Men Who Sing a “humorous and melancholic” portrait of a Flintshire male voice choir hits cinemas this week
The Male Voice Choir is a Welsh institution and one of the most indelible symbols of the country all over the world.
But as an institution it is also one in crisis, with rapidly decreasing numbers and an ageing membership.
Men Who Sing is the story of a Flintshire choir that refuses to go gently into that good night.
Dylan William’s heartwarming feature documentary which arrives in cinemas on Friday, November 5, charts the attempt to bring new life into Trelawnyd Male Voice Choir.
The humorous and melancholic portrait of the Flintshire choir begins when the filmmakers’ father, widower Ed, 90, sells the family home and arranges his own funeral.
His only remaining solace is Tuesday night practice, but with an average age of 74 and suffering a haemorrhaging of the bass section his beloved choir is facing a crisis of its own. They must act or face extinction.
So, the hunt begins to find ‘brown-haired men’ in their 40s and 50s who can take the choir forward.
Whilst Ed finds new meaning, Merf deals with his own bad news by focusing on the Choirs revival and Gwyn laughs at his prostate cancer diagnosis and walks on the wing of a plane to raise money.
Finally, they raise themselves and travel to Northern Ireland to perform for the first time in 20 years.
Director, Dylan Williams said the story began “when my father telephoned me for the first time since I had moved to Sweden 15 years earlier, to tell me that he had sold our family home and was busy throwing the majority of its contents into a hired skip.”
“Upon my return to help him move, I found him preparing his funeral arrangements”
“Despite enjoying excellent health, he is nonetheless 90, and since the death of my mother he had felt increasingly isolated.”
“The one notable outlier however was his beloved choir. For almost 70 years my father has been the bottom bass in the Trelawnyd Male Voice Choir, situated in the neglected former industrial area of North East Wales.”
“I followed him to practice on the first night of my arrival and found myself faced with a room full of men that I have known since my childhood—all now in their eighties but still singing together.”
“The decision to make a film came straight from my heart.”
“It is a humorous melancholic tale that deals with loneliness, old age, as well as community and friendship as a group of proud choristers fight to find new blood to keep their beloved choir alive.”
Cinema screenings from 05 November:
Theatr Clwyd, Mold (05–10 Nov)
Storyhouse, Chester (13 Nov, 16 Nov)
Picturehouse at FACT, Liverpool (16 Nov, 07 Dec)
Pontio, Bangor (16–18 Nov)
Cell B, Blaenau Ffestiniog (12 Nov)
More screenings can be found here: https://www.dartmouthfilms.com/menwhosing
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