June 6, 2012

Only Boys Aloud

In the community training programs I offer, I'm always encouraging men to simply take what they love to do and share it with the young males around them. If a couple of men are willing, and have the patience to start small, an open invitation to these interest-based programs will eventually attract other men and young males. I have previously profiled many successful examples of this approach on this blog and in the Man-Making book.

One stellar example of the success of this idea is Only Boys Aloud, or OBA. The short story is it's the result of a few men who like to sing deciding to become man-makers for about 175 young males. Turn up the volume and watch this video. Experience the boys' confidence, pride, and enthusiasm, then read the story below.

Only Boys Aloud (OBA) is a choir made up of approximately 175 young men, aged fourteen to nineteen, from South Wales in the United Kingdom. OBA was founded in May 2010 by the men of the choral group, Only Men Aloud (OMA). The boys are mentored and trained by nine members of OMA and supported by volunteers from their communities. The goal in establishing OBA came out of the desire to, "re-invigorate the Welsh male choral tradition." Their website also states a second goal, to challenge the, "long-held misconceptions about teenage males from South Wales."
To challenge the long-held misconceptions
about teenage males from South Wales
The boys rehearse weekly in OBA choirs in their local communities. They come from nine different towns across South Wales with names like Cross Hands, Cwmbran, Treorchy, and Caerphilly. They rehearse as individual choirs and then come together to rehearse and perform as a mega-choir at regular intervals.

The very wise men in charge make sure the guys are physically warmed up prior to singing, and they enlisted some very "motivational" girls to lead those warm up exercises. Check out the hot clip on the top right side of the OBA homepage. In the video gallery on the site, you can listen to some of the OBA concerts and even hear some of the individual choirs performing alone.

Only Men Aloud was formed in 2000 as a solid group of men sharing their love of fellowship and music. In just two years of including young males in their passion for music, these men have created an amazing and very vocal young male tribe. Their work with young guys is certainly changing the "long-held misconceptions about teenage males from South Wales," and clearly changing the lives of men, boys, and their communities in the process.

Do you know a boy who'd like to be part of something like Only Boys Aloud? If you're a man, what could you and a couple of your men friends create that might include some young guys? It just might be that easy!

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1 comment:

  1. Dave B.7:30 AM

    Excellent Story Earl. I love seeing all these boys so happy making music. I have such fond memories of my time as a kid in the choir at my church, especially singing at Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve. And today I continue to feel real joy when I am singing.


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