Born 12 February 1879 at Weston Rhyn, near Oswestry, Salop, son of Evan Thomas Roberts and his wife Hephsibah Roberts; the family moved in 1890 to Ysbyty Ifan, Denbighshire, to keep a shop. He was educated at the county school, Llanrwst, Salop School, Oswestry, the county school, Porthmadog, and the University College of North Wales, Bangor. He was articled to Major Barnes, agent of the Chirk Castle estate, and it was at Chirk that he began to study music and to learn to play the piano. He had begun to be in demand as an accompanist before he moved, in 1902, to Llandudno where he became organist of the English (B) chapel. He had by now decided to devote himself entirely to music. He wrote songs ('Y Mab Afradlon ' and ' Good Shepherd') and a piece for male voice choirs ('Brwydr y Baltic') which was chosen as a test-piece at the Colwyn Bay national eisteddfod of 1910. Appointed organist of Castle Square English chapel, Caernarfon, he moved to that town; later he became organist and choirmaster at Moreia (CM) chapel in the same town. About this time he composed the songs ' Y Nefoedd ', ' Pistyll y Llan ', and ' Cymru Lân '. He wrote several hymn-tunes, among them ' Pennant '. His services were much in demand as accompanist and adjudicator. He died at Wrexham Hospital, 21 June 1948, and was buried in Ysbyty Ifan churchyard four days later.
He had been married twice, his second wife being Leila Megáne (Margaret Hughes).
Published date: 2001
Article Copyright: http://rightsstatements.org/page/InC-RUU/1.0/
The Dictionary of Welsh Biography is provided by The National Library of Wales and the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies. It is free to use and does not receive grant support. A donation would help us maintain and improve the site so that we can continue to acknowledge Welsh men and women who have made notable contributions to life in Wales and beyond.
Find out more on our sponsorship page.