Watch: Singer performs stunning version of Hei Mistar Urdd
Social media was awash today with videos of individuals and groups belting out a version of the iconic song Hei Mistar Urdd in an attempt to break a world record.
It’s all part of Urdd Gobaith Cymru 100th birthday celebrations.
One of those taking part was Mared Jôns whose stunning take on the song was most definitely the most beautiful version we have heard today.
Her gorgeous a cappella vocals, sat on a stairwell with echoing acoustics, stopped us in our tracks – and underlined perfectly why Wales is the Land of Song.
Me? Singing Hei Mistar Urdd a cappella? You have the wrong Cardiff University A Cappella Society alumnus. pic.twitter.com/cpybiVxtMe
— Mared Jôns (@ffrinj) January 25, 2022
“I filmed it in the office stairwell because the acoustics are lovely in there, and just fancied singing a cappella – mostly because the original key is too high for me to sing comfortably,” laughs Mared, who works as the social media manager for the Urdd.
The 27 year old from Denbigh, who now lives and works in Cardiff added: “I posted the video so I could show it as an example to my colleagues, and other people taking part, of how to post a video. I didn’t expect it to catch anyone’s eye!”
As for her a cappella performance, she said: “I’m an ex group manager and beatboxer for the Cardiff University Decibelles (a female-identifying a cappella group), hence why I prefer to sing without backing.”
The centenary celebrations for Wales’ largest youth organisation began this morning with the biggest birthday party in its history and an official Guinness World Records™ title attempt.
At 10:30, a virtual Zoom party was held in the company of Stwnsh Sadwrn TV presenters, mascot Mistar Urdd, musician Mei Gwynedd, which wasalso be broadcast live on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio Cymru.
The Urdd and people from across the nation then attempted an official Guinness World Records™ title by uploading as many videos as possible of individuals, groups and families singing a shortened version of Hei Mistar Urdd, on Twitter and Facebook between 10:45 and 11:45.
Over 80,000 have registered to take part in the celebrations on the day, from schools to charities and community groups.
Exactly 100 years ago, in an article in Cymru’r Plant magazine, Syr Ifan ab Owen Edwards (the Urdd’s founder) asked the children of Wales to join a new movement called ‘Urdd Gobaith Cymru Fach’, as he did not feel there were enough opportunities for them to use the Welsh language.
2022 yw ein blwyddyn ni. 2022 is our year.
A century of making memories – dewch i ddathlu gyda ni!
⏰ 10.30: Parti
⏰ 10.45: #YmgaisRecordBydyrUrdd
— Urdd Gobaith Cymru (@Urdd) January 25, 2022
Siân Lewis, Chief Executive of the Urdd said: “As a nation, our debt to Syr Ifan’s vision is enormous. The Urdd has been a truly unique and innovative movement since the very beginning, and as relevant to young people today as it was a century ago. Reaching this special milestone is an opportunity for us to celebrate the Urdd’s story and look to the future.
“The Urdd has provided unique opportunities for more than 4 million children and young people in Wales to enjoy experiences through the medium of Welsh – from sport to the arts, residential, humanitarian, outdoor activities, voluntary, training, and international projects.
“It is the only organisation that offers such a wide variety to our young people and therefore deserves its place as Wales’ main youth organisation. On St Dwynwen’s Day, I call on everyone in Wales (and beyond!) to show their love towards the Urdd by joining the centenary celebrations and help us attempt an official Guinness World Records™ title.”
Alan Pixsley – Head of Global Event Production, Guinness World Records™ said: “We’re very excited to be working with Urdd Gobaith Cymru on what promises to be a very exciting centenary anniversary celebration.
“Securing Guinness World Records™ titles is no easy feat and we wish all the participants and Urdd Gobaith Cymru the best of luck with their attempts.
“Our adjudicators look forward to seeing the singing videos and hope that they will be crowning Urdd Gobaith Cymru as record-holders of Most videos of people singing the same song uploaded to Facebook in one hour and Most videos of people singing the same song uploaded to Twitter in one hour.”
With BBC Radio Cymru and BBC Radio Wales broadcasting the celebrations on 25 January, Rhuanedd Richards, Director of Content and Services, BBC Wales said: “BBC Wales is delighted to be part of Urdd Gobaith Cymru’s 100th anniversary celebrations. The Urdd and BBC Wales have a special partnership spanning decades, with the BBC broadcasting from the Urdd Eisteddfod since the seventies.
“The organisation has played such an important role in providing opportunities for Welsh children, all through the medium of Welsh, and I have fond memories of competing on the stage at the Urdd Eisteddfod and of fun weekends visiting Llangrannog and Glan-llyn. I’m really looking forward to listening to the celebrations on Radio Cymru and Radio Wales on 25 January.”
Shadow Secretary of State for Wales Jo Stevens said: “The Urdd has made an enormous contribution to Welsh life over the last century, giving more than 4 million children and young people the chance to learn, socialise and play in the Welsh language.
“As a 1970’s child, I still remember the arrival of Mr Urdd and have very happy memories both of competing in Eisteddfods and a great time at Glan-llyn with primary school friends. For so many families across Wales, the trips to Glan Llyn and Llangranog are a rite of passage.
“A hundred years on, the Urdd continues to go from strength to strength through their Eisteddfod, sports, residential centres and charity work across Wales, more recently welcoming families of Afghan refugees to Wales.
“Thank you and happy 100th birthday Urdd Gobaith Cymru. Enjoy the party and here’s to the next 100 years.”
Also on 25th January, St Fagans National Museum of History will open a new exhibition to mark the Urdd’s centenary, and iconic buildings such as the Senedd and the National Library of Wales have committed to flying the Urdd’s flag or to light-up in red, white and green especially for the occasion.
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.