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Sunday, 25 August, 2002, 10:17 GMT 11:17 UK
Soap stars line up for festival finale
Bryn Terfel and Renée Fleming
Renée Fleming starred at Bryn Terfel's festival
Singing star Martine McCutcheon is set to top the billing for the final night of Faenol Festival in north Wales on Sunday night.

The former EastEnders actress who was acclaimed for her performance in My Fair Lady in London's West End will join host Bryn Terfel for the event's closing concert.

Martine McCutcheon
McCutcheon was a coup for the event

Around 20,000 people are expected to have visited the three-day extravaganza which features a mix of opera, rock, pop and songs from hits musicals.

Brookside favorite Claire Sweeney will also be in the line-up for an evening from the musicals including My Fair Lady, Les Miserables, Chicago and Miss Saigon.

The festival, in the grounds of the Faenol estate in Caernarfon, was Terfel's brainchild and has included performers like Grammy award-winning American soprano Renee Fleming.

Welsh National Opera cast members have taken part, along with a number of Welsh bands and solo artists.

Claire Sweeney
Claire Sweeney : medley from the musicals

The festival's impact won it the title of the Greatest Show in Wales title at the 2002 Wales Tourism Awards ceremony.

The festival began as a charity fundraiser for the Ty Gobaith Hospice Appeal.

Terfel, from nearby Pantglas, Gwynedd, decided he wanted to give something back to his community.

He said he was "deeply honoured" to receive the award after only two years of the festival's existence.

"Heart-warming"

"I have long waited to bring top-class entertainers to perform near my home in Gwynedd," he said.

"It has been very heart-warming to see how well it has been received," he added.

"We have some fantastic names here - I've had to pinch myself.

"Just to have Claire Sweeney and Martine McCutcheon is something very special.

Ticket sales have gone well and organisers expect to have received more than 20,000 visitors by the end of Sunday.

See also:

22 Jun 02 | Wales
26 Apr 02 | Wales
25 Aug 00 | Wales
23 Jan 02 | Wales
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