Male voice choir tunes up for Royal Albert Hall

Members of the Solent Male Voice Choir in Portsmouth
Members of the Solent Male Voice Choir in Portsmouth
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IT’S A world-renowned concert venue – and the Royal Albert Hall will soon host a concert by a male choir from Havant.

The Solent Male Voice Choir will join 12 other choirs at the famous London concert hall next month for one of the world’s premier massed choral concerts.

The 25th London Welsh Festival of Male Choirs will see nearly 800 voices from singers across the globe, including the USA, Hong Kong and the UK, perform on October 15.

Solent Male are one of three Hampshire choirs taking to the stage – groups from Romsey and Rushmoor are also participating.

The group, which practises at St Faith’s Church, has been rehearsing for a year to ensure everyone is pitch-perfect for the sold-out concert.

The event will see all choirs join to perform songs in Welsh, as well as favourites sung in English such as The Rose, Somewhere and Handel’s Sound An Alarm.

But learning to sing in another language has had its difficulties for the 33 members of Solent Male Voice Choir.

Musical director Geoff Porter said: ‘Welsh pronunciation has been the biggest challenge.

‘We have had to use phonetic pronunciation and that takes some learning.

‘It will be a big night for all concerned and we are already facing a sell-out audience of up to 5,000 people, which includes Welsh Male Voice Choir patrons and guests from all over the world including diplomats and politicians.

‘We’re all very excited and it will be the culmination of a year’s hard rehearsals.’

Councillor Tim Pike, who represents St Faith’s Ward, said: ‘It’s great to hear the news that the choir will be performing at the Royal Albert Hall.

‘Not only is it an excellent achievement for the members of the group, but it is also brilliant that it is raising the profile of organisations in the Havant area.’

The special 25th festival will be held at the Royal Albert Hall on Saturday, October 15.

It will feature 13 male voice choirs from five countries and four young Welsh soloists as well as the London Welsh Male Voice Choir.