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Proms double for Childs

David Childs gets armed to make a late substitution appearance at the Welsh Proms — just days after his BBC Promenade Concert performance at the Royal Albert Hall.

Proms
  David Childs has stepped in to make his seventh Welsh Proms appearance

This coming Saturday evening (21st July), the Welsh Proms season will open at St David's Hall in Cardiff with conductor Owain Arwel Hughes CBE leading the Welsh National Opera Orchestra, in a performance of Sir Karl Jenkins' masterful work, 'The Armed Man — A Mass for Peace'.

The central feature is the haunting 'Benedictus', which was for this performance was to feature the solo cello. However, due to the WNO soloist suffering a shoulder injury yesterday, euphonium star David Childs has stepped in as a last minute replacement.

Urgent contact

"We wanted to do something special to mark the centenary of the end of the First World War, and immediately 'The Armed Man', was it," stated Owain Arwel Hughes CBE to 4BR.

"Karl Jenkins and I spoke at length on how we could make this performance with WNO truly special with the addition of a Muezzin from the local Syrian community, who will perform the second movement, the 'Adhaan', or 'Call to Prayer'.

However, news arrived that the WNO principal cellist had suffered the injury and would be unable to perform, and so we urgently contacted David.

Having performed the 'Benedictus' with him on several occasions, including the Llangollen International Eisteddfod last year, I was delighted that he was able to accept my invitation to join us for what will be a very special performance indeed."

Seventh appearance

David has performed at the Welsh Proms on six previous occasions, including three world premiere concerto performances.

He will now add to that just days after his critically acclaimed appearance with the BBC Concert Orchestra at the BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall, and fresh from a concerto premiere in Tokyo, and a recent recording at the famous Abbey Road Studios with Sir Bryn Terfel for his new Deutsche Gramophone CD.

Madrid flight

David told 4BR: "For the past 16 years Owain Arwel Hughes has been a phenomenal advocate for the euphonium at the Welsh Proms, so I'm delighted to be able to help out on this occasion. Luck was with us though as I had just arranged a flight to go to Madrid on Monday, so this was the only weekend I've had off for two months.

I couldn't say no and following a memorable occasion at the Proms in London it's great to make it a 'double' in Cardiff."

However, news arrived that the WNO principal cellist had suffered the injury and would be unable to perform, and so we urgently contacted DavidOwain Arwel Hughes CBE

Time and place

The 'Armed Man Prom' takes place on Saturday, July 21st (7.30pm) at St David's Hall, Cardiff.

The Welsh Proms run from July 21st to 28th and will also feature a massed brass band and male choir concert on Wednesday July 25th and the release of a new Brass & Voices of Wales CD, conducted by Owain Arwel Hughes.

Full information on all Welsh Proms events is available at the Proms website www.welshproms.com

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Phil Lawrence

ARCM PGRNCM MFTCL ARCM B.Mus.
Composer and conductor