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ECHOES OF THE WEEK. ♦

—I THE DEPUTY CORONERSHIP.…

OFF TO THE UNITED STATES.

i LLANELLY CHORAL SOCIETY…

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LLANELLY CHORAL SOCIETY ATTONYPANDY. THE PRIZE GOES TO DOWLAIS, t It seems almost inconceivable—however, it is all too true, that the Llanelly Choral Society in their rendering of the glee,™" The Lullaby of Life," at the Tonypandy Eisteddfod Ion Monday, actually flattened in the music of the concluding page. The Lullaby has from time inmemorial almost been regarded as a piece of music in which the Llanelly choir pre-eminently excels. Its finesse, its exquisite shading and its sweetness have been accepted as musical features peculiarly favourable to a masterly rendering"by the Llanelly Choral Society, Nor has this estimate of the strong points of 1 ;cal songsters been, in the main, incorrectly gauged. Keeping these facts in mind, it is, as we have already said, almost inconceivable that in this supremely harmonious glee the Llan- elly chorus should on Monday at the Tonypandy eisteddfod have flattened towards the close of the piece. The writer of this article was present at the rehearsal of the choir on Friday night last at the Market Hall, when the choir gave faultless renderings of the two competitive pieces, namely, 1\' 1 1 ,("T J .œ_4_.l. ivienaeissonn s massive cnorus XE nations onei IJV the Lord," and Leslie's exquisite part song The lullaby of life." Those present at the performance confidently expected that the Llanellyites would achieve success in the competition on the following Monday. The choir travelled to Tonypandy by special train, an arrangement kindly made by the the G.W.R. Company. Four choirs had entered, namely, Murthyr, Dowlais, Llanelly, and Llanpumpsaint. Only two, however, put in an appearance, Llanelly (led by Mr. John Thomas), and Dowlais (led by Mr. Harry Evans). The sole adjudicator was Dr. Risely, of Bristol. It will be remembered that the two selections named were the test pieces at the famous Brecon-cum- Patti National Eisteddfod in the early eighties when the Llanelly choir was led by Mr. R. C. Jenkins. On that occasion, the local choralists fell off in the heavy chorus, but in the rendering of the glee there wasn't a choir in the eisteddfod who came anything like near the Llanellyites in their masterly rendering of the Lullaby." On Monday in the competition at Tonypandy, the Llanelly choir gave a magnificent rendering of the heavy chorus, and they were also getting on beautifully with the glee until the last page, when an extraordinary thing happened: the tenors and sopranos flattened, and the accompanists had to stop. This, of course, doomed the hopes of the choir, and the prize naturally went to Dowlais. The prize offered was one hundred guineas and a handsome gold crown to the winning conductor. The fact that two such celebrated choirs were pitted against each other made the contest a very inter- esting one, and when the competition began there was a deep silence among the vast audience, now estimated to number fully 5,000 people. The first to sing was Llanelly, and they took the pieces in the order in which they were on the programme, while the Dowlais Choir reversed that order, and sang the "Lullaby" first. Immediately after the choirs sang, Dr. Risely stepped forward to give the award. He said he could not help feeling that this was the most critical moment of the present eisteddfod. He generally liked, so as to keep the attention of the audience, to give his declaration in reference to the second prize choir first and first last, but as there were only two choirs in this competition, it would be no use doing so now. It was an excellent performance all round, but he thought the audience would agree with iiim that he had not much difficulty in making up his mind. He could not say that he was affected by the applause 6f the audience because he never took that into consideration and he gave the first prize to the choir that had given the best singing, and that was the second (Dowlais). This announcement of course, led to deafening cheers, and when these had somewhat subsided, Dr. Risley said that, of course, he was bound to give a first prize, but he gave all praise that was due also to the first choir (Llanelly) for the way in which they sang, and he awarded them the seeond prize, £10.

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