"A spectacular occasion" - Evensong with London's Inner Voices raises the roof of Jesus College Chapel

The ground-breaking chamber choir, Inner Voices, formed of young people from a number of inner London state schools, visited Cambridge for a residential weekend between 9th and 11th November, seeing the sights, rehearsing in Trinity and Queens' Colleges, and singing Evensong with the College Choir at Jesus College. Mark Williams, Director of Music at Jesus College, who conducted the service, commented on the musicianship, enthusiasm and professionalism of the group: "It was extremely impressive to see youngsters for whom Evensong is not at all a familiar concept embracing the experience with such willingness and dedication. Many of the Choir sang most of the pieces for the service from memory, never once looking at their copies and singing with 100% commitment to the music and to the occasion." One visitor described the experience of being in the College's ancient candlelit Chapel for the service as "absolutely awesome", and the student members of Jesus College Choir were delighted to have the opportunity to make music with such a talented group of young singers. After the service, members of Inner Voices were able to chat to current Choral Scholars about their musical and academic lives over supper in the College's Upper Hall. It was, in the words of Ed Watkins, the founder of Inner Voices, "a great experience".

Inner Voices rehearse with Jesus Choir

Posted on 23 November 2012

Jesus College Choirs feature in 'Cathedral Music' magazine

Our very own Director of Music, Mark Williams, recently featured in 'Cathedral Music'; in an interview for the magazine, he discusses the Choirs and Chapel of the College. You can read the article in its entirety here. For more information on the work of the Friends of Cathedral Music, click here.

Posted on 18 November 2012

'Stranded' Choir Returns to the USA for Christmas

The Choirs of Jesus College Cambridge will be making a series of appearances on the west coast of the USA in December. The Choir made international headlines on its last visit to the USA, in December 2010, when it was stranded in Washington DC as heavy snowfall forced Heathrow Airport in London to close. The youngest member of the group, chorister Arthur Considine, is just nine years old, whilst all of the adult singers are students at the University of Cambridge, studying a wide range of subjects. The Director of Music, Mark Williams, who has been a regular visitor to the area as an organist and conductor, is delighted that the Choir will be singing in cities which he has enjoyed visiting in the past. He says, "I have been privileged to perform in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco at various times in the last decade or so, and my fondness for this part of the United States has grown through annual visits to Portland Oregon for the International William Byrd Festival. I have always felt very welcome here and I am thrilled to be able to introduce the young singers of Jesus College Choir to these three wonderful cities. The opportunity for the Choir to share the beautiful music of Advent and Christmas with the people of Seattle, Portland and San Francisco is one that I am looking forward to enormously."

The Choir, which is made up of fourteen boy choristers and twenty-six male and female undergraduate choral scholars, will perform seasonal music by composers from the sixteenth to the twenty-first centuries in their concerts at Our Lady of Fatima Seattle, St Mary's Cathedral Portland and St Paul's Episcopal Church Oakland, in addition to singing at various services and events. Please see here for more details.

Posted on 18 November 2012

Jesus College to welcome Berkshire Youth Choir for Evensong

The College Choir will welcome Berkshire Youth Choir to sing a joint service of Choral Evensong on Saturday 20 October. This will be a happy reunion for new soprano Choral Scholar Julia Sinclair, who used to sing with Berkshire Youth Choir, and has just begun a degree in Engineering at Cambridge.

Berkshire Youth Choir is based in Reading, comprising boys and girls aged 14-19 who sing a wide variety of music, from Palestrina and Mozart to Simon and Garfunkel. The students enjoy a busy schedule of concerts and tours, as well as collaborations with the BBC Singers, and many have continued to sing in ensembles such as the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. Further details about the Choir may be found here.

The Choirs of Jesus College enjoy the opportunity to welcome visitors to the College’s beautiful Chapel, with one or two choirs visiting every term; as well as Berkshire Youth Choir this month, we look forward in November to welcoming Inner Voices, a choir comprising children from inner London state schools. Members of Berkshire Youth Choir will spend the day in Cambridge, visiting famous sites and perhaps even braving the river for some Autumnal punting. They will then have the opportunity to discover more about life in Cambridge from current Choral and Organ Scholars - who study a wide array of subjects at the University - over tea before rehearsing and performing in the Chapel alongside the College Choir.

The service itself includes music by Howells and Stanford, and begins at 6.30pm, although members of the congregation are advised to arrive earlier since seating within the inner Chapel is limited.

Posted on 12 October 2012

Head Chorister reaches the final of the BBC's Young Chorister of the Year competition

Congratulations to our Head Chorister, Ali Austin, who reached the final of the BBC's Young Chorister of the Year, broadcast on BBC Radio 2 on 4th November. Although he wasn't the overall winner of the competition, Ali sang 'Dear Lord and Father of Mankind' and Richard Rodney Bennett's 'Evening Hymn' extremely well, and enjoyed chatting with Aled Jones in front of the audience at St Martin-in-the-Fields. It was a busy term for Ali, who also appeared as Harry in English Touring Opera's production of Albert Herring by Benjamin Britten in West Road Concert Hall, Cambridge on 17th and 19th October.

Posted on 8 September 2012

Choir Newsletter

The latest Choir newsletter may be downloaded here.