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Cylchlythyr/Newsletter 36 Date/Dyddiad: Ebrill/April 2010

From the Editor

Sometimes a line, or less, of poetry – three or four words will do it – will bring music into the mind, directly. This is not the same thing as words which describe a thing or situation which then sparks music, but a direct link, from the words, to something heard. Both sources of inspiration are of course valid, as are many others. But I asked myself, about the direct link, - why?

Poetry, unlike music, can provide rhythm, a verbalized idea, and visual imagery, in one memorable bundle, and the more of these the fragment contains, the more significant it seems to be.

The rhythm of the fragment is linked in the mind with the rhythmic landscape of the whole poem, and this is a powerful source of music. The verse of some poets is inherently musical. Tennyson's line “Now sleeps the crimson petal, now the white” must be one of the most set-to-music phrases in existence - a look at the top few listings in the current Google page, without opening a single link, offers five composers (for the record: Benjamin Britten, Roger Quilter, Philip Moore, Ned Rorem and Allen McCullough.)

The verbalized idea in this line – even the flowers, all of them, are asleep (therefore, night time) - sets the stage (a garden) and atmosphere (silence, perhaps moonlight).

But above all, and strangely, here, for me, it is the vivid visual clash of colours, crimson and white, which seems to set the bells pealing, and generate music.

The link between poetry and music will obviously be different for every musician, and equally obviously cannot be completely explained?
Enid Luff
Oddiwrth y Golygydd

O dro i dro bydd llinnell, neu lai hyd yn oed, o farddoniaeth – tri neu bedwar gair – yn tywys cerddoriaeth yn uniongyrchol yn ei sgil. Nid geiriau yn disgrifio gwrthrych neu sefyllfa mo hyn, ond cysylltiad uniongyrchol rhwng y geiriau â rhywbeth newydd, clywadwy. Mae mwy nag un llwybr gan ysbrydoliaeth, wrth gwrs. Ond pam y cysylltiad arbennig yma?

Mae barddoniaeth yn gallu cynnwys rhythm, syniad wedi ei fynegi mewn geiriau, a delwedd weledig, i gyd ar yr un tro, peth na all cerddoriaeth ar ei phen ei hun ei wneud, a pho fwyaf o’r rhain sydd ynddo, po fwyaf o arwyddocad sydd iddo hefyd. Mae’r meddwl yn cysylltu rhythm y dernyn yn uniongyrchol a symudiad rhythmig y gan gyfan, a dyma’n aml ffynhonnell y gerddoriaeth. Mae cerddi rhai beirdd yn gynhenid gerddorol. Mae’n rhaid bod llinnell gyfarwydd Tennyson, “Now sleeps the crimson petal, now the white”, wedi ei gosod ar gân ymron fwy nag unrhyw linnell arall. Wrth agor tudalen Google, a darllen rhai o’r teitlau uchaf, down ar draws pump o’r cyfansoddwyr a’I gosododd hi (Benjamin Britten, Roger Quilter, Philip Moore, Ned Rorem ac Allen McCullough), a hynny heb agor yr un o’r dolennau.

Gosodir y llwyfan, fel be tae, gan y geiriau eu hunain. Mae hi’n nos (mae’r blodau’n cysgu), ‘rydym mewn gardd, mae hi’n dawel. Ond yn rhyfedd iawn, i mi, yr hyn sy’n deffro’r awen gerddorol yw’r gwrthdaro gweledol rhwng lliwiau’r rhosod, y gwritgoch a’r gwyn.

Yn amlwg, mae’r ddolen gyswllt rhwng barddoniaeth a chân yn wahannol i bob cyfansoddwr, ac efallai nad oes gwir eglurhad yn bod amdani?
Enid Luff
Composing in Luxembourg

.. well, composing anywhere really. I can’t think of any discernible effect living in Luxembourg has had on my music during the twenty seven years I’ve lived here. As a physical environment it is physically safe, pleasant and rather neutral compared with the drama of Gwynedd or the Salzkammergut, both of which inspire and demand response. I suppose the positive side here is something we take for granted after so much time: the continuous need to use and switch between – without noticing, sometimes – the four main languages, German, Luxembourgish (a Mosel-Frankish dialect variant of German) French and English. Over 40% of the work force commute across the border every day, over half the resident population is not Luxembourgish (Portuguese, Italians and the rest) and every language of Europe and beyond can be heard everywhere. At a dinner party last night we spent a few minutes deciding which two languages we would use, given the presence of French, Danes, a Pole, Germans and me!
What a contrast with the closed border at Dover or Gatwick, staffed by monolingual paranoid obsessives. It’s always a negative experience, reminiscent of the old Warsaw Pact checkpoints, to come home to Britain and exchange the freedoms to travel without documents we enjoy on the ‘mainland’ for this nonsense and the barrage of threats menaces and warnings about the cameras. George Orwell, indeed, even now in Llanberis! Ugh!!
To return from the rant, this totally international atmosphere clearly has advantages and disadvantages: you experience a lot of everything, but not enough of any one thing. So I know a lot about Latvia, for example, but don’t really settle into a French or German or whatever else speaking world for more than half an hour at a time. You have to work and concentrate to achieve depth. It’s something like living in a very comfortable airport lounge: people, languages, cultures, come and go. You have to discriminate and find what you can. A potential disadvantage, or maybe not!
On the very positive side, the musical ensembles here are all totally mixed: VOX, one of my choirs, has singers from Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Australia, England, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden, Venezuela, Latvia, Poland, the Czech Republic etc etc. A lot of input in rehearsals from radically differing traditions, and as well a network of international links and possibilities which has served me well. In 2009, for example, I was able to give performances in Finland, Germany and the Czech Republic, as well as in Gwynedd precisely through these contacts.
There can be too much of a good thing: Luxembourg is very small (Pwllheli with a Foreign Office: 400.000 + population) and very rich. Culture is purchased elsewhere and imported en masse. Prestige is everything, and local initiatives suffer from lack of audiences because of competition from world class ensembles which seem to perform here every night. What chance does an amateur choir have when the Monteverdi Choir is singing next door?
What of the backlash? The national motto of Luxembourg is ‘we want to stay as we are’ – understandable given the waves of invasion by Spanish, Austrian, French and German forces over the last centuries. I cannot begin to imagine that England (and I choose my example deliberately and carefully) would be as welcoming and tolerant to people from so many cultures who are soon going to form the majority of the population, and can vote! Of course they nurture what they have, and this is possible because a country so much smaller than Wales, and with less resources, is able to take decisions in its own interests because it is an independent state ... no talk of ‘Assembly Government’ or ‘Home Nations’ here! If a project is seen to be viable and interesting, it is financed, even now. Because there are so many Embassies in such a small place, you trip over diplomats when you go out of the door. Direct links to governments worldwide are very easy to establish. My own Requiem for Jan Palach was set up in a fifteen minute conversation with the Czech Ambassador. I just had to go home and write it! The CD, concerts here and in Prague fell into place, and later the extensive media coverage.
This is, for a composer, surely the most positive dimension of living and working here in Luxembourg: culture is valued, supported and promoted. Of course, as a non-Luxembourger I’m not part of the inner circles, but as a Welsh composer who does not live in Wales, I can say the same of the situation there. The fate of the exile is to be a double exile, belonging nowhere and enjoying, from time to time, refreshing double doses of self pity and hiraeth. I can’t imagine living any other way ...... and at least I got to blow my own trumpet on the Summit of Snowdon last June for the opening ceremony (set up via an iPhone from a wine terrace on the Mosel! Ho hum ....... ).

