Review: Festival of Voice – Bryn Terfel & Friends @ Llandaff Cathedral 

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An Evening with Bryn Terfel & Friends | Festival of Voice | Llandaff Cathedral | Tuesday 7th June 2016

As a critic, Festival of Voice has engulfed over a week of my schedule. I’m very happy about this, as the range of the musical tastes is large and the success of the festival is beginning to unravel.

A trip to Llandaff Cathedral is never underrated. One of the earliest Christian sites in the UK, the atmosphere is unlike anywhere else in Cardiff. Here, Bryn Terfel and Friends gave us a journey back to all thing Baroque and Classical with a marvellous concert of Handel, Bach and Mozart.

Terfel is a mighty bass-baritone. His robust singing can be just a little too much power and vigour in the gentility of a Handel aria. However, the rendition of Ombra mai fu, from Handel’s opera Xerxes was a highpoint, filled with large doses of serenity. His voice is better suited to Bach’s Ich habe genug (It is enough), a stirring cantata with oboe solo, gracefully played by Amy Roberts.

His posey of friends happened to be soprano Rebecca Evans and harpist Hannah Stone. The former displaying pristine arias in this Handel heavy concert. Even more Handel in his Harp Concerto, with Stone playing like it was written for her. The piece is laden with joyous moments of pristine melody and evocations of sheer beauty.

Sinfonia Cymru are as always stellar in their musicianship. The opening of a Bach Brandenburg Concerto is always to settle an audience down and bring in the concert presence.

Rating: 4 stars

Cover image credit: Festival of Voice website here.

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Preview: Festival of Voice – Cardiff’s Newest International Festival 

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Cover image credit: FOV website.


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