Welsh personality, Shân Cothi is a versatile classical and music theatre soloist and an experienced actress and television and radio presenter.
She began her career as a music teacher but winning the Blue Riband for the best classical soloist at the National Eisteddfod of Wales in 1995 prompted her to become a professional singer.
In 2000, Shân was cast as Carlotta in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s production of The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London’s West End and performed the role for fifteen months. In 2014 she made her début in the role of Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd, with Sir Bryn Terfel in the title role, at the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod and in 2015 understudied Emma Thompson in the role for English National Opera. To celebrate the Wales Millennium Centre’s 10th Anniversary in September 2015, Shân performed the role of the mythical mistress of magic Ceridwen in the Ar Waith Ar Daith finale – a grand-scale open-air spectacular of myth and magic involving over 700 performers – in the Roald Dahl Plass, Cardiff Bay.
Following the release of her début album, Passione with the Welsh National Chamber Orchestra on the Sain Label in 2005, a promotional video of Caro Mio Ben, recorded at the National Botanic Garden of Wales, was voted ‘The Most Watched Video’ on Classic FM television. Her long awaited second album, Paradwys was released in September 2015 on the Acapela Label and reached number 26 on the Classic FM chart and number 18 in the classical charts. Following the release of the album, Shân embarked on a promotional concert tour of Wales.
Shân is a well-known face on Welsh television. She made her TV acting début playing the role of Davina Roberts in the highly successful drama series Con Passionate for S4C and was nominated in the ‘Best Newcomer’ category at the 2006 BAFTA Cymru awards. Her self-titled music TV series for S4C won a BAFTA award and was nominated for the Best Music Programme award in the Montreux Festival. Shân has presented a number of television series for S4C, including Bro in which she and her co–presenter Iolo Williams travelled around Wales, getting to know its people and landscapes and Y Sipsiwn in which Shân followed the old Welsh Romany gipsy route in a gipsy caravan.
Shân is a keen horsewoman. In 2012 she filmed the television programme Cheltenham Cothi, which documented her progress to be a competitive jockey at the St Patrick’s Day Charity Derby in Cheltenham. In 2013 she successfully climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in support of Velindre Cancer Centre and Amser Justin Time, a charity Shân founded in 2008 to raise awareness of Pancreatic Cancer.
In June 2015, to mark BBC Music Day, Shân set a new world record as one half of the longest-distance duet ever. Shân in Cardiff and Andres Evans in Patagonia sang ‘Calon Lân’, 7,000 miles apart in a link-up between Wales and Argentina which was broadcast live on BBC Radio Cymru, BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio 3 and has been officially certified by Guinness World Records.
Concert highlights include ‘Broadway to the Bay’ at the Wales Millennium Centre, ‘10 Difa’ concert & S4C broadcast from Llandudno’s Venue Cymru, a Big Band extravaganza at the National Eisteddfod of Wales in Abergavenny and the Amser Justin Time 10th Anniversary concert in Pontrhydfendigaid.
Shân presents a daily weekday morning programme on BBC Radio Cymru entitled ‘Bore Cothi’.