Since the foundation of the college in 1517, choral music has played an important part in the worship of Corpus Christi College Chapel. The original college statutes made provision for a choir of just five members to sing daily services. Today, the Choir is made up of over twenty singers drawn from across the college – Junior, Middle and Senior Common Rooms – and from beyond Corpus. We welcome singers of any religion and none, and of every level of confidence. Our programme of music is sufficiently varied to ensure that every ability of singer is comfortable but also has the opportunity to try new music and perhaps even be challenged a bit. The choir is very friendly, welcoming and student-run. We don’t audition, but we do aim for the highest musical standards.
The level of commitment for choir members is very reasonable. During the term, the choir sings Evensong on Sundays, with occasional services during the week for special occasions, such as carol services, Ash Wednesday and Corpus Christi Day. The choir also has a termly slot to sing Evensong in Christ Church Cathedral. Our singing doesn't stop at the doors of the chapel: we often provide musical entertainment at special dinners, and at the annual Tortoise Fair, for example. We have general good times together, usually involving food, including three free formal dinners a term, and termly trips to Pizza Express. The choir undertakes regular tours around the UK and abroad. In 2017 the choir went to Rome, singing in all the papal basilicas, including St Peter’s. Our most recent trip was to Ireland, where we sang in Cathedrals in Dublin, Belfast, Armagh and Enniskillen. Plans for upcoming trips abroad are already in the pipeline.
Eight choral bursaries are given out each year. We do audition for these, early in Michaelmas Term. £150 and six free singing lessons per year are awarded to two reliable singers from each voice part.
Singers are most welcome to join us at any point throughout the year. Our main rehearsal is on Friday in the college auditorium from 5:30pm to 7pm. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the Senior Organ Scholar, Matthew (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the Associate Director of Music, Rory (email@example.com), especially if you are interested in a choral bursary. You can read more about the choir and access our music list via this link: https://www.ccc.ox.ac.uk/Chapel-Choir/, and be sure to give us a like on our Facebook page, where you will find regular updates.