25 July 2004
BOYS FROM THE WEST HEAD EAST
Orpheus in the Orient
The Morriston Orpheus Choir has been confirmed as the first Welsh male voice choir to have visited Taiwan.
The Choir sang at the 2000 plus seater National Concert Hall, in the capital Taipei. They were performing to an invited audience celebrating the 25th anniversary of the formation of the Institute for Information Industry (III). The International New Aspect Culture and Education Foundation sponsored the visit.
The invitation to visit Taiwan was received from Dr G J Huang National Policy Adviser to the President of Taiwan and Vice President of III. Dr Huang spent 18 years working at University College Swansea and has been a long time admirer of the Choir.
Musical Director Alwyn Humphreys produced a varied programme for the Choir’s first performance to a Far Eastern audience. As well as the traditional Welsh favourites and songs from the shows the repertoire included two Taiwanese items to which the audience responded with standing ovations
The guest soloist was Swansea born Samantha Louise Cole and Joy Amman Davies (piano) and Rob Nicholls (organ) accompanied the Choir.
The Choir was delighted to be featured prominently in the local media with coverage of the visit on national television, press and radio including coverage on the China Times web site.
The Choir also attended a Reception hosted by the Welsh Society and supported by the British Council and the Welsh Development Agency. The Choir performed an open-air mini concert at the Far Eastern Plaza Hotel. The Orpheus members contributed to the fund raising appeal for the victims of the recent typhoon in southern Taiwan.
Speaking on the eve of the Choir’s departure from Taipei, choir spokesman Clive Williams said
“ The visit has been an outstanding success. We were privileged to have received an invitation to participate in the celebration of one of the key players in the economic success of Taiwan and hope our visit has helped to raise the profile of Wales.
Throughout our time in Taiwan we have been received with warmth and kindness and our only regret has been that our time here has been so short. We have made many friends and would love to return in the not too distant future.”
The choir returns to the UK on Monday 26 July.
Contact details and photographs
( From 1900 on 26 July )
01792 587775 or 07974 722815