Proud Welshman and “massive” supporter of the Wales rugby team Al Roberts loves his rugby, has a lovely baritone voice and loves to sing. Mansfield & District MVC blog caught up with on the eve of the Wales v England match in Cardiff and with St David’s day just around the corner.
The best piece of advice I would give to anybody is work hard and grow your confidence
Where were you born and when did you start singing? – I was born in Pwllheli, North Wales and started singing probably around the age of 4. I sang in Sunday school and in Chapel and took part in all the usual activities at school – Nativity plays and all that. I also took part and sang solos in the Urdd National Eisteddfod, one of the biggest youth festivals in Europe.
What were your musical influences growing up? – My dad was a massive influence. He was a member of a band and played bass. He was also a decent singer and joined a male voice choir – Brythoniad MVC in the early 1980s. That Choir sang with some big name acts including Shirley Bassey and performed on TV on numerous occasions. I got to sing with them at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff a couple of years back.
How long have you been with Mansfield and how did you get involved? – I joined the choir 11 years ago. I had moved up from Cardiff and was looking to get involved singing with a Choir. My dad and brother were in Brythoniad MVC and I was looking for the same sort of thing. I didn’t know anybody here, I just did a cold search and just showed up one Tuesday night. I was very pleased to find out that Mansfield were a member of the Welsh Association of Male Choirs.
What other types of music do you listen to? – My musical tastes are so varied. I enjoy country music and a big fan of Dolly Parton but I also like heavy rock music like AC/DC.
Tell us a little bit about your passion for rugby. –I am involved very much on coaching these days. I coach the u12 boys up at Mansfield Rugby Club, where my son plays. I also coach the u18 girl’s team. We are especially proud of the girl’s achievements; we have managed to get six of our girls on the England Rugby Centre of Excellence player pathway and two on the Training Group for England. The team itself are ranked in the top 16 in the country.
What is the best thing about being in a choir and what advice would you give to a new chorister? – I really enjoy the banter and the comaradarie of being in the Choir and the best peice of advice I would give to anybody is work hard and grow your confidence