Ben Inman of The Choirboys

PHOTO: Ben Inman as a young chorister

PHOTO: The Choirboys album cover

PHOTO: Ben Inman performing on Top Of The Pops

PHOTO: Ben Inman as Head Chorister of Southwell Minster

Biography

Ben Inman was born in North Yorkshire in 1993 and his musical ability was clear to his parents from an early age: he could sing in tune even before he could talk.

In 2001, at the age of 8, Ben and his family moved to near Southwell in Nottinghamshire and Ben auditioned for and was accepted as a chorister at Southwell Minster, the cathedral of the Anglican Diocese of Southwell and Nottingham. As well as participating in the regular daily and weekly round of services at the Minster, Ben also went on international tours with the choir, performed solos with professional choirs and orchestras across the UK, and participated in TV and radio broadcasts from the Minster.

In 2005, following a nationwide search by talent scouts from Universal Music, Ben was selected, along with two choristers from Ely Cathedral, to become The Choirboys – a new treble 'boy band'. Their album – a mix of classic cathedral repertoire and more popular, crossover tracks – was released in December of that year and went gold in just four days, becoming the fastest-selling classical début album ever. The Choirboys phenomenon caused wide media interest, which led to numerous radio and TV appearances, including on the pre-Christmas edition of BBC TV's iconic chart show Top Of The Tops, where Ben sang the lead in the seasonal classic Walking In The Air.

His involvement with The Choirboys attracted further attention for Ben and he was selected for the solo boy vocal on the soundtrack of the 2005 remake of King Kong, singing the high, plaintive melody during Kong's death scene.

In February 2006, following on from their UK success, The Choirboys album was released in Japan. To coincide with this, the boys went on a promotional tour of the country, featuring on radio and TV (to audiences of over 3 million), as well as making live appearances. From Japan, The Choirboys popularity spread across East Asia, notably to Taiwan and China.

Throughout all this, Ben remained a faithful member of the Minster Choir and in June 2006 was promoted to Head Chorister, a position of some responsibility. In December of that year, Ben's singing was brought to the attention of a wider audience once more when BBC Radio broadcast a live choral evensong from Southwell, which included a short solo performance from Ben.

Only a month later, in January 2007, after 5½ years as a chorister, the time came for Ben to retire from the Minster Choir and to rest his now changing voice. His departure from the choir brought praise for Ben's achievements as a treble, some of the most effusive being from his choirmaster, Paul Hale:

Ben Inman has been the most ‘complete’ chorister I have had in my nearly eighteen years here. He was blessed with a naturally beautiful voice that could soar effortlessly to high Cs or sing a melodic line with innate expressiveness an octave lower. Fine breath control and complete confidence in the reliability of his voice meant that in his senior years in the choir I could always rely on him...

Even though no longer a treble, Ben’s treble reputation and fame continued to grow. In September 2007, The Choirboys album went Platinum, having reached 300,000 UK sales, and in December, Ben received another accoloade in the form of a Trebby Award for Fairest Isle.

Although not performing publicly as a singer at present, Ben continues to study with international soprano soloist Nicky Kennedy. His voice is currently somewhere in the tenor/baritone range.