Dafydd Bullock
Cyfansoddi yn Lwcsembwrg

Cyfansoddi yn Lwcsembwrg

... wel, yn unrhyw le, a dweud y gwir. Ni allaf feddwl am unrhyw effaith ddirnadwy a gafodd byw yn Luxembourg ar fy ngherddoriaeth yn ystod y saith mlynedd ar ugain y bum yn byw yma. Mae’r amgylchedd yn ddiogel, yn braf, ac yn gymharol ddinod o’i gymharu dyweder a drama Gwynedd neu’r Salzkammergut, dau le sy’n ysbrydoli, ac yn mynnu ymatebiad. Mae rhywun yn cymryd agweddau cadarnhaol bywyd yma’n ganiataol ar ol cyhyd o amser: er enghraifft, bod rhaid defnyddio’r pedair brif iaith, a newid rhyngddynt, yn barhaus, sef Almaeneg, Lwcsembwrgaidd (tafodiaith Ffrancaidd yn perthyn i ardal y Mosel), Ffrangeg a Saesneg, a hynny weithiau heb sylwi.

Mae dros bedwar deg y cant o weithwyr y ddinas yn croesi’r ffîn bob dydd, mae dros hanner y boblogaeth yn dod o’r tu allan i Lwsembwrg (o Bortugal, o’r Eidal ac yn y blaen), a chlywir pob un o ieithoedd Ewrop, ac o thu hwnt, ym mhobman. Mewn parti neithiwr, buom yn treulio ychydig funudau yn penderfynu pa ddwy iaith fyddem yn siarad, ym mhresenoldeb Ffrancwyr, Daenwyr, Pwyliaid, Almaenwyr, a minnau. Mor wahannol yw hyn oddiwrth y ffin cauedig yn Dover neu Gatwick, gyda’i gwarchodlu uniaith obsesiynol. Profiad digalon bob amser, yn codi atgof o'r hen siecbwyntiau dan Gytundeb Warsaw, yw dod adref i Brydain, a chyfnewid y rhyddid a fwynhewn yn Ewrop i deithio heb ddogfennau am y lol yma, y bygythion, a’r rhybuddion ynglyn a chamerau. Mae George Orwell yn fyw heddiw, hyd yn oed yn Llanberis! Ach-y-fi!
Dyna ddigon o rwgnach! Mae’n amlwg bod i’r awyrgylch hollol ryngwladol yma fanteision ac anfanteision: cewch brofi llawer o bob mathau o bethau, ond ni chewch brofi digon o unrhyw un peth arbennig. Er enghraifft, gwn lawer erbyn hyn, am Latfia, ond ni allaf ymollwng i fyd Ffrenging neu Almaeneg, neu fyd unrhyw iaith arall, am fwy na hanner awr ar y tro. Rhaid canolbwyntio’n ofalus ac yn ddyfal i ddarganfod dyfnder mewn unrhyw beth. Mae e fel byw mewn lolfa porthladd awyr cyffyrddus dros ben: mae pobl ac ieithoedd yn mynd a dod. Rhaid dal sylw, a darganfod beth fedrwch. Efallai nad anfantais yw hyn?

Ar yr ochr bositif iawn, mae’r grwpiau cerddorol yma yn hollol gymysg. Mae gan un o’m corau, sef
VOX, gantorion o’r Iwerddon, o Ffrainc, o’r Almaen, o’r Eidal, o Awstralia, o Loegr, o Lwcsembwrg, o Norwy, o Sweden, o Fenesuela, o Latfia, o wlad Pwyl, o Czechoslvakia, ayyb, ayyb. Cawn lawer o gyfraniadau mewn rihyrsals o wahannol draddodiadau hollol wahannol i’w gilydd, ond hefyd rhwydwaith o gysylltiadau a chyfleoedd rhyngwladol fy’n fendith enfawr i mi. Yn 2009, er enghraifft, cefais gyfle i roi perfformiadau yn y Ffindir, yn yr Almaen, ac yn Czechoslvakia, yn ogystal ag yng Ngwynedd, drwy’r cysylltiadau hyn.

Weithiau, mae yna ormodedd o fanteision. Lle bychan iawn yw Lwcsembwrg (Pwllheli, gyda swyddfa bost, y boblogaeth ychydig dros 400,000) ac yn gyfoethog iawn. Prynir celfyddyd o’r tu allan, a’i fewnforio yn un fflyd. Mae statws yn holl-bwysig, ac mae unrhyw fenter frodorol yn methu yng ngwyneb y gystladeuaeth â perfformwyr byd-enwog fydd yn chwarae yma bob nos. Pa siawns sydd i gôr lleol, a’r Monteverdi Choir yn canu drws nesaf?

