Being a Chorister at St Edmundsbury Cathedral allows you to:
Meet new friends and be part of a close-knit team in an inclusive and supportive community
Receive a first-rate musical education from highly qualified professionals
Learn to perform at a professional level and sing in front of thousands of people
Have the opportunities to sing in beautiful buildings with incredible acoustics
Gain lifelong skills – self-discipline, confidence, time management, commitment, dedication and teamwork
Visit amazing places around the world
Make recordings and sing on TV and Radio
Receive free weekly singing, piano and musicianship lessons worth £2000 annually
Be offered subsidised lessons on the new cathedral organ (where funding allows)
Receive pocket money
Have fun – it’s not all about the singing Take part in all these activities within a safe and caring environment
Who can be involved?
We welcome children and young people in education in or near Bury St Edmunds aged 7-22. All you need is a passion for singing, a love of learning and to enjoy a challenge! Children will be asked to undertake a short audition to help both you and us decide whether the choir is right for them.
What is the commitment?
The Music Department’s timetable runs to a week A and B structure to maximise performance opportunity whilst keeping commitment levels reasonable.
Week A Week B
Thursday 4.15 – 5.15 pm Thursday 4.15 – 6.15 pm
Friday 4.15 – 7.30 pm Friday 4.15 – 5.15 pm
Sunday 9 am – 12.00 noon Day Off
and 2.45 – 4.30 pm
Week A Week B
Thursday 4.15 – 6.15 pm Thursday 4.15 – 5.15 pm
Friday 4.15 – 5.15 pm Friday 4.15 – 7.30 pm
Day Off Sunday 9 am – 12.00 noon and 2.45 – 4.30 pm
Where do I sing?
For the majority of your career at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, you will be part of a large, caring, supportive and diverse team who provide the cathedral’s daily music. However, the choir often get special opportunities to travel, be part of concerts, recordings and broadcasts. In recent years, the choir has sung:
• Choral Evensong on BBC Radio 3 • In concert with world famous musicians • With professional orchestras in Handel’s Messiah • In St Paul’s Cathedral and many other famous English cathedrals • In Portugal, Germany, France and Italy
What is life like after St Edmundsbury?
Many choristers of cathedral choirs go on to excel in life, reaching the highest rungs of their chosen profession, often due to the transferable skills learned. Choristers develop their dedication, discipline, teamwork, time- management, confidence and commitment and are often able to gain scholarships at schools and universities, reducing tuition fees and presenting numerous opportunities. Former England cricket captain Sir Alastair Cook was a chorister at St Paul’s Cathedral, and claims the focus and concentration required to keep practising whilst keeping up with regular school hours helped with his batting and career as a whole.
How do I get involved?
There is an audition to join the choir. We look mostly for potential and a love of singing. We teach you the rest! All our new singers spend their first year ‘learning the ropes’ and will continue to learn and improve as they go along. Auditions can be scheduled at any time, for your convenience. At the audition you are asked to sing a simple hymn or carol of your choice and participate in some straightforward ear tests. You should be a fluent reader with good concentration. Please feel free to contact Richard Cook, Acting Director of Music, to find out more about the opportunities on offer.
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Chorister recruitment supported by Britten Pears Arts through resources from Friday Afternoons