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Only Men Aloud | Interview with Craig Yates

Wales favourite man band are back at St David's Hall on December 3rd. Only Men Aloud bring their winter tour to the capital just in time for Christmas and if last years spectacular was anything to go by then you'd be mad to miss it. 
We caught up with Craig Yates ahead of their winter gigs.

What can we expect when you perform at St David's Hall?
We always have a fantastic night at St David’s Hall, and this year will be extra special. As well as lots of Only Men Aloud hits, and all of your Christmas favourites, we are going to be joined by the brilliant Only Kids Aloud Chorus. They are a group of 9-13 year olds, from all over Wales who are all incredible singers. We can’t wait to hear them sing with us! We have also got some brand new routines and songs, which we are really looking forward to performing.

You've played some amazing venues over the years, which has been your favourite?
The two that really stand out for me is the opening ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games, where we sang as the Olympic Flame was being lit. We had the best seats in the house and the most incredible view of the ceremony. The other is when we sang in Washington DC as part of the Smithsonian Festival. We were singing on the Mall, outside the Capital Building, with views of the White House. Both will live long in my memory!

Is there a particular favourite song amongst the band?
We all have different favourites, but we particularly love this time of year when we can get great songs like O Holy Night and Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas out. We love singing them, and our audiences seem to enjoy them too. We’re told Christmas can officially start for many people after they have heard those two songs!

You've sang in front of royalty plus other important people, what goes through your mind when singing for such audiences?
We’ve been so lucky to meet and sing for some very famous people. You just have to focus, ignore they are there, and do the best job you can. It can be really difficult to not just watch them, and gauge their reaction to our singing, but we hope they have always enjoyed what we have performed for them.

Who would your dream duet be with?
We have done a medley of Tom Jones songs that we have recently got out again. It would be amazing to sing them with the man himself! He could teach us a few of his legendary hip moves!

So what happens when the Only Boys Aloud members become men, will there be openings to join the band?
We already have one ex-OBA member in the ranks. Tom Hier was in Only Boys Aloud from the very beginning, and when we were on the look out for a new tenor a couple of years ago, Tom auditioned and has been with us since. It’s brilliant to see the journey that the members of OBA have made over the years. Tom was going to study Geography at university, but being in OBA showed him that a career in singing could be possible, and he hasn’t looked back since.

What are you hoping to get for Christmas this year? 
I have recently moved house, so it will hopefully be lots of things we need for the house and garden. Gone are the days of hoping for that exciting toy or gadget - I must be getting old!

My writing partner Nathan  Wyburn creates celebrity portraits using food, if you was to have your portraits done with food what would it be and why?
It has to be Chocolate for me. I am a massive chocoholic, so that would be amazing. It would just be hard not to eat it once it was done! 


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