Beth am yr adlach?
Arwyddeiriau pennaf Lwcsembwrg yw “mynnwn aros fel ‘rydym ni” – hawdd deall hyn wrth gofio’r heidiau o filwyr Sbaen, Awstria, Ffrainc, a’r Almaen a dywalltodd i mewn dros y canrifoedd diwethaf. Allaf i ddim dechrau dychmygu y byddai Lloegr (‘rwy’n dewis fy enghraifft yn ofalus iawn) yn ymddwyn mor groesawgar a goddefgar tuag at bobl o wahannol draddodiadau fyddai’n dod cyn hir yn fwyafrif y boblogaeth, a phleidlais gennynt!
Wrth gwrs maent yn caru ac yn gwarchod eu heiddo celfyddydol. Gallant wneud hynny, gan y gall gwlad fechan llawer llai na Chymru, gyda llai o adnoddau, wneud penderfyniadau dros ei budd ei hunan gan ei bod yn wladfa annibynnol.... dim son am “Lywodraeth y Cynulliad” neu’r “Home Nations” yma! Os yw unrhyw brosiect yn gaddo’n dda, ac y gellir ei fforddio, caiff ei gyllido, hyd yn oed heddiw. Gan fod cymaint o lysgenadaethau mewn ardal mor fechan, byddwch yn cyfarfod â diplomatyddion wrth wneud dim ond mynd allan drwy’r drws. Hawdd iawn yw gosod i fyny cysylltiad ag unrhyw lywodraeth arall yn yr holl fyd. Comisiynwyd fy Requiem i Jan Palach yn ystod sgwrs chwarter awr gyda Llysgenad Czechoslovakia. ‘Doedd dim rhaid i mi wneud dim heblaw mynd adref, a sgrifennu’r darn. Dilynnodd y CD, a’r cyngherddau yma ac yn Prague, ac yna sylw’r cyfryngau, yn hollol ddidrafferth yn sgîl hynny.

Heb os nag onibai, i gyfansoddwr, dyma’r agwedd fwyaf positif o fyw, a gweithio, yma yn Lwcsembwrg: caiff celfyddyd ei drysori, ei gynnal a’i hyrwyddo. Wrth gwrs, gan nad wyf yn frodor, nid wyf yn mynychu’r cylchoedd mewnol, ond fel cyfansoddwr o Gymro nad yw’n byw yng Nghymru, gallaf ddweud yr un peth am y sefyllfa yno. Dyna ffawd yr alltud bob amser, alltudiaeth ddwbl, heb berthyn yn unman, ac yn mwynhau o dro i dro byliau cysyrlawn o hiraeth. Ni allaf ddychmygu byw mewn unrhyw ffordd arall.........a chefais chwythu fy utgorn fy hunan ar gopa’r Wyddfa mis Mehefin diwethaf yn y seremoni agoriadol (trefnwyd y peth ar y teliffon o “deras gwin” uwchben yr afon Mosel! Ho hym ......).
Dafydd Bullock

A Happy New Year ...

The following is quoted, with permission, from the BASCA Chairman's Chat, January issue of this year. (We leave our readers to judge whether the wintry metaphor is still relevant, literally and figuratively!):
This cold snap may be a challenge to going about our daily existence, but it is also a wry metaphor for the wintry conditions which surround our professional lives and while we know the snow will eventually disappear and warmer days will follow, there is no such certainty that the economic, technological and cultural chill will lessen as the year progresses.

None of us is immune to these work weather-fronts:  our Media members are squeezed on every side by the rights-grabbing moguls in the film and TV industry whose working practices are increasingly determined by trans-Atlantic trends which translate into contracts for hire - the very worst examples of the buy-out culture.  Without rights, a composer can't create, direct or develop income.

For today's emerging songwriting talent, there is little in the way of the sunshine of A&R investment which many of our established songwriters benefited from.  As one of our members pointed out to me after last month's Chat, it is the likes of Simon Cowell and the X-Factor industry which is sucking money earmarked for artistic development out of the industry, diverting it towards bland, short shelf-life puppet acts with big-buck earning puppet-masters holding all the strings.  Without investment in A&R, originality falters, publishing declines and audiences are led by the nose.
Contemporary classical composers are the long-suffering victims of the unremitting cultural freeze compounded by the Blair government but with its roots in Margaret Thatcher's remorseless cuts in music education provision.  Where else in a cultivated Europe does the Western classical heritage have to fight so hard for recognition?  (Indeed we have heard very recently, that the enlightened people of Croatia have chosen a composer as their newly-elected President - Ivo Josipovic.) 

Recognition would be good, support would be better!  Contemporary classical music, of course, isn't going to disappear - many who write it are far too committed to its vocational values - but it is in grave danger of becoming so rarefied that it drops out of the public consciousness as an accepted part of the fabric of life and the tapestry of choice.  Without sustained support for new music, choice is reduced, horizons narrow, experience becomes limited and expectation is dulled.

Moving back a little more firmly to the weather metaphor, there are, too, increasingly prevailing conditions which are dictated by the dominance of technological revolution and which affect all composition and all songwriting.  Meteorological forecasters have spoken in the last few days of winds which will slice right through us giving new meaning to the description, raw.  Such are the winds of change in the area of digital delivery.  No longer a warm zone which would see our distribution (and therefore earning) possibilities shoot way above the seasonal averages, these winds of change have proved almost impossible to capture and harness as we had hoped.

In a super-entrepreneurial age, a dignified and controlled evolution has been hi-jacked by clever opportunists who have created new markets virtually overnight, often profiting from or buoying up their enterprise with creative material which has gone either poorly or entirely un-rewarded.  The legitimate licensed market has struggled to keep up with the game and as a consequence all sorts of agencies have been allowed to take too great a share of a pot which due to its unprecedented globalisation has become spread too thinly and is extremely vulnerable to profiteers and pirates.  You might say, it never rains but it pours, floods, freezes and burst pipes and leakages follow!

And, as Rob McElwee might say - you have been warned! 

So, we enter 2010 with harsh predictions but knowing what we have to face makes it more possible to contend with.  BASCA will be braving the elements and standing up for composers and songwriters wherever and whenever we can in the hope that we can provide some effective defences against these gathering storms.

