Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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REES-DAVIES , IEUAN ( 1894 - 1967 ), musician and author ;

b. 15 July 1894 in Treorchy , Rhondda, Glam. , and educated at Pentre school . He moved to London c. 1914 and attended Goldsmith College and the Royal Academy of Music . He became particularly interested in the status of music in schools , and gained a teacher's diploma, L.T.S.C. He also had certificates of L.R.A.M. and A.R.C.M. and was an honorary F.T.S.C. and F.T.C.L. He became a schoolteacher and headmaster in London , and organised classes for music teachers in the Literary Institutes . He was appointed a lecturer at the college which was established in Marylebone to instruct music teachers . He advised the educational authorities of London , Kent , Essex , and Surrey on music in schools. He became a teacher and examiner of the Trinity College of Music in London and a member of the council of the College of Tonic Sol-fa . He published many books and articles on musical education , specializing in aural tests and classroom singing. His works include Transposition at the keyboard ( 1933 ), A sight-singing course for the non-specialist teacher ( 1955 ), Aural tests for schools ( 1960 ), Graded music reading ( 1961 ) and Music for C.S.E. ( 1966 ). He composed tunes and part-songs ; the best known of his works is his setting for male choir of a nursery song which is attributed to Charles I , ‘ Close thine eyes ’, and which was rendered into Welsh (‘ Cyn cau llygaid ’) by William Evans (‘ Wil Ifan ’, see above ) and published by Curwen Press in 1938 . He published also a bilingual anthology of poetry from his native district, Caniadau Cwm Rhondda ( 1928 ) which includes two of his own compositions, ‘ Y garreg fawr ’ and ‘ A nocturne on Tylacoch ’. That same year, with the bardic name ‘ Ieuan ’, he became a member of the Gorsedd of bards during the national eisteddfod at Treorchy . He m. (1) Jean Macdonald Fitchet (d. 1938 ); (2) Barbara Lacey . Towards the end of his life he lived at Kingston-upon-Thames . He d. 28 Nov. 1967 .


  • Who's who in Wales (1937) ;
  • Who's who in Music (London, 1935) (1935;1962) ;
  • Y Cerddor , Apr. 1934 .


Dr Rhidian Griffiths, Aberystwyth

Published date: 2001