8th July, 2016
by Eryl Crump, Daily Post
Opera superstar Bryn Terfel has joined forces with an arts-loving care organisation to launch a search for the world’s best young singers. The announcement about the prestigious competition was made at last night’s concert at the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod. Pendine Park care organisation will donate £5,000 a year from 2017-19 as first prize for the Llangollen International Young Singer competition. Meanwhile the Bryn Terfel Foundation will be contributing £2,500 for the singer who comes second and the festival itself will be giving £1,500 towards the third place prize. The aim is to develop the existing Voice of the Future contest to attract talented young singers from right across the world.
Eisteddfod Musical Director Eilir Owen Griffiths said increasing the annual prize pot will “catapult the competition into a whole new league”. He said: “This truly remarkable gesture by Pendine Park and the Bryn Terfel Foundation will lead to a big surge in interest for new vocal talent. “The timing is especially appropriate as we will be celebrating our 70th anniversary in 2017.
Pendine Park are long-standing supporters of the festival. Proprietor Mario Kreft said: “I firmly believe in the vital role played by music and arts in social care and as part of our enrichment programme for people with dementia we regularly have world-class musicians from the Hallé orchestra and Welsh National Opera as part of our enrichment workshops and staff training and development programme.”
Bryn Terfel said he was delighted his charitable foundation was backing the beefed up competition. The bass-baritone from Pant Glas said: “Competing at Llangollen played an important role in my development as a young singer and I am always pleased to have the opportunity to return to perform here
“I am passionate about nurturing the talent of young singers through my foundation , and, with the extra prize money and the prestige that brings, the competition will be able to attract the best of the world’s young singing talent."
The Llangollen International Young Singer competition will be open to soloists under 28 and the prize is intended to help them advance their professional career. During the competition, singers will deliver a contrasting programme of up to eight minutes of music.