Sarah Rodgers (Chair of BASCA)

Blwyddyn Newydd Dda.

Dyfynwyd yr erthygl a ganlyn, gyda chaniatad, o Chairman's Chat BASCA, mis Ionawr y flwyddyn hon (caiff ein darllenwyr benderfynu os yw’r gymhariaeth aeafol yn dal yn ddilys, yn llythrennol neu beidio!):
Mae digon o drafferth i’w gael yn y sbel oer bresennol wrth fyw bywyd bob dydd – tybed a yw hefyd yn ddameg neu fetaffor dros y “gaeaf” sy’n bod yn bresennol yn ein bywydau proffesiynol? Gwyddom yn iawn y bydd yr eira’n diflannu yn y pen draw, ac y bydd dyddiau cynhesach yn dilyn, ond nid oes unrhyw sicrwydd y bydd yr oerfel ffigyrol , economig, technolegol, a chelfyddydol yn cilio fel yr â’r flwyddyn yn ei blaen.

‘Does yr un ohonnom yn ddiogel oddiwrth y “tywydd drwg” yma. Mae ein haelodau ym maes y cyfryngau dan fygythiad o bob tu gan benaethiaid y diwydiant ffilm a theledu sy’n dwyn hawliau cyfansoddwyr, a’u ffyrdd o weithredu fwy-fwy dan ddylanwad arferion yn yr Unol Daleithiau, hynny yw, prynu gwaith a hawliau’r cyfansoddwr, enghreifftiau gwarthus o’r “buy-out culture”. Heb hawliau, ni all unrhyw gyfansoddwr greu na chyfarwyddo ei waith na datblygu incwm.

'Does dim llawer o olau haul, chwaith, i gyfansoddwyr caneuon ifainc (songwriters) heddiw, dim o’r buddsoddi mewn A&R a oedd cymaint o fydd i lawer o’n cyfansoddwyr caneuon sefydledig. Fel y dywedodd un aelod wrthyf wedi darllen fy erthygl ddiwethaf, pobl fel Simon Cowell a’r diwydiant X-Factor sydd yn dwyn arian a ddylai fod ar gyfer datblygu doniau celfyddydol, a’i ddefnyddio i gynnal deunydd tila, diwerth, gyda meistri’r pypedau yn dal eu gafael yn y llinnynnau ac yn ennill miloedd. Heb fuddsoddiad mewn A&R, mae gwreiddioldeb yn mynd ar goll, a’r cynulleidfaoedd yn cael eu gwyrdroi.
Mae cyfansoddwyr clasurol cyfoes yn dal i ddioddef oddiwrth ”dywydd rhewllyd” celfyddydol cyfnod llywodraeth Blair, oedd yn etifeddu ymddygiad didrugaredd Margaret Thatcher tuag at addysg gerddorol yn yr ysgolion. Oes unrhyw wlad arall, mewn Ewrop ddiwylliedig, ble mae cyn lleied o barch a chydnabydiaeth yn bod i’n treftadaeth ddiwylliannol ni yn y Gorllewin? (Yn wir, clywsom yn ddiweddar bod pobl oleuedig Croatia newydd ethol cyfansoddwr fel arlywydd, sef Ivo Josipovic.)

Byddai’n dda cael cydnabyddiaeth, a byddai’n well fyth cael hyrwyddiad! Ni fydd cerddoriaeth glasurol gyfoes yn diflannu, wrth gwrs – mae llawer gormod o ymroddiad ymysg ei chyfansoddwyr – ond mae mewn perygl o fynd mor brin fel na fydd neb yn ymwybodol ohonni, ac felly ni fydd pobl yn gyffredinol yn gwybod amdani nac yn dewis gwrando arni. Heb gymorth parhaus i gerddoriaeth newydd, bydd llai o ddewis ar gael, bydd llai o bobl â phrofiad ohonni, ac ni bydd neb chwaith yn disgwyl ansawdd uchel na diddordeb ganddi.

Gan droi’n ôl at y gymhariaeth gyda’r tywydd, mae amodau newydd yn bod a benderfynnir gan y chwildro technolegol, ac sydd yn effeithio ar bob cyfansoddi a phob sgrifennu caneuon. Clywsom yn ddiweddar am wyntoedd mor ddeifiol eu bod yn rhoi ystyr newydd i’r gair “main”. Gwyntoedd felly sydd yn chwythu ar hyn o bryd ym maes technoleg ddigidol. Nid hinsawdd gynnes gyffyrddus gawn ni bellach, gyda gwell dechnoleg dosbarthu yn arwain at ennillion uwchlaw'r tymhorol, ond gwyntoedd dieithr na ellir mo’i dofi na’u defnyddio fel yr oeddym yn gobeithio.

Mewn oes or-dechnolegol fel heddiw, difethwyd esblygiad graddoI a chymhedrol system deg gan dechnolegwyr galluog a di-gydwybod sy’n creu marchnadoedd newydd dros nos, fel pe tae, yn aml gan elwa oddiwrth ddeunydd creadigol na thalwyd yn ddigonol amdano.
Mae’r farchnad gyfreithlon yn ymlafnio i ymdopi a’r sefyllfa, ac fel canlyniad cafodd pob mathau o asiantaethau fwy o arian nag oedd ganddynt hawl arno. Mae hyn yn golygu bod arian yn brin dros y byd cyfan, ac yn cael ei ladrata gan bobl a’u bryd ar elwa, boed gyfreithlon neu anghyfreithlon.
Mae hi’n tywallt y glaw, a hwnnw’n dod â llifogydd, rhew a phibellau dwr wedi torri, a’r dwr yn rhedeg i ffwrdd!

Cawsom ein rhybuddio!

Dyma ni, felly, ar drothwy 2010, yn rhagweld dyddiau tywyll, ond mae gwybod beth sydd i ddod yn ei wneud yn haws ei wynebu a delio ag e.

