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St. David's Society of Minnesota

United to Celebrate and Explore Welsh Culture

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Our Annual Events
St. David's Day Banquet

Every spring the Society celebrates St. David's Day on the Saturday closest to March 1. In 2017, we celebrated the work of Mereddyd Evans on March 4th at the Ramada Plaza in Minneapolis.

Annual Picnic

Every summer the Society members meet to elect board members and officers and enjoy food and games -- and the outdoors.

Gymanfa Ganu

Every fall the Society carries on the Welsh tradition of singing together in four-part harmony in a "Gymanfa Ganu."  We sing tradition hymns  as well as familiar folk tunes.

Holiday Tea

Every winter in December, society members gather to sing together in four-part harmony, tell stories, listen to other members make music, and enjoy the sweet and savory treats that everyone has brought. 

Past Events

Upcoming Events

Recital by Jeremy Huw Williams, Welsh baritone and Paula Fan, piano

Monday, October 30 at 6 PM at the University of Minnesota School of Music, West Bank Campus. Ultan Recital Hall, located in Ferguson Hall
, 2106 Fourth Street South, Minneapolis, MN 55455

The Society is excited to welcome this Welsh opera singer of international repute to the Twin Cities. Be sure to put this on your calendar! Free admission.  Songs will include works by Welsh, French and American composers, including our own David Evan Thomas’s song cycle Heard in a Violent Ward, based on writings by John Clare.  There will also be a reception in Ferguson Hall after the concert. Pay parking available in nearby 21st Ave Ramp. Information and map here.

Sponsored by the UM School of Music and the St. David’s Society of Minnesota.

Jeremy Huw Williams
Welsh baritone Jeremy Huw Williams has appeared in sixty operatic roles as a principal singer with Welsh National Opera. He has given performances at major venues in North and South American, Australia, Hong Kong and most European countries. He is renowned as an exponent of contemporary music, having given premieres of works by Hoddinott, Mathias, John Tavener, Michael Berkeley and Huw Watkins. Williams frequently records for BBC Radio 3 and his many commercial recordings include eight solo discs of songs. He received the inaugural Sir Geraint Evans Award from the Welsh Music Guild, given annually to a person or persons who have made a significant contribution to Welsh music. Williams studied at St. John’s College, Cambridge, at the National Opera Studio, and with April Cantelo.  In 2011, he was awarded the degree Honorary Doctor of Music from the University of Aberdeen.

Paula Fan
Pianist Paula Fan has performed as soloist and chamber musician on five continents. She joined members of Beijing’s Central Philharmonic Orchestra for the first concert of Western chamber music since the Cultural Revolution, and was the first-ever accompanist-coach invited by the Chinese Ministry of Culture. Dr. Fan has recorded seventeen albums and has broadcast for the BBC, NPR and Radio Television China. She has coached and accompanied singers from the world’s great opera houses, and is a specialist in wind chamber music. She is a committed Earthwatch volunteer and a founding member of Solar Storytellers, a solar-powered piano trio sponsored by the Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy. Dr. Fan is pianist with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and the first Regents’ Professor from the College of Fine Arts at the Fred Fox School of Music at the University of Arizona.   

Local event of interest: Family History Fair

Saturday, October 28, 9am - 3pm at the Minneapolis Central Library

Connect with expert genealogists and learn about state, local and library resources; learn to identify clues to your family history; find out how to use and evaluate DNA for family connections, and more. Visit resource tables, attend presentations and learn how to start your family genealogy. For more information and to register, visit http://hclib.org/about/news/2017/september/family-history.

Sgwrs Cymraeg, Welsh Language Discussion Group

Sunday, November 12, at 2:00 pm at 2393 Bourne Ave. in St. Paul

All levels are welcome. We do some conversation, some drills (suitable for beginning levels), and some reading / translation. We meet the second Sunday of every month alternating between Bloomington and St. Paul.

Well-Read Dragons Book Group

Saturday, December 2, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm at Davanni’s in Arden Hills, 3673 Lexington Ave. N.

Come to discuss Choice of Short Stories by Mary-Ann Constantine.

Mary-Ann Constantine works on Romantic-era Welsh literature in both Welsh and English. She took her first degree in English Literature at Clare College, Cambridge (1988–91), and stayed on to do a PhD in Breton folklore. She moved to Aberystwyth in 1995 and held a succession of Research Fellowships in the Welsh Department, University of Aberystwyth. During this period she taught various topics in Welsh and Celtic Studies, and continued her work on the ballad tradition in Brittany. Mary-Ann’s work is concerned with the relations between and mutual influence of the different cultures and languages of Britain (and to some extent beyond) in the late-C18th and early-C19th centuries.  Mary-Ann has published two collections of short stories: The Breathing (Planet, 2008) and All the Souls (Seren, 2013). (Excerpted from the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies website.)

Here's the book list for future discussions:
Feb. 3 - The Long Dry by Cynan Jones
April 7 - Bred of Heaven by Jasper Rees 
June 2 - The Vegetarian Tigers of Paradise by Crystal Jeans
Aug. 4 - Choice of Poetry by a Welsh author

Gathering Place and Details

Visitors are always welcome, whether or not they've ben able to read the book. The group meets at at Davanni’s in Arden Hills, 3673 Lexington Ave. N., 55126. Davanni’s is south of 694, (check for construction beforehand) just south of Cub Foods.  We gather at 11:30 for lunch and conversation, then dig into the book talk at noon. Please plan to purchase lunch at Davanni’s. Those purchases allow us to use the party room free of charge.Book Shelf Dan Proud.png

Questions? Contact David Conradi-Jones, dae29cj@gmail.com or 612-247-1107. 
 

LINK TO List of Past BOOK CLUB Readings

Holiday Tea

Saturday, December 9, 2 - 4 pm at University Lutheran Church of Hope, 601-13th Ave. SE, Minneapolis.

Our annual celebration with music, poetry, stories, and of course, lots of treats.  Stay tuned for more details.

VocalEssence Performances featuring music and text by two Society members, David Evan Thomas and Jean Greenwood

Saturday, December 2 at 7:30pm at Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church, Apple Valley, MN
Friday, December 8 at 7:30pm at Roseville Lutheran Church, Roseville, MN
Saturday, December 9 at 4:00pm at Plymouth Congregational Church, Minneapolis, MN
Sunday, December 10 at 4:00pm at Plymouth Congregational Church, Minneapolis, MN

Featuring "Carol of the Night", music by David Evan Thomas and text by Jean Greenwood. David Evan Thomas won the 20th Annual VocalEssence Welcome Christmas Carol Contest with this piece.  Born in Rochester, New York, David studied at Northwestern University, the Eastman School, and with Dominick Argento at the University of Minnesota. His work has been commissioned by the Minnesota Orchestra, honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and published by ECS, Augsburg Fortress and MorningStar. David has been a member of the Plymouth Congregational Church Choir and Plymouth Music Series chorus. He writes about music for The Schubert Club.

Welsh Events in Other Places

North American Festival of Wales (NAFOW)

Aug. 30–Sept. 2, 2018 in Washington, D.C. Make your calendars for North America's largest gathering of the Welsh and friends, featuring the 87th Welsh Gymanfa Ganu and much more. Visit IHQ@thewnaa.org