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SimonCritchlow.jpgSimon Critchlow

I am a Fibre Network Project Manager who joined the Fron in January 2018. I bought all the CDs as they were released and when I met my wife I moved to north Wales which enabled me to come to the annual concert at the William Aston Hall. One year we got talking to the wives running the raffle and they suggested I come to a rehearsal – the rest, they say, is history.
My first performance was at a wedding engagement in Nottingham.
My favourite venue and performance has to be winning the Male Voice competition at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod – at the time of writing, it’s the only non-wedding venue I have performed in.
Don’t feel intimidated about coming along, just because you may not have sung before.  The whole organisation is extremely supportive, and the social side of the choir is an amazing thing to be a part of.
My other main hobby is racing motorcycles at venues such as: Brands Hatch, Donnington Park, Oulton Park and Silverstone.  During the past 12 years, I have been RAF and Combined Services Champion and have stood on various podiums ahead of the then future British Championship contenders.
 

1st Tenor Voice Rep Geoff Davies

I joined the choir initially in 1970 but left in 1990, returning in 2007. Singing has been a part of my life - it started from singing in chapel, then Eisteddfodau, as a soloist and in a choir, it was a natural progression.
I cannot recall my first performance with the Fron – it is too far back. My favourite venue is probably the Royal Albert Hall in London where we’ve song quite a few times. My favourite performance was our recent win at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod (my third time with the Fron), that and the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto.
Joining the choir is one of the best things I’ve ever done. You are surrounded by lads who become mates, you have a chance to travel, and you are always learning new music, and it also improves your self-confidence.
I have been retired for 16 years from my job as an Electrical Inspector at a local Chemical Factory, now closed.
An interesting fact . . . I was one in the first hundred babies born in Wales at the start of the National Health Service in 1948.
 

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Malcolm Davies

I was initially a member of the choir from February 1962 – December 1966, and re-joined in October 1983 and have been a member ever since. 
I love music and singing, also the choir has a vast and varies repertoire. 
My very first performance was at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod in 1962 
My favourite venue is the New Vic Theatre in Stoke but my favourite performance has to be winning at the Llangollen international Eisteddfod three times with the Fron.
I was a painter and decorator before I retired and would say to anyone thinking of joining that, like me, you will love the music, singing and camaraderie.
An interesting fact . . . In 1958 my pal and myself rode a 150cc NSU scooter to Barcelona! It took 5½ days to get there at 30mph and 6 days back because we were very tired, having spent 3½ days there.


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Rob Edwards

I am a retired Electrical Engineer with MANWEB / Scottish Power.
I joined the Fron in November 1995. I had been a long-time admirer of the choir and had previously sung in Llangollen Operatic Society and Llangollen Male Voice Choir but a change of circumstances meant that I finally had the time and opportunity to make the commitment to join the Fron.
My first performance was a joint concert for S4C with the Rhos Orpheus and Caernarfon at Birmingham Symphony Hall with Bryn Terfel and Rebecca Evans.
I think my favourite venue we have sung in is the Bridgwater Hall in Manchester but my favourite performance was our winning performance at the Cornwall International Male Choral Festival 2017.
I would say to anyone thinking of joining: If you enjoy singing in any style, come and give us a try – you’ll find yourself surrounded by 50-60 men from all sorts of backgrounds with a shared common love of singing and, before you know it, you’ll have 60 new great mates having a great laugh. And if you enjoy a beer or two, even better!
I don’t have any interesting facts, I’m a boring b*****d!
 

Assistant TreasurerTudor Evans
 
I am a farmer who has always enjoyed singing and I joined the Fron in 1980/81 to sing under the baton of John Daniel. My first performance was in Ellesmere in 1981.
I always enjoy the annual Christmas concert we give at the New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme but my favourite performance was in the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto, Ontario, during the Choir’s tour of Canada in 2000.
If you enjoy singing, join a male voice choir – you will never regret it!
 

StephenHollowayT1.jpgStephen Holloway

I am a retired Primary School Head Teacher of a school in Birmingham who can still sit crossed-legged on the floor! When we lived in Birmingham I sang with Canoldir choir. When I retired we moved back to Oswestry and, after constant nagging from Graham Burgess I came along to the Fron and joined in September 2016. My first performance was at the Rhyl Pavilion.
My favourite venue was the impromptu concerts we gave in the Mondsee Church and Melk Monastery during our recent tour of Austria but my favourite performance is winning the Male Voice choir competition at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod!
You can’t beat that feeling of a male voice choir in full voice – just try it!
 