Bydd BASCA’n gwrthsefyll y storm, ac yn sefyll dros fuddiannau cyfansoddwyr cerddoriaeth glasurol a sgrifennwyr chaneuon ble bynnag a phryd bynnag y gallwn, gan obeithio gallu eu cynnal yng ngwyneb y stormydd sydd i ddod.
Sarah Rodgers (CadeIrydd BASCA)

from Max Charles Davies
My new Concerto for Orchestra, 'The Mysterious Kiss', was premiered on Saturday, 23rd January, in Reading Town Hall, by the Aldworth Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Andrew Taylor.
They really are a super amateur orchestra, and presented a challenging and rewarding programme.  I felt very honoured to have been asked to write the 'headline' work for this concert - very brave of them indeed!

from Christopher Maxim
My "Missa in Honorem Episcopi Challoneri", composed for the Mass to celebrate the dedication of the new buildings of Bishop Challoner Catholic Collegiate Schools by the Archbishop of Westminster, was performed on 22nd January 2010 by a choir of about 100 students, a 500-strong congregation and the school orchestra.  The conductor was Antonia Mott.
The Mass was performed at St Mary's & St Michael's R.C. Church, London E1.

My anthem "The Seas are Quiet" (SATB & organ) has been featured in the February 2010 edition of Organists' Review and published by Allegro Music.

Also, I have completed a commission for a wedding,  'To God who gives our daily bread' (words supposedly by Tallis and chosen by the couple) for SATB a cappella, which will be sung in The Queen's House, Greenwich on 31st July.

For Eastertide, I composed a new tune for the Easter Hymn "Jesus Christ is risen: the feast, good Christians, therefore keep" (G. R. Woodward, based on Victimae Pachali).  The music was written at the request of the Reverend Kevin Scully, Rector of Bethnal Green, London, and was sung by the congregation of St Matthew's Parish Church on Easter Day.  The music is available to download free of charge on the Sibelius website.

from Damian Rees
My 'To whom it may concern' for 7 players will be played by members of the Welsh Sinfonia at the Llandudno Festival in July. This work was premiered at the 2005 Swansea Festival.

from John Williamson
A concert was given on Feb. 10th at Rhyl Music Club by the Williamson Ensemble. The artists, with myself as pianist, were Nigel Shaw, baritone, Jonathan Richards, classical guitar, William Shaw, pianist (accompanist) and David Shaw, Violin.
The concert included my performance of 2 from my sets of 144 preludes, 6 Housman settings for voice and piano: (extracts from my c.100 Housman settings: The Ploughman, When Adam Lay in Eden Young, The Recruit, I Wake from Dreams and Turning, When I Watch the Living Meet.(from A Shropshire Lad and More Poems); Jonathan Richards included 2 of pieces for guitar and piano: Espanoleta and Hatchet Dance (not my pieces).

The American Magazine, Fanfare, based in New Jersey, are to give me space in the May/June and July/Aug issues, recommended through Divine Art Label who have my 3 volumes of piano works, played by Murray McLachlan of Chetham's, Manchester, on their catalogue; this will include an interview (through E Mail), a review of the 3 discs, and a designed coloured page of self and extract reviews.

from Gillian Stevens
My concerto for kantele and string orchestra was performed recently. It was commissioned by Timo Vaananen, one of Finland's foremost kantele players who played the solo part. The string orchestra was the Mikkeli string orchestra and it had its first performance in a lovely concert hall, the St Michaels Hall, which is the main concert hall in the Finnish town of Mikkeli . The conductor was Jani Telaranta. The concerto was 35 minutes long and formed the second half of the programme. Timo is a player who is very comfortable with improvising and the challenge was to write in such a way that he could use those skills. The parameters for the improvisation went from very free with only the scale given, to scale, rhythm, tessitura and timbre being controlled. Some sections of the solo part were written down, and the orchestral parts were set. The Finns give more time to rehearsal than the average professional orchestra here, so it was a good performance too.
The connection is that Dylan Fowler, Timo and I play in a trio together; Taith trio. We play and improvise around folk music from Wales and Finland and our own compositions. When we were playing in a festival in Haapavesi, the organiser, seeing that i was a composer, asked me to write a piece for their orchestra. Timo ended up playing in this, a kind of improvised drone. He enjoyed playing with the orchestra so much that he asked me to write a kantele concerto. The artistic director of the Mikkeli orchestra asked for the first performance. It was interesting working on the piece together. I knew Timo's playing well from playing with him. We got together twice while I was writing it; in Wales and in Finland. The rest of the discussion was done over e-mails and through the sending of Sibelius files and recordings. But I'm sure it wouldn't have worked so well without our having played and improvised together so much.

Andrew Powell
Andrew's theatrical presentation, The Red Lady of Paviland, was given on Thursday, 1st April 2010 at 7.15 pm, at the Lyric Theatre, King Street, Carmarthenshire,.
Drawn from a cave on the Gower Peninsula, the 20,000 year old ochre-stained bones of the Red Lady of Paviland provided the inspiration for this unique and imaginative bi-lingual presentation of Welsh music, history and mythology.

The evening featured award winning tenor Robyn Lyn, Royal Harpist Claire Jones, Côr Seingar, massed Children's Chorus and current Welsh League Brass Band Champions Burry Port Town. The centrepiece of the performance featured the world premiere performance of ‘Y Dyn Unig’, a new and evocative cantata by Andrew, who is a platinum album selling composer, and the leading Welsh poet Menna Elfyn. The performance was presented by Professor Mark Brake.

The project was supported by a Steps to New Music Award from the PRSF and the Arts Council of Wales, with additional support from Ty Cerdd.

from Lisa Mears
On Palm Sunday my 'Ave Virgo Sanctissima' and 'Pie Jesu' were broadcast on BBC Radio Devon performed by tenor Christopher Waring Davies accompanied by myself at the piano. I am currently completing some solo vocal works and new projects include a Requiem Mass for Amici Chamber Choir and a new work for violinist Christopher Horner.

from Brian Hughes
My commissions for this year include Beatus Vir for the choir of Westminster Cathedral which will be premiered in London on July16th; Morys y gwynt, a partsong for the celebrated mixed choir Cywair, and Troad, a piece for symphony orchestra that will be premiered by the National Youth Orchestra of Wales in their Autumn tour.

from Enid Luff
I am currently working on a piece for solo classical guitar for guitarist Michael McCartney, entitled “... trees dropped forth pearls ...”, which is a quotation from an early seventeenth century poem, Spring Bereaved, by William Drummond. I am so appreciating the opportunity to become better acquainted with such a beautiful instrument! (The fact that the above title begins and ends with dots has no significance except that tit is a quotation from the middle of a line of poetry . . .)

