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Eisteddfod at the Queen's…

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Eisteddfod at the Queen's Palacc. A First-Class Musical Event. The Eisteddfod at the Queen's Palace on Easter Monday was of more than local interest seeing that the competitors were drawn from Lancashire, Cheshire, the Midlands and all pans of North Wales indeed local competitors were rather the exception than the rule. From the musical standpoint the Eisteddfod was an unqualified success: indeed, competent judges assert that nothing better in the way of competi- tive music has been heard in the town since the National Eisteddfod. Some bands of more than local fame were attracted by the brass band competition and most of the Male Voice choirs com- peting had entered the lists at much more important eisteddfodau, such as the National, Chester and so forth. In the afternoon the audience was not all that could be desired, but ir is to be hoped that the dense crowd in the evening will ensure the function being just as successful financially as it was musically. A regret- table feature was the noticeable absence of local people from the audience. It has been computed that not more than fifty Rhylites passed the turnstiles and surely that is a fact to be deplored from more than one point of view. The Eisteddfod was wnder the capable directorship of Mr E W Parry, who had also discharged the secretarial duties with his usual skill and energy. Mr Bryan Warhurst was the accompanist, and the adjudicators were Mr E D Lloyd (who judged the vocal music) and Mr J Partington, of Bolton (who judged the bands). It only remains to be said that the entry was an exceptionally large one, and much weeding out had to be done at the preliminary tests in the morning. O AFTERNOON MEETING. There was not perhaps so large an audience at the afternoon meeting as there might have been, but the glorious weather natuially accounted for that, people pre- ferring the sunny "front" to music in doors. The chief feature of the after- noon's programme was undoubtedly the band contest. Nine bands entered and each one of them appeared before the public, the quick-step test on the promen- ade adopted at previous eisteddfodau being abandoned. The test piece was Round's descriptive Welsh fantasia Llewelyn," a composition abounding, in difficulties and demanding more than average skill to interpret. In giving his adjudication Mr Partington said that the first prize band stood out head and shoulders above all the rest and gave a truly masterly rendition of the piece. The principal fault with the other bands was the weakness of attack which they displayed. Good time and tone were also lacking in several of the bands. His awards were as follows :— I, Crossfield's Soap Works 2, Birkenhead Borough 3, Cheetham Hill and 4, Parr's St Peter's, Rhos. The tenor solo com- petition was won by Mr Llewelyn Jones, of Old Colwyn Mr J W Davies, Pentre Voelas, taking the second prize. The Eivion Quartette won the first prize in the mixed quartette competition. EVENING MEETING. The Palace ballroom was thronged from floor to ceiling in the evening and the greatest enthusiasm was evinced in the proceedings. First came the contralto solo competition which was crowded out of the afternoon's programme, owing to the length of time monopolised by the band contest. It was won by Miss Ellen Jones, Mold. Miss Williams, Temperance Hotel, Bangor: being second. The first prize for the best rendition of a soprano solo fell to Miss Louie James—so well known in Rhyl and district,—the second prize going to Miss E Griffiths, of Liverpool. Many couples entered for the duett competition and after some close work Messrs W E Jones (Conway) and Llewelyn Jones (Old Colwyn) were declared victors. The premier feature of the evening's programme came next in the shape of the Male Voice Choir competition. Eight choirs entered, coming from as far distant as Crewe and Southport. The test piece was Rilles' "Martyrs of the Arena," and the prize of £20 was divided between the Manchester Urphens (conducted by Mr Nesbitt), and Colwyn Bay (conducted by Mr Bryan Warhurst), the judge declaring the result to be a tie. First honours in the baritone or bass solo competition fell to Mr R Roberts (Halkyn), Mr Price Da vies (Old Colwyn) being second. ADJUDIC ATION ON MALE VOICE CHOIRS. Mr E D Lloyd's adjudicatioll on the male voice chair competition was as iollows: — Ko. 1 (Biynibo and Briiugliioii). The voices in this choir were rather grood. They were nut rich, and did not blend well enough to produce, perfect harmony. The se- cond 'tenuis sang too open in some pants; the reading was correct enun- ciation, clear: expression, good, but carried too far in many part. the phrasing .was very neat; intonation very good 011 the whole. There were a few cadences in which the intonation was not quite pure. Accent was not enough marked. The tune was good in the first movement, but much too ■hurried in the second, and also in some •other quick movements which