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Fron Choir's rise to stardom - 50 years in the making
Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir
Fron Choir - the world's oldest boy band with a combined age of 4,000


Charting the history of Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir as they're nominated for a third Classical Brits award

Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir's rise to fame as Brit nominated artists has been 50 years in the making.

The choir originally started when plans were announced to hold the first Llangollen International Music Eisteddfod in 1947 and locals wanted to take part.

The village of Froncysyllte decided that such a world music festival - designed to reunite nations after WWII - was a "good idea" and local man Gomer Powell called a public meeting with the formation of a choir as its goal.

The Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir was formed at that meeting with JR Jones (Joe Jordan) as the first chairman.

ARCHIVE: Fron Choir busk in Chester

A prominent county councillor, Joe was the driving force behind the choir in its early years although he was never a member, maintaining his voice was "awful".

Lloyd Edwards, a well known local piano teacher was appointed conductor and a chorister's daughter, Menna Hughes - who was one of Lloyd's pupils - was appointed as the accompanist.

To compete in the male voice competition at the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod the choir needed 60 voices so Wilfred Jones, the leader of the Froncysyllte Youth Club, persuaded the village's young men to join.

This idea was so popular that the 1947 Fron Choir had the youngest membership of any Welsh male voice choir.

Among the first to join back then was a 16-year-old Dennis Williams who was among the choristers to sign the record deal with Universal in 2006, making the group the UK's oldest boy band with a with a combined age of 4,000.

"When we were first approached by Universal I never thought it would be this big, " recalled Dennis.

It took a chance meeting with Daniel Glatman, manager of boy band Blue, before fame finally came to call.

Rolf Harris and the Fron choir
Rolf Harris and Fron Choir performed together in Llangollen

Daniel heard them play at a wedding and was bowled over by their sound.

Their first commercial recording, Voices of the Valley, made it to in the album charts in its first week of release in mid-November 2006.

Their follow-up album did the same thing with pre-orders before going platinum - selling 300,000 - and earning them their first Classical Brits nomination in early 2008 - something they repeated in 2009 and 2010.

The publicity launches around their albums shows the boys remain loyal to their roots.

Despite performing around the world, on TV and with celebrity performers, the venues they chose were on the doorstep - Air Products Sports and Social Club, Cefn Mawr, and the Bryn Howell hotel, Llangollen.




SEE ALSO
Fron choir busks its way to glory
24 Jul 08 |  Wales
Fron choir beaten to Brit award
03 May 07 |  Wales
Rolf remakes Two Little Boys hit
15 Oct 08 |  Wales
Welsh acts take on Pope for award
15 Feb 10 |  Wales
Choirs
19 Jun 09 |  Music

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