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Choir of Hard Knocks

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Formed in Melbourne, Australia in 2006 as a way to encourage homeless and disadvantaged people to get their lives back on track, the Choir of Hard Knocks is the brainchild of conductor and choirmaster Jonathan Welch. Having spent over 30 years as an internationally known tenor opera vocalist, Welch was inspired to form his Choir of Hard Knocks after reading about a similar ensemble in Montreal, Canada. With the help of the RecLink charity organization that sets up sporting events for homeless people, Welch contacted various other charity agencies as well as put up flyers notifying people of the first choir rehearsal. Ultimately, the choir attracted around 50 vocalists -- some with drug and alcohol problems -- and the members worked toward recording a CD from which the profits went toward a live concert at Melbourne Town Hall. The choir was documented in an ongoing ABC reality television show in Australia and has released a CD related to the show. ~ Matt Collar

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2006 in Melbourne, Australia

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