followed. V? not finished enough; nHack, A|1 ^"°od, if anything there was a k\n- 1 *f^Cf at °verdoin £ the cadences were *° the choir discipline, xd v 1 -pi ttuai'tet'te was not very sitc- < tss. u n> was a fairly good attempt, mit It lacked many important things which contribute largely to an artistic <md intelligent perf0nuau<.0 0±- au borate piece of this kind. Xu. '2 (Manchester Orpheus). I,, this choir we have very fine sets of voices, part producing a square and solid 1one, which never wavered. The lead- ing was perfect: enunciation, clear thr-oug-bout: expression, excellent, especially- in forte passages: phrasing* always clear and intelligent intona- tion, perfect: accent was particularly well marked, and splendid effect was attained in many phrases through it fhe -time was always steady, and the style was most finished. The conduc- tor had the choir under full control, and they never seemed to fail one point. The quartette was rendered with good •tasie and excellent effect. The choir finished in tune and without the aid of the piano. This was a most creditable peiformance i li 1 u tighout. No. 3 (Colwyn Bay). -W? have in this choir again voices of very good quality, blending perfectly together, the tone produced being exceptionally pure; reading was perfect enunciation, very good; expression marks attended to and performed in exquisite style; and ,the pitch was correct, with the excep- tion of a trifle of impurity which crept in towards the end of the quartette; accent .was well marked, and rhythm well defined; the time wa. good throughout, no hurrying in any part: style was very finished indeed; the cadences being exceedingly clean, and artistic in delivery; attack never fal- tered discipline was excell'ent; the quartette was rendered in very good style; the finishing bars were, how- ever, not so pure as we would desire in 4- tune. This was a capital performance throughout, most artistic in style, and iiiiisiciaiill)7- in colouring"; there was a most welcome freshness of tone through- out, the performance, and every detail in expression seemed to impart new life to the choir, and to the piece. I only wish they had taken it without the piano. No. 4 (Mostyn LAY -the voices in this choir were much more scattered, and failed to produce the tone which is essential in a piece of this kind. There was a fairly good attempt at expression, but this was invariably marred bv the impurity of tone prevalent; the choir lost the pitch soon after they commenced first page—and ditf- not regain it to the end, altliough they had the piano to start with. Accent was overdone oc- casionally, and the time was not steady. The soli parts was only fairly done. rl he effect on me wa.s that of a young choir doing Its best, but the effort was so much greater than the task. No. 5 (Crewe A 1st tenors were a bit mouthy" in production in this choir, otherwise the voices were good; reading, perfect; enunciation was aLways good; expression, very good in forte passages, but not so good in piano passages; the phrasing was correct, and intelligent; the pitch was well sustained, and the intonation pure; the tempo was good; style, good; and attack 011 the whole was good, but all did not seem to take up the conductor s points with the precision they should discipline, very good in the quartette the fiist bass was much too prominent, and the first tenor too weak and timid, and his tone was peculiar. This performance was that of an experienced and able choir, but some carelessness continually crept into the rendering which should othexwiss approach a very high standard. No. (i (G-walia). The tone produced by this choir was fairly good reading i was good; enunciation rather good; expression only fair; phrasing was good; the pitch was sustained well, but we had some notes here and there which were not quite perfect in tune, the F (sharp) on page 0 was bad time was good and steady attack was ex- ceptionally good, and there was good discipline. The quartette was only fairly good. This was a small force, but holding its own very well indeed, and with a little more training- would have attained a high standard. If I was to pick out the three best performances they are those of Nos. 2, and 5 the cailessness of some mem- bers of S (). 5 compels me to put this choir again on one side, and the com- petition xests between Nos. 2 and 3, and it is a very keen struggle indeed; ithe chief feature of o. 2 is solidity of tone, which, of course, favours forte passages; the chief element in Xo. a again is freshness of tone, which favours ly :,tli forte and piano passages alike. Had the piece been of a lighter charac- ter, I would' Irave no hesitation what- ever in a warding the whole prize to No. o, but taking the character of the piece into consideration, and combining this with the fact that No. 2 saug without accompaniment, and No. M with, I am obliged to divide the prize between the two.

VlORDS OF WISDOM.

Prestatyn Urban District ."'.Council.

Y Golofn Gymraeg.

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