Somehow it pulled together this


movement, all kind of individuals, but singing as a quiet, a beautiful


blend. THEY SING: Son of a Preacher Then the ladies of the Mansfield


University Choir of the USA. What did you think of them? They were


sensational. They had been singing these angelic pieces all the way


through, then they sang something that was like something from the


film, Sister Act. They threw caution to the wind and really went


Last but by no means least, the Wessex Male Voice Choir. This was


the competition everybody was watching. Three Welsh choirs


competing, and so, for this English male voice choir to come to what we


think is the land of male voice choir singing, to competing -- to


compete against the Welsh Millwall's -- Welsh male voice


choirs, they sang a piece by a Welsh composer, and that went down


delay well in the hall. -- really So, if you were one of the


adjudicators, what would you do? would go for the Filipino choir.


They showed a lot of dynamic and sang with real heart, and that is


what I am looking for. Let us see if the adjudicator's agree with you.


The Adventist University of the It has been an incredible week at


Llangollen. We hope you have enjoyed the coverage. We can leave


Sara Edwards introduces highlights from the International Eisteddfod in Llangollen. Singers and dance groups from around the world come to North Wales for this annual event, which was originally set up to help heal the wounds of the Second World War.

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