Euphonium replaces cello at Welsh Proms
On Saturday 21st July the Welsh Proms season got underway with its ‘First Night’ concert performance at St. David’s Hall in Cardiff. The concert was a tribute to the centenary of World War One and featured British classics by Walton, Vaughn-Williams and Elgar in the first half with Sir Karl Jenkins’ ‘The Armed Man’ following the interval.
The concert was conducted by Owain Arwel-Hughes CBE, the founder of the Welsh Proms and featured the Orchestra of the Welsh National Opera as well as four choirs and a glittering array of soloists. Unexpectedly amongst the solo line up was euphonium virtuoso, David Childs who received the invitation just a few days before the event. Owain Arwel-Hughes commented, “Unfortunately the WNO principal cellist suffered a shoulder injury in the days leading up to the opening night and so the opportunity to feature another soloist arose. Having performed the ‘Benedictus’ with him on several occasions in the past, including at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod last year, I immediately thought of David Childs, and am delighted that he was able to accept my invitation to join us for what was a very special performance indeed.”
A spokesperson for the Welsh Proms continued, “The performance of Sir Karl Jenkins’ ‘Armed Man’ was singularly exceptional – an absolute highlight of the evening was David Childs in the beautifully sonorous Benedictus. Over 1100 people stood to applaud the electric and emotional performance.”
David Childs is a familiar face to Welsh Proms audiences, having performed at the event on six occasions previously, including three world premiere concerto performances. David’s appearance at the Welsh Proms came just one week after his performance at the BBC Proms with the BBC Concert Orchestra, and fresh from a concerto premiere in Tokyo, Japan and recent recording at Abbey Road Studios with Sir Bryn Terfel for his new Deutsche Gramophone CD, which will be released later this year.
Speaking to BBW about his appearance David said, “For the past 16 years the Welsh Proms and Owain Arwel Hughes have been a phenomenal advocate for the euphonium and myself, and so I was delighted to be able to assist on this occasion by featuring in this special WW1 centenary performance of The Armed Man. As luck would have it I had planned to be at home in Wales that weekend anyway for my niece and now God Daughter’s Christening on Sunday, so It was my pleasure to once again share the stage with Owain, together with Shan and the WNO for the Benedictus.”