(There is no definite information available for the listings at present.)

IMPORTANT: Please send any news items and contributions of any kind to the Editor, Enid Luff, at
THE DEADLINE FOR THE NEXT ISSUE is June 30th. Late information, for the listings only, will be accepted later at the Editor’s discretion.

PLEASE NOTE: Views expressed in any part of this Newsletter are those of the writer only, and do not necessarily represent those of Cyfansoddwyr Cymru/Composers of Wales.


ddiwrth Max Charles Davies
Cafwyd premiere fy Nghonsierto newydd i Gerddorfa, The Mysterious Kiss, dydd Sadwrn Ionawr 23, yn Neuadd Dref Reading, gan yr Aldworth Philharmonic Orchestra, dan arweiniad Andrew Taylor.
Cerddorfa amatur ardderchog yw hon, yn cynnig rhaglen sylweddol a deniadol.
‘Roedd yn fraint gennyf – ac yn ddewr ar eu rhan hwythau – i mi gael fy nghomisiynu i gyfansoddi’r “gwaith mawr”.

Oddiwrth Christopher Maxim
Clywyd fy "Missa in Honorem Episcopi Challoneri" ar Ionawr 22, 2010. Cyfansoddwyd y darn ar gyfer Offeren i ddathlu cysegru adeiladau newydd y Bishop Challoner Catholic Collegiate Schools gan Archesgob Westminster. Y cantorion oedd côr o tua chant o fyfyrwyr, cynulleidfa o 500, a cherddorfa’r ysgol, dan arweiniad Antonia Mott. Perfformiwyd yr Offeren yn Eglwys Gatholig St Mary's & St Michael, Llundain E1.

Cafodd fy anthem The Seas are Quiet (SATB & organ) ei grybwyll yn Rhifyn mis Chwefror 2010 yr Organists' Review, a’i gyhoeddi gan Allegro Music.

Cyflawnais yn ddiweddar gomisiwn ar gyfer priodas, 'To God who gives our daily bread' (mae’r geiriau, yn ol yr hanes, gan Tallis, a dewiswyd hwy gan y pâr ifanc) i SATB a cappella, fe genir yr anthem yn The Queen's House, Greenwich ar Gorffennaf 31.

Ar gyfer y Pasg, cyfansoddais dôn newydd ar gyfer yr emyn "Jesus Christ is risen: the feast, good Christians, therefore keep" (G. R. Woodward, wedi ei seilio ar Victimae Pachali).  Cyfansoddais y gerddoriaeth ar gais y Parch. Kevin Scully, Rheithor Bethnal Green, yn Llundain a chanwyd yr emyn gan gynulleidfa Eglwys Sant Matthew ar ddydd y Pasg.
Gellir lawrlwytho’r emyn-don yn rhad ac am ddim o wefan Sibelius:.
Oddiwrth Damian Rees
Caiff fy narn 'To whom it may concern', i saith offeryn, ei chwarae gan aelodau’r Welsh Sinfonia yng Ngwyl Llandudno ym mis Gorfennaf. Cafodd y darn yma ei premiere yng Ngwyl Abertawe, 2005.

Oddiwrth John Williamson
Rhoddwyd cyngerdd ar Chwefror 10 yn y Rhyl Music Club gan y Williamson Ensemble. Yr artistiaid (gyda minnau wrth y piano), oedd Nigel Shaw, bariton, Jonathan Richards, gitar, William Shaw, piano (yn cyfeilio), a David Shaw, Ffidil.
Roedd y rhaglen yn cynnwys fy mherfformiad i o ddau ddarn gennyf, sef dau o fy 144 Preliwd, a chwe chân gennyf, y geiriau gan Housman, o’r 100 gosodiad gennyf o eiriau Housman): The Ploughman, When Adam Lay in Eden Young, The Recruit, I Wake from Dreams and Turning, When I Watch the Living Meet (o A Shropshire Lad and More Poems); cafwyd dau ddarn i gitar a phiano gan Jonathan Richards: Espanoleta a Hatchet Dance (nid gennyf i).

Bydd y cylchgrawn Americanaidd, Fanfare, sydd a’i bencadlys yn New Jersey, yn rhoi lle i mi are eu tudalennau yn rhifynnau Mai/Mehefin a Gorffennaf/Awst, drwy gymeradwyaeth Divine Art Label, sydd a 3 Cyfrol o fy narnau piano yn eu catalog (y pianydd yw Murray McLachlan o Chetham's, Manceinion). Bydd hyn yn cynnwys cyfweliad (drwy e-bost), adolygiad o’r tair CD, a tudalen liw arbennig o adolygiadau.
oddiwrth Gillian Stevens
Perfformiwyd fy nghonsierto i’r kantele a cherddorfa linnynol yn ddiweddar. Comisiynwyd hi gan Timo Vaananen, un o chwarewyr kantele gorau’r Ffindir, ac yntau oedd yn chwarae’r prif ran. Y gerddorfa oedd Cerddorfa Linnynol Mikkeli. Y neuadd oedd Neuadd Sant Mihangel, prif neuadd tref Mikkeli yn y Ffindir. Jani Telaranta oedd yn arwain. Mae’r darn yn 35 munud o hyd, yn llenwi ail hanner y rhaglen. Un o brif ddoniau Timo yw , ac mae’r darn yn adlewyrchu hynny, yn amrywio o rhydd iawn i ddarnau wedi eu cyfansoddi ymlaenllaw (yn rhannau’r gerddorfa a’r unawdydd).
Mae’r Ffiniaid yn treulio mwy o amser yn ymarfer nad yw’n arferol yma, felly cafwyd perfformiad da iawn.

