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Friday, 14 June, 2002, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
Royal harpist stars in music festival
Llangollen International Eisteddfod Pavillion
There will be more than 6,000 competitors
One of the stars of the 2002 Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod has been given the royal seal of approval.

Catrin Finch, who will perform at the festival in July, is the official harpist to the Prince of Wales.

Catrin Finch
Catrin Finch is an official Royal harpist

The post goes back hundreds of years however, no one has filled the position since 1872 during the reign of Queen Victoria.

You have to go back even further to find the last official harpist to the Prince of Wales - George IV appointed Edward Jones of Llandderfel in 1796.

Prince Charles decided upon Catrin after hearing her play for him at his 52nd birthday celebration.

Miss Finch appeared at the Llangollen Eisteddfod last year and will make a triumphant return as part of the Worldwide Celebration of Music and Dance on the 11 July.


She is a credit to Wales, and I could not be more proud of her

HRH The Prince of Wales

The performer has had an extremely busy year since coming second in the 2001 International Instrumentalist competition and has recently returned from an arduous tour of America.

She says she will have an even greater schedule now her royal work has been extended.

"I have been the official harpist to HRH The Prince of Wales since 2000, which was intended to be only a two year appointment so you can understand both my surprise and delight at being appointed for a further two," she said.

Prince Charles is the Patron of the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod which has been established since 1947.

Other stars

He said: "When I re-established the ancient tradition of appointing a harpist to The Prince of Wales two years ago little did I imagine that I would find someone with such a rare talent and special talent as Catrin.

"She is a credit to Wales, and I could not be more proud of her."

The harpist is one of the main attractions of this years International Eisteddfod with ticket sales already exceeding those of recent years.

Lesley Garrett and Ladysmith Black Mambazo are amongst the other stars on show.

The festival runs from the 9 to the 14 July.


More news from north east Wales
See also:

12 Jun 02 | Wales
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13 Jun 01 | Wales
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