18 December 2014
Only Boys Aloud head north
Ground-breaking male youth choir Only Boys Aloud moves beyond the Valleys and hits the high road, with a new initiative reaching from Holyhead to Wrexham.
Since its formation 5 years ago Only Boys Aloud has offered once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to hundreds of boys across South Wales to perform of platforms large and small across the UK, as well as numerous TV appearances and recordings. In the New Year, OBA heads north for a new pilot project, extending those opportunities to boys aged 14-19 from one end of the A55 to the other… Rehearsals for new choirs in Holyhead, Caernarfon, Rhyl and Wrexham will start in April and culminate with performances at key events in the area in September and October 2015.
Created for a one-off concert in 2010, OBA has gone from strength to strength, gaining a momentous 3rd place in Britain’s Got Talent in 2012, performing at Buckingham Palace in 2013 to celebrate the anniversary of the coronation, singing in the X Factor final and much, much more. Now The ALOUD Charity is able to announce plans to bring this exciting new take on the traditional Welsh male choir to North Wales. Inclusivity is central to the scheme. There are no fees to take part. No auditions. Any boy aged 14-19 who commits to attending regularly at their local rehearsal is welcomed whatever their background or ability. At its heart the scheme aims to make a difference to the young men of Wales and help raise aspiration levels, self-esteem and confidence.
A North Wales-based project manager will be recruited to run the pilot: we’ll also be looking for 4 Music Leaders (or Team Captains as we call them) and at least 4 volunteer Community Leaders to help run the local rehearsals. We aim to recruit a minimum of 25 young men in each area (though we hope many more will join) from all backgrounds, always actively seeking those who can often be marginalised. These boys will take part in a programme of rehearsals - including massed rehearsals with the full group - culminating in an exciting public performance in September 2015.
Tim Rhys-Evans, Artistic Director of The ALOUD Charity said:
“We’re enormously proud of OBA and at a time when increasingly stretched resources mean our music services are facing devastating cuts, the work of The ALOUD Charity is now needed more than ever. Key to our success has always been working with people who have shared our vision and we are therefore so grateful to our funders for enabling us to not only continue our work in South Wales but to grow the OBA family to include North Wales. Teenage lads sometimes have a hard time finding their place in the world and often face opposition from their peers when they want to engage with singing and the arts in general. OBA provides a safe, fun environment for boys to experience the highs, joy and banter that being part of a choir can bring”