Mae’r cysylltiad a’r Ffindir yn tarddu o’r triawd yn cynnwys Dylan Fowler, Timo a minnau, sef Triawd Taith. Byddwn yn chwarae ar y pryd o gylch caneuon gwerin Cymru a’r Ffindir, ac yn cynnwys ein cyfansoddiadau ein hunain.

Pan oeddym yn chwarae mewn gwyl yn Haapavesi, wrth weld fy mod yn gyfansoddwr, gofynnodd y trefnydd i mi gyfansoddi darn ar gyfer ei gerddorfa. Yn y diwedd, bu Timo yn chwarae yn y darn, math o drone byr-rybudd, profiad a fwynhaodd cymaint nes iddo ofyn i mi gyfansoddi consierto i’r kantele.

Gofynnodd cyfarwyddwr cerddorfa Mikkeli am gael rhoi’r perfformiad cyntaf. Diddorol iawn oedd cael cydweithio ar y darn, gan fy mod eisoes yn gyfarwydd ag arddull Timo. Llwyddasom i gyfarfod dwywaith yn ystod y gwaith, unwaith yng Nghymru ac unwaith yn y Ffindir, gyda gweddill y drafodaeth yn digwydd trwy e-bost, a gyrru dogfennau Sibelius a recordiadau. ‘Rwy’n teimlo fodd bynnag na fyddai hyn wedi bod mor llwyddiannus heb i ni fod wedi cydweithio cymaint yn barod.

Andrew Powell
Perfformiwyd drama gerdd Andrew, The Red Lady of Paviland, ar lwyfan Theatr y Lyric, Stryd y Brenin, Caerfyrddin, dydd Iau Ebrill 1af, 2010, am 7.15 yh.
Cafwyd esgyrn cochion 20,000 mlwydd oed y “ddynes goch” mewn ogof ym Mhenryn Gwyr. Hyn oedd ysbrydoliaeth y darn unigryw a llawn dychymyg yma, yn trin cerddoriaeth, hanes a chwedlau o Gyrmu,

Yn ystod y noson clywyd y tenor llwyddiannus Robyn Lyn, y delynores frenhinol Claire Jones, Côr Seingar, cor plant, a seindorf prês Burry Port Town, pencampwyr seindorf prês presennol y Welsh League. Canolbwynt y noson oedd premiere byd ‘Y Dyn Unig’, cantata newydd swynol gan Andrew, sydd yn gyfansoddwr “platinum album”, a’r bardd Menna Elfyn. Llywyddwyd y noson gan y Prifathro Mark Brake.

Hyrwyddwyd y prosiect hwn gan y PRSF dan y cynllun Steps to New Music, a Chyngor Celfyddydau Cymru, gyda chymorth ychwanegol gan Dy Cerdd.

Oddiwrth Lisa Mears
Ar Sul y Blodau darlledwyd fy anthemau 'Ave Virgo Sanctissima' a 'Pie Jesu' ar BBC Radio Devon, gan y tenor Christopher Waring Davies, gyda minnau yn cyfeilio ar y piano. Yn bresennol ‘rwy’n gorffen gwaith ar nifer o unawdau lleisiol a rhai prosiectau newydd, yn cynnwys Offeren Requiem ar gyfer Cor Siambr Amici, a darn newydd i’r ffidil i Christopher Horner.
oddiwrth Brian Hughes
Caiff fy anthem, Beatus Vir, ei ganu ar Gorffennaf 16 am 2yp, yn Eglwys Gadeiriol Westminster, Llundain. Caiff Morys y gwynt, comisiwn gan y cor cymysg adnabyddus Cywair, ei ganu gan y cor yn Eisteddfod Ryngwladol Llangollen 2010 a bydd Troad, darn i gerddorfa symffoni, yn cael ei berfformiad cyntaf gan Gerddorfa Ieuenctid Genedlaethol Cymru are eu taith yn yr hydref.

oddiwrth Enid Luff
‘Rwy’n gweithio ar hyn o bryd ar unawd i gitar clasurol, ar gyfer y gitarydd Michael McCartney, dan y teitl “... trees dropped forth pearls ...”(dyfyniad o ddarn o farddoniaeth gan William Drummond, o ddechreu’r ail ganrif ar byntheg). Pleser enfawr yw cael y cyfle i ymgyfarwyddo ag offeryn mor arbennig ac mor dlws ei sain.

(Nid oes gwybodaeth bendant i'r Rhestrau ar gael yn bresennol).

DALIER SYLW: DYDDIAD CAU y rhifyn nesaf yw .Mehefin 30. Gyrrwch unrhyw newyddion neu gyfraniadau, gan gynnwys manylion am gyhoeddiadau neu CDau , at Enid Luff, os gwelwch yn dda, e-bost: . Cynhwysir gwybodaeth hwyr, ar gyfer y rhestrau yn unig, yn ôl dyfarniad y Golygydd.

SYLWER HEFYD: Mae unrhyw farn a fynegir yn unrhyw ran o’r Cylchlythyr hwn yn perthyn i’w hawdur yn unig. Nid yw o angenrheidrwydd yn cynrychioli safbwynt Cyfansoddwyr Cymru/ Composers of Wales.
Gall rhai llythyrau at y Golygydd gael eu golygu neu eu byrhau.

members’ websites

Dafydd Bullock
Gareth Peredur Churchill
Max Charles Davies
Kenneth Gange
Paula Gardiner
Gareth Glyn
Stephen Goss and
John Hardy
Ben Heneghan
Brian Hughes
Meuryn Hughes
Andrew Lewis
David Lloyd-Howells
Owain Llwyd
Ian lawson
Enid Luff www.
John Metcalf
Christopher Painter
Dan Phelps
Leigh Phillips
Lynne Plowman
Peter Reynolds
Michael Robinson
Rhian Samuel and
Hilary Tann
Ceiri Torjussen
Jack White
Graham Williams
John Williamson

The Music Publishers’ Association offer a leaflet on copyright for composers
wishing to explain to users the rights of use in their music, from the Music
Publishers Association Ltd, 3rd Floor, Strandgate, 18/20 York Buildings,
London WC2N 8JU. Tel: 020 7839 7779, fax: 020 7839 7776.

