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Helston Town Band and tenor John Treleaven launch charity Flora Dance CD for RNLI

By West Briton  |  Posted: December 08, 2013

Tenor John Treleaven performing with Helston Town Band at the Lismore Proms earlier this year.

Tenor John Treleaven performing with Helston Town Band at the Lismore Proms earlier this year.

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HELSTON Town Band has joined forces with renowned tenor John Treleaven to make what is believed to be the first all-Cornish vocal recording of the Floral Dance.

A CD, which also features the Cornish anthem Trelawny, is now available, with all profits donated to the RNLI.

Launched at Friday's Christmas lights switch-on, it is now on sale in shops around town.

Lyrics for the ancient Floral Dance were written by Katie Moss in 1911 after she heard it played by the town band during Helston's Furry Dance celebrations. It was first recorded in 1912, by Australian baritone Peter Dawson and many other recordings have been made since, but this is thought to be the first entirely Cornish one.

Mr Treleaven, from Porthleven, was discovered when he was heard singing after one of his daily sea swims by a friend of William Lloyd Webber, principal of the London College of Music, who offered him a scholarship. After four years of study Mr Treleaven took the lead tenor role in Carmen with the English National Opera and has since sung in major opera houses all over the world. He and his wife Roxane now live in Germany.

Peter Penberthy, the volunteer co-ordinator of the Floral Dance project, said: "It's a lovely commemorative CD, with a full- colour eight-page souvenir booklet, which will stir the pride of every Cornish person, making it the ideal Christmas present for friends, family and Cornish exiles.

"The band was delighted to have the opportunity to perform with John Treleaven, and honoured that he returned home to take part in the performance.

"The RNLI is close to the hearts of both the band and John whose father, grandfather and great-grandfather were all fishermen from Porthleven."

Shops selling the CD include Heathercraft at 12 Coinagehall Street, Helston, and it can also be obtained via the website www.floraldanceproject.com at a cost of £3.50 plus £1.50 for postage and packaging.

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