Welcome to Llandaff Music - a platform for the world to explore the story of the remarkable, ironic and often vulnerable last few years. This website enables us to confidently share our point of view with you, whatever your own may be.
Llandaff Music is an independent company and the purpose of this website is to share a point of view and foster community. As such, content is not approved by Llandaff Cathedral, its Dean and Chapter, or any other body.
Llandaff is adjacent to Cardiff, the capital city of the country of Wales, in the UK. There has been a choral tradition since Dean Vaughan of Llandaff re-founded a choir school in 1880. In his realised dream, Llandaff was the only Anglican cathedral with a dedicated choir school and full time professional choir of purely boys and men in Wales.
Four days before Christmas 2013 - having lived 133 years, and with breathless irony just 42 days after the £1.7m organ was completed - his dream was over. The Church in Wales, led by Archbishop Barry Morgan, announced mysterious "new funding arrangements" for the choir. As a result of these new arrangements, Llandaff Cathedral made its assistant organist and all the adult singers redundant. Only a few boys remain. This Easter, some services were sung by the Llandaff Cathedral Parish Choir. Future plans for major religious festivals have not been announced.
When llandaffmusic.org.uk was setup, the potential of the Cathedral Choir, rather than its achievement, was in our minds. With that mysterious gift of hindsight, as matters stand "Majestas" becomes the single lasting record of the recent era. Listening now, the music is performed with the verve of a choir with a powerful future. The sound youthful, vigorous, hopeful and soaring high above the troubles of the day into a new more glorious world of the spiritual, "ever praising thee, o God."
The last two years, since "Majestas" was recorded, have been turbulent and perplexing. Music, and musicians, were in the middle of a media storm over recordings and broadcast. Dean Janet Henderson resigned after 56 days. Her successor, Dean Gerwyn Capon, begs for money after not much longer in post. Money problems abound. But the spiritual problems are far more damaging.
We offer an insight into our recent history and experience, the story of music at Llandaff, as a window on the apparently inexplicable and somewhat crisis ridden events. Music at Llandaff has dramatically changed and it is right that the purpose of this website evolves in response.
It is, after all, bizarre to fundraise for a £1.7m organ then promptly make the adult choir redundant. The recently reborn Llandaff Festival surprised many by its impact, confident patronage, creative artistic direction and financial contribution. But less than one year after the "New Festival" ends, professional music in Llandaff is poverty stricken.
In another irony, demand to hear the Choir has soared too. "Majestas" the gift box version was distributed exclusively by Amazon, who are out of stock. We are working on this; in the meantime single tracks or the whole album are available as downloads from iTunes.
We are grateful for your visit however fleeting and welcome all equally.
Click below to visit the main Llandaff Cathedral website