Production Team

Current Team

Director – Daniel Rhys Williams

Daniel has been a Carmarthen Youth Opera stalwart since 1999, joining the group for Guys and Dolls. His love for the theatre had begun and he went on to win the president’s shield seven years later for his part as Fagin in Oliver! Becoming a theatre regular with groups in Carmarthen from CAOS to Just Good Friends to Merlin, Daniel then went into the field of education and made Performing Arts his focus. He inspired many young people who would go on to pursue their own ambitions in the theatre and Performing Arts.

He continues to work in schools producing and writing educational shows and has been directing young people in musicals for the last ten years. Daniel made his Lyric Theatre directorial debut with CAOS in 2015 directing The Wizard of Oz and, in the same year, won the President’s Shield for the second time with the Youth Opera for his portrayal of Gomez in The Addams Family. During this time Daniel was the co-founder and director of the Mini Players Theatre School, which proved highly successful for a number of years giving hundreds of children and young people the opportunity to perform in big productions.

Daniel is also a keen writer and has staged many farcical plays of his own with his group the Principal Players. In 2017 Daniel received his biggest honour which was becoming the artistic director for the very company that started his creative ambition. Daniel directed Carmarthen Youth Opera’s Guys and Dolls (2018), their 40th anniversary spectacular Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (2019), My Fair Lady (2020) and Grease (2022).

Daniel has worked with many professionals over the years but couldn’t be more privileged to be working alongside the committed and talented individuals that make up the Carmarthen Youth Opera. He looks forward to the future with the company and hopes to see everyone return to the auditorium very soon.

Musical Director – Bridget Radford

Bridget trained at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Classical singing with Beatrix Unsworth and also received coaching sessions in Musical Theatre with Mary Hammond. She has been a singing teacher and vocal coach for over twenty years and is also the Musical Director of Cor Lleisiau Hardd a mixed choir based in Llanelli. Bridget   runs Seren Performing Arts which is a performing arts school based at Theatr Y Ffwrnes.
Her involvement with Carmarthen Youth Opera started in 1985 as a performer and then in more recent years as part of the production team . In 2016 Bridget was Musical Director   for ‘Whistle Down the Wind’ and then returned in 2020 for ‘My Fair Lady’ and in 2022 was Musical Director for ‘Grease’.  Bridget feels very privileged to MD such a prestigious Youth Company.

Choreographer – Rachel Saddler

Rachel began dancing at the Gwen Wilkin School for premiere Danseurs. At the age of 17 she moved to Wales to train and after graduating taught at Cardigan School of Dancing. She now runs her own school, Steps Starlets, where she teaches Cheerleading, Pom Dance, Hip Hop Jazz and Tumble, and competes both Nationally and Internationally. She also choreographs and is wardrobe mistress for Forge Drama. 

Rachel joined the Youth Opera in 2007 with her children Millie and Henry and has never looked back, either choreographing or in wardrobe and enjoying being part of the Youth Opera family.

After working in QE High for 16 years she is this year returning to university to fulfil her ambition to become a social worker.

Rachel enjoys nothing better than building children’s confidence, seeing them blossom whether it is for a performance or life.

Accompanist – Zara Preece

Previous Directors

Steve Elias – 2014 -2017

Adrian Rowlands – 2005 – 2013

Elizabeth Evans MBE – 1979 – 2004

Previous Musical Directors

Gareth Kirby – 2009 – 2015, 2017-2019

Bridget Radford – 2016

Hywel Benjamin – 2001 – 2008

Edward John – 1998 – 2000

Christopher Broome – 1997

John Morgan – 1988 – 1996

Enfys David-Jones/Williams – 1984 – 1987

David Lloyd Davies – 1982 – 1983

Ian Thomas – 1981

Paul Thomas – 1979 – 1980

Previous Choreographers/Dance Repetiteurs

Hannah La Trobe 2018

Rachel Saddler 2009-2014

Llinos McCarthy – 2005

Joanne Morris – 2005-2014

Jayne Randall – 1997

Michael Wray – 1990, 1992-1993

Helen Croker/Hughes – 1982-1991, 1998-2008

Elizabeth Evans – 1979-1981

Previous Repetiteurs/Accompanists

Hazel Thorogood – 1988-1996, 2004-2014, 2019-2021

Jessica Bowen – 2013-2016

Sarah Thomas/Kirby – 2013-2018

Roger Hart – 2000-2005

Calvin Price – 1986

David Poulter – 1984-1985, 1987, 1990, 1994-1995,1997-1999

Stephen P Rees – 1982

Ian Jones – 1981

Ian Thomas – 1980

Mair Cooper – 1980