BerwynJones.jpgBerwyn Jones

I was an Industrial Security Manager and I have always loved singing. The Fron Choir sang at my daughter’s wedding, so I  joined in April 2003. My first performance was at the Male Voice Choir competition at The Llangollen International Eisteddfod.
The Symphony Hall, Birmingham is my favourite performance, but my favourite venue is the Sage Theatre, Gateshead.
Being in the Fron is a big commitment but it is wonderful to sing in so many different venues in the U.K. and abroad. The social side is also wonderful and besides, singing is proven to be good for your health!
 

Concert SecerataryCyril Jones

I joined the choir in 1987 as I had always wanted to be a member of a big male voice choir  
My first performance was at the New Vic Theatre, Stoke but my favourite venue has to be The Albert Hall.
I am a retired Police Officer and being a choir member is a wonderful pastime.
It is a great brotherhood and you get to sing in some wonderful venues and go on some great trips.
My favourite performance was at The Tower of London with Leslie Garrett 
I was able to meet Bryn Terfel and be involved with the choir on his TV programme.
 

CompereDavid Jones

I joined the choir in the Spring of 1996. Male voice singing is in my bones. My father was a member of this choir and his father was a deputy conductor of Cefn choir and an adjudicator at Eisteddfodau. 
My first performance was at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod, but my favourite venue is the New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme. 
If I was asked to name my favourite performance it would have to be Milwaukee Cathedral. U.S.A  
I was a Senior Officer in the Prison Service for nearly forty years, and at the height of our recording success I was dubbed “The Celebrity Screw” 
I would tell any prospective member of the choir to come along and give it a go. Singing lifts your soul and you become part of a brotherhood in song .
I have sung most forms of music from being in a Rock Band, a Barbershop Octet and this wonderful choir.
 

RollyJones.jpgRoly Jones

I am a recently retired painter and decorator and joined the Fron in 1981 and since then I have been a committee member some five times and have also been Stage Manager and Deputy Stage manager.
One of the best things I did in my life was joining The Fron Choir. Going to places that you could only dream about: Canada, America, Malta, Athens, Holland, Germany; going down to South Wales and competing against world-famous choirs and winning!
But for me, the biggest thrill was being on stage at the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto - absolute MAGIC!
 

JohnKelsall.jpgJohn Kelsall

I have been involved in music since I joined the church choir at the age of 6. I left at 18 when I started work on the railways.
My father was a 1st Tenor in a Male Voice Choir (MVC) and in 1975 I joined Flint MVC and I was with them for several years until work dictated I move away.
I then joined Chester MVC. The then conductor, Grenville Lund, was also conductor of Highfield MVC and asked me to join them as well because they were short of tenors. At the same time, I was also a member of Mold Choral Society which I enjoyed for many years.
When work took me away once more I joined Trelawnyd MVC and also went ‘on loan’, as it were, with Trieth MVC and Balderstone MVC in Yorkshire until my retirement.
It was then I moved home to be closer to my grandchildren and joined the Fron! That was ten years ago and that will be my last move.
The boys in the Fron have a nickname for me: ‘Johnny Five Choirs’ but, as you can see, I’ve been in many more than that.
 

ColinKinmondT1.jpgColin Kinmond

I am a retired Master Butcher and abattoir owner and initially became a member of the Fron in 1995 after a call from the then Musical Director, Val Jones, asking me to join. I left for a few years when we moved to the South of England and returned in 2017.
My favourite venue is the New Vic Theatre in Newcastle-under-Lyme, but my favourite performance is winning the Male Voice competition at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod with a full choir in 2018.
It's a privilege to be a member of a choir with such history, come and give it a go!
The choir has the Pont aqueduct on the badge - and my mother was born on a working canal barge in the West Midlands.
 

