A5 Brass

Gwyn Owen - Trumpet
Thomas Fountain - Trumpet
Alexei Watkins - French Horn
Merin Rhyd - Trombone
Pete Cowlishaw - Tuba

Programme

Nadolig Pwy a Wyr - Ryan Davies (arr. Gwyn Owen)

O Holy Night (with Lisa Dafydd) - Adolphe Adam (trad.)

Song for Health - Steven Verhelst

Medley of Carols (Guess the Carol!)

Away in a Manger (with Tesni Jones) - (trad.)

"Sleepers Wake" 'Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme' - J.S. Bach (arr. Gwyn Owen)

We Wish you a Merry Christmas (trad.)

Gwyn Owen

Gwyn started playing the cornet in school lessons provided by the William Mathias Schools Music Service. He also played with the Menai Bridge and Beaumaris Brass Bands, Gwynedd & Mon Music Ensembles and the North Wales Youth Orchestra, and of course - Band Jazz Ysgol Tryfan. He went on to be a member and later principal cornet of the National Youth Brass Band of Wales and then principal trumpet of the National Youth Orchestra of Wales. He has also been a member of the European Youth Brass Band, and a reserve member of both the Gustav Mahler Youth Orchestra and European Youth Orchestra. He competed regularly in the Urdd and National Eisteddfod - winning the Instrumental Blue Riband Award in 2016. After studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London, Gwyn now works as a freelance musician with many of the UK’s professional orchestras and has recently trialled for Principal Trumpet positions with the Scottish Opera and the Ulster Orchestra. As well as being a member of Band Pres Llareggub, Gwyn also enjoys teaching and frequently arranges music for various groups!

Thomas Fountain

Thomas Fountain from Northamptonshire grew up playing the cornet becoming Principal Cornet of both the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain and European Youth Brass Band. Thomas went on to study the trumpet at the Royal Academy of Music where he gained his Bachelor of Music degree and is currently completing his Masters at the Royal College of Music. Thomas enjoys playing in various groups and styles and has appeared with ensembles such as the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, renowned brass group ‘Superbrass’ and ‘The Who’.

Alexei Watkins

Born in 1995, London-based French Horn player Alexei Watkins graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with a Master of Arts Degree (DisGncGon) in September 2018 having been awarded the Dennis Brain Prize.

As a soloist, Alexei has performed recitals extensively across the UK at venues including St John’s Smith Square, the Buxton InternaGonal FesGval, Blackheath Halls, Hampton Court Palace, Southwark Cathedral, the Foundling Museum and Charlton House, Greenwich. Recently he has performed the BriYen Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings both in the UK and abroad as well as Mozart’s 3rd and 4th Horn Concertos. In 2019 Alexei won the University of London Symphony Orchestra Concerto CompeGGon.

He is a keen orchestral player and has guested as Principal Horn with Glyndebourne Touring Orchestra, English NaGonal Opera and RTÉ NaGonal Symphony Orchestra. He has also played with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Hallé, London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, the BBC Scobsh Symphony Orchestra, English Chamber Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, London SinfonieYa, BriYen Sinfonia and was Principal Horn of the BriYen Pears Orchestra (2015-2017).

Merin Rhyd

Merin Rhyd is a trombonist currently studying for his Masters at the Royal Academy of Music under Dudley Bright, Peter Moore and Matthew Gee. Whilst studying he is also a London based freelancer and has worked with The London Brass Ensemble and the BBC Concert Orchestra. During the last two years he has been on pathway schemes with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the English National Opera. He has recently become a London Philharmonic Orchestra Future First.

Merin appears regularly with the Bone-afide Trombone Quartet who won the 2020 International Trombone Association Quartet Competition.

Pete Cowlishaw

Pete Cowlishaw is a Tuba player originally from Wrexham who is currently in his final year of his Postgraduate studies at the Royal Northern College of Music. Before moving to Manchester, Peter completed his undergraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music studying under Patrick Harrild. He has represented Wales in the European Youth Brass Band and has been a finalist in the National Eisteddfod Blue Riband Award. He also enjoys chamber music, winning competitions with A5 Brass and IBEX Brass. Pete is also a member of Band Pres Llareggub. Highlights with the band have included a trip to New Orleans in 2019 and winning a Welsh BAFTA earlier this year.

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