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Young Neath Port Talbot singers raise their voices to raise money for Ukraine

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Young singers from Neath Port Talbot schools are starring in a video of their inspirational cover of You’re the Voice, the song made famous by John Farnham.

The moving cover version by The Cerdd NPT Music Service and pupils from Neath Port Talbot schools was recorded at Cwmtawe Community School to raise money for humanitarian aid for Ukraine.

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Kirstie Roberts, a singer and singing teacher who works with the Cerdd NPT Music Service, along with colleagues, drove the project forward.

She said: “Just a few weeks after hearing Ukraine had been invaded by Russia, feeling frustrated and helpless that more needed to be done, I wanted to raise money to send to the families and children struggling to survive under constant threat but had no idea where to start!

“So, after not having sung together for two years due to the Covid pandemic, we gathered some of our talented and inspirational young singers in local schools together after deciding we could all help by raising voices, hearts and funds for the people of Ukraine.

“In just three and a half weeks 60 singers, six string players and a four-piece band had to learn their parts before coming together with a camera man and sound engineer to perform it for the first time at Cwmtawe Community School.

“The entire team had one chance to perform You’re the Voice and get it right and our Welsh children sang their hearts out for the children of Ukraine. Please watch this astonishing video and share as widely as you can. These children gave their time, passion and everything they had. If you can spare some time and money to help we would all be so grateful…as would the children in Ukraine.

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“I’m so delighted to finally share our GoFundMe link and YouTube video of our incredible and inspirational singers of Cerdd NPT Music, Neath Port Talbot, raising their voices, hearts and funds for the children of Ukraine.”

The choral arrangement for the song was by Mark De-Lisser and the performance by the Cerdd NPT Music Service Choir was conducted by Kirstie Roberts

The soloists were Tom Meo Ford, Moli Edwards, Emily Rees, Sophie Kneath, Holly Oakwell Jenkins, Alex Stockton and Bethan Nicholas-Thomas. Strings – Sharon Williams, Caroline Nicholas Thomas, Imogen Kent, Amy Marston, Laura Cotrell and Mia Verallo. The band was made up of Luke Evans, Andrew Coughlan, Ray Dizon and Luke Lockyer. String arrangement was by Luke Lockyer.

Soloist Bethan Nicholas-Thomas is this year’s Neath Port Talbot Youth Mayor. Bethan is a member of the British Youth Council and the Youth Climate Ambassadors Group which campaigns to make changes for a healthier planet.

The song was recorded and produced by Luke Evans with filming and editing by Christian Reason. Sunflowers for the recording were donated by Neath florist Stella Blooms. Many thanks go to Cerdd NPT Music Service staff and the pupils and staff from Cwmtawe Community School, Llangatwg School, Dwr-Y- Felin School, Cwm Brombil School, St Joseph’s Comprehensive School, Ysgol Gymraeg Ystalyfera Bro Dur and Neath College.

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(Lead image & Video: Neath Port Talbot Council)

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