DylanMoss.jpgDulyn Moss

I am a retired Police Sergeant and joined the Fron in 1988 when the Wrexham Police Choir disbanded and out of respect for John Daniel who was the Fron M.D. at the time.
My first concert was in December 1988 at the New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme, which to this day remains my favourite venue. The annual Christmas concert we have there is my favourite performance of the year.
There is no better hobby than singing in the Fron. It brings companionship and relaxation.

 

Rogers-Hughes.jpgDavid Rogers-Hughes

The Fron is the fourth male voice choir I have been a member of. I joined my first male voice choir when I was 16 years of age and progressed to the Fron when I retired from dairy farming in September 2007.

My first performance with the Fron was at St Francis’ Church, Bourneville in October 2007.

My favourite venue is the New Vic Theatre, Newcastle-under-Lyme and my favourite performance was singing at

Prince Charles’  60th birthday in November 2008

If you enjoy singing – give the Fron a try!

 

TreasurerAllan Smith

I joined the Fron in September 1986. One of my neighbours was a member and he pestered me until I went to listen to a concert.  I was bowled over, so I went to a rehearsal and had a chat with John Daniel and a voice test and ended up a first tenor.

My first performance was at a theatre in Lampeter – it was miles from anywhere.

My favourite performance was at Milwaukee Cathedral when we watched the audience faces and, when we started to sing, they suddenly sat up and were spellbound. We walked down the aisle to a standing ovation.

Another favourite was when we went to Holland where we invited to sing at a concert with a large choir called The Maastricht Star with about 120 singers or more. They opened the concert and we were on in the second half. Val Jones gathered us together in the interval and said – they might have over 120 on stage but you’re better than them. By the end of the first song the other choir and the whole audience were on the edge of their seats and at the end of the performance their conductor stood up and pointed out to his choir that we had a marvellous sound, performed without music and sang from the heart!

I was an accountant before I retired and carry on that role as Treasurer of the Fron.

I believe that you could not find a better hobby anywhere! When I moved to Wales I never thought I could be part of the culture but joining the Fron gave me another family. Singing also keeps you fit and active.

Even though I may have a Merseyside accent, I was actually born in Yorkshire and my ashes are going to be scattered in my spiritual home - a place called Lumb Falls near Hebden Bridge where I can look over where I used to go swimming with my mates when, as a family, we would escape back to Yorkshire from the bombing of the docks at Birkenhead in WWII.

DarylStephensonT1.jpgDaryl Stephenson

I am a Development Baker who creates new recipes for bakeries to use for products that you would find in the big supermarkets.

I joined the choir in 2016 after coming to listen to a friend who was a member at the time and getting hooked.

My first performance was a concert at Tern Hill, Market Drayton.

My favourite venue so far is the New Vic Theatre in Newcastle under Lyme.  My favourite performance has to be winning the Male Voice Choir category at Llangollen International Eisteddfod in 2018

Joining the choir has given me a whole range of new experiences.  I am quite a shy person, but that all goes away during a performance and a whole new side of me appears. Singing has always been part of my life but most of my finest performances only ever took place in the shower until I joined the Fron.

Interesting fact – When I was younger I was offered the chance to have my voice trained by a very prestigious vocal coach but I said no as I didn't want to go to boarding school (as we lived abroad) and sound like a girl! oops!!! 

 

Committee MemberGordon Urquhart

I am a pharmacist who works in the pharmaceutical industry in Wrexham.

I joined the choir in 2016 having been dragged along kicking and screaming to the Charity Choir by Roger Williams, our current chairman. I had never sung before and expected to be booted out at the first rehearsal.  I eventually joined the full choir, becoming the second Scotsman in the choir.

My first performance was a concert at Tern Hill, Market Drayton.

My favourite venue so far is St Peter’s Church Vienna in 2018 – a magical experience.  My favourite performance was our winning performance at the Llangollen International Eisteddfod in 2018

Joining the choir has added a new dimension to my life.  I am a life-long cynic, but my life-long cynicism was blown away by the buzz I got after my first public performance. I have always wanted to make music in front of an audience – now I can do it regularly supported and encouraged by fifty-odd talented singers.  But watch out – it’s a highly addictive pastime! 

Interesting fact – I used to be the goalkeeper for The Diplomatic Service F.C..  The dirtiest game I played in was against Buckingham Palace F.C., made up of staff from the palace – what a bunch of thugs!

 

JonHaddy.jpgJon Haddy