Strength in the face of frailty

Did you see the documentary on Channel 4 last night about the Young at Heart Chorus? It isn’t often that Hels and I sit to watch television together, but this was an outstanding documentary about an amazing project with a splendid bunch of people that had us riveted, alternately laughing and crying. There is a planned DVD release. The part with Fred Knittle, given two years to live just over two years previously, carrying his oxygen supply on stage as he sang Coldplay’s Fix You as a solo performance after his duet partner, Joe Benoit, had died just a few days before will bring a lump to your throat.

The most impresive character is Bob Cilman, the director. Coaxing, encouraging and, at times, herding this group of wilful octagenarians into performing a stage set that has travelled the world is a great feat of determination – the fact that the performers derive more from it than the audience is not lost on the viewer.

2 Replies to “Strength in the face of frailty”

  1. My favourite programme of the year. As you say, Fred’s take on Fix You was just so incredibly moving. Loved the ex-marine, too – what a character.

  2. This documentary sounds great. I can’t wait to see it. I saw another really fantastic film about the Young at Heart Chorus a few years ago. It was very touching and beautifully-done. If you enjoy this film or fall in love with the Chorus and want to see more, definitely check out Forever Young at Heart: The Earlier Years at!

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