Angharad Lisabeth Rees is a classically trained soprano from Pontrhydyfen in South Wales, a little village in the Afan Valley, made famous as the birth place of Richard Burton, Ivor Emmanuelle and Rebecca Evans.
Angharad started singing when she was just five years old. At the age of eight, she started to undertake singing lessons under the tuition of the late Madam Myra Rees of Loughor, Swansea. By the age of twelve, Angharad knew that she wanted to pursue a professional singing career and went on to study with the internationally renowned opera soprano, Patricia O’Neill. To this day she continues to study under her expertise. Angharad has won many titles throughout her singing career at the Urdd National Eisteddfod, The Royal National Eisteddfod of Wales and Llangollen International Eisteddfod. She was also one of the youngest students to be accepted into the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama in Cardiff, where she successfully completed a BA Honours Degree in Music Performance. She has also been awarded scholarships that have previously been won by stars such as Katherine Jenkins, Bryn Terfel, Rhys Meirion and Shân Cothi.
Angharad’s first break came in March 2000, when she was asked to perform to the Nepalese Royal Family, alongside the late Delme Bryn Jones. She made her international debut in 2001 when she was invited to sing in Hollywood, Los Angeles. In 2005, Angharad performed with the Welsh National Opera singer Aled Hall and Cardiff Philharmonic Choir, conducted by Alun Guy at the University Concert Hall in Cardiff. In July 2007, she performed with West End and Broadway musical star Peter Karrie and worked alongside his Musical Director John Quirk on one of Peter Karrie’s tour shows entitled ‘A Man and his Music’.
The highlight of her career came in 2008 when she won the prestigious W. Towyn Roberts Scholarship at the Royal National Eisteddfod in Cardiff. In August 2009, the Royal National Eisteddfod of Wales awarded Angharad the honour of becoming a member of the Gorsedd of Bards. She was recognised for her achievement of winning the prestigious W. Towyn Roberts Scholarship and for her services to Welsh music. Honorary members of the Gorsedd of Bards include: Bryn Terfel CBE, Rebecca Evans, Ioan Gruffudd, Gareth Edwards CBE, Robyn McBride, Nigel Owens, Tanni Grey Thompson DBE, Shane Williams MBE, Stephen Jones and Connie Fisher. Angharad’s chosen Bardic name is ‘Angharad Rhyd-y-fen’ after the famous village of Pontrydyfen where she was born and raised.
In October 2009 Angharad performed live at the Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff (formally known as the CIA) representing Wales at an international ceremony before an audience of 18,000 people. The event was attended by dignitaries from the Welsh Assembly Government and other countries from across the globe. In 2010 Angharad was invited to act as the official singer at the opening and crowning ceremonies of the National Eisteddfod of Wales in Ebbw Vale. This is a very prestigious accolade, offered only to Wales’ best singers. In the summer of 2010 Angharad appeared in scenes from Offenbach’s The Tales of Hoffman as Olympia (The Doll) and Antonia, alongside some of the world`s best international repertoire coaches and conductors.
In 2011 Angharad was busy performing at live events for 96.4FM The Wave, including singing at the switching on of the Christmas lights at Neath, Port Talbot and Pontardawe and performing at the ‘Cash For Kids’ Christmas Ball. In 2012 Angharad was invited to judge at the Urdd National Eisteddfod, after which she took a coveted judging spot on the Welsh Factor, the biggest talent competition in South Wales. In September 2012, Angharad performed the role of Cunegonde in scenes from the Operetta Candide.
In 2013 Angharad was asked to help raise the awareness of the Poppy Appeal by singing at various events that were held throughout South West Wales to support the cause, this is a charity that is close to her heart. Angharad also had the huge honour of being asked to become a patron for the Leon Montanari heart fund, here she continues to support the charity through her music.
In 2014 Angharad had the prestigious honour of being named ‘Champion for the Poppy Appeal’. She also performed at the Armed Forces Day open air event that was held at Castle Gardens, Swansea and streamed throughout the UK. Angharad has also had the opportunity to perform a recital on the Glanfa Stage at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff.
In 2015 Angharad performed at the prestigious Roof Gardens in London, owned by Sir Richard Branson. She also fulfilled a lifetime dream by performing a number of songs from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit musical ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ alongside her idol and most popular Phantom to date, Peter Karrie. Angharad also had the honour to sing at the switching on of the Christmas lights in her home town of Neath. Angharad also returned to her roots by performing at Swansea Grand Theatre, it was here that Angharad first started performing on the big stage at the tender age of 8 years old.
In 2016 Angharad appeared on ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent, where she had four yes’s and a standing ovation off all four celebrity judges, plus the audience at the Dominion Theatre, London, after her rendition of ‘Climb Every Mountain’ from The Sound of Music. Following her success on the show Angharad had the opportunity to record at the world famous Berwick Street Studios in London. She has joined an elite group of musicians who have recorded at the studios including Queen, David Bowie, Oasis and The Sex Pistols.
This year has also been a very busy year for Angharad, she has been working on some new and exciting projects, all will be revealed in 2018.
Angharad has an extensive repertoire ranging from opera, classical, classical crossover, contemporary and musical theatre. Angharad regularly performs in Welsh, English, Italian, French, German and Latin.