Black Cat Music, suppliers of general concert/performance
equipment, staging, acoustics etc. More info at

Arts Council of Wales

ACW’s current funding details are available from its website
Contact any ACW office for information.

Cardiff office: Bute Place, Cardiff CF10 5AL Tel: 0845 8734 900

Colwyn Bay office: 36 Prince’s Drive Colwyn Bay LL29 8LA Tel: 01492
533440 Fax: 01492 533677 Minicom: 01492 532288

Carmarthen office: 6 Gardd Llydaw Jackson Lane Carmarthen SA3I 1QD Tel:
01267 234248 Fax: 01267 233084


websites of interest (Living Composers Project on the Internet) database of
information on contemporary composers. E-mail Dan Albertson at dalbertson ©
nupediacom (British Music Rights) (includes honk magazine)

gwefannau aelodau

Dafydd Bullock
Gareth Peredur Churchill
Max Charles Davies
Kenneth Gange
Paula Gardiner
Gareth Glyn
Stephen Goss and
John Hardy
Brian Hughes
Meuryn Hughes
Andrew Lewis
David Lloyd-Howells
Enid Luff www.
John Metcalf
Dan Phelps
Leigh Phillips

Lynne Plowman
Peter Reynolds
Michael Robinson
Gillian Stevens
Hilary Tann
Ceiri Torjussen
Jack White
Graham Williams
John Williamson

useful addresses

Arts Council of Wales (see above)

Ty Cerdd - Music Centre Wales, incorporating:
Ffederasiwn Cerddoriaeth Amatur Cymru/Welsh Amateur Music Federation
Canolfan Hysbysrwydd Cerddoriaeth Cymru/Welsh Music Information Centre
Celfyddydau Cenedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru/National Youth Arts Wales

Ty Cerdd-Music Centre Wales,
Wales Millennium Centre,
Bute Place,
Cardiff CF10 5AL
T: 029 2063 5640
F: 029 2063 5641
(alternatively, individual officers can be contacted by
“”., eg:, etc)

British Academy of Composers and Songwriters, British Music House, 26
Berners Street, London W1T 3LR tel: 020 7636 292 fax: 020 7636 2212 web:
The Performing Right Society, 29-33 Berners Street, London SW1P 4AA
BAFTA Cymru, Chapter Arts Centre, Market Street, Canton, Cardiff CF5 1QE
tel: 029 2022 3898, e-mail uk

Ty Cerdd, Wales Millennium Centre, Bute Place, Cardiff Bay, CF10 5AL Tel 029 2063 5640
Keith Griffin, director                                                                     
Chris Sharpe (general enquiries, applications, etc)                          
Alexandria James (library, NYAW, brass band foyer performances)  
Matthew Thistlewood                                                                    
Ruth Leggett (manager)                                                                
Charlotte Griffin (research, education, WMIC library)                        
James Clarke (recording technician)                                              
Rhiannon McLean                                                                        

Welsh Music Information Centre, Ty Cerdd, Canolfan Mileniwm Cymru, Bute Place, Bae Caerdydd, CF10 5AL Tel 029 2063 5642
Welsh Music Guild/Cymdeithas Cerddoriaeth Cymru 33, Southminster Road, Penylan, Cardiff CF 029 2049 1585 e-mail:
Incorporated Society of Musicians, 10, Stratford Place, London W1E 3YZ
Sibelius Support Services (The Data Store) new number 0208 460 6537
Women in Jazz, Queen’s Buildings, Cambrian Place, Swansea SA1 1TW,
tel: 01792 456666

recording companies
Cwmni Recordio Fflach, Llys y Coed, Heol Dinbych y Pysgod, Cardigan,
Ceredigion, SA43 3AH, Tel: (01239) 614691, Fax: (01239) 614680
Cwmni Recordio Sain, Llandwrog, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, LL54 2YQ, Tel: (01286) 831111,
Red Kite Records (Martin Levan), Cwmargenau, Llanwrda, Carmarthenshire SA19 8AP Tel: 01550 722001,
cyfeiriadau defnyddiol

Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru
Mae cynlluniau newydd CCC ar gael nawr. Ceir gwybodaeth gyffredinol ar eu gwefan. Os am ganllawiau a ffurflenni, cysylltwch ag unrhyw swyddfa (gweler isod).

Swyddfa Caerdydd: Plas Bute, Caerdydd CF10 5AL Tel:0845 8734 900

Swyddfa Bae Colwyn: 36 Prince’s Drive Bae Colwyn LL29 8LA Tel: 01492 533440 Facs: 01492 533677 Minicom: 01492 532288

Swyddfa Caerfyrddin: 6 Gardd Llydaw Jackson Lane Caerfyrddin SA3I 1QD Tel:01267 234248 Facs: 01267 233084

Gwefan: (yn cynnwys cylchgrawn honk) (Living Composers Project on the Internet) database of
information on contemporary composers. E-mail Dan Albertson at dalbertson ©nupediacom (British Music Rights) (includes honk magazine)

The Committee of Composers of Wales

Chair: Andrew Wilson-Dickson, composer,
Secretary: Audrey Morgan,
Administrator: Jon Petrie,
Treasurer: Ian Lawson, composer,
Eilir Owen-Griffiths, composer
Guto Puw, composer
Enid Luff, composer
Peter Reynolds, composer
Andrew Powell, composer

Ruth Leggett (Manager, Welsh Music Information Centre)
Keith Griffin (Manager, Ty Cerdd),
Gweithgor Cyfansoddwyr Cymru

Cadeirydd: Andrew Wilson-Dickson, cyfansoddwr,,
Ysgrifennydd: Audrey Morgan,
Gweinyddydd: Jon Petrie,
Trysorydd: Ian Lawson, cyfansoddwr,
Eilir Owen-Griffiths, cyfansoddwr
Guto Puw, cyfansoddwr
Peter Reynolds, cyfansoddwr
Enid Luff, cyfansoddwr

Gwefeistr: Tim Pearce:
Golygydd y cylchlythyr: Enid Luff:

Ruth Leggett (Arolygydd, Welsh Music Information Centre)
Keith Griffin (Arolygydd, Ty Cerdd),