Choral and Organ Scholarship Opportunity (Christ Church, Reading)

Music at Christ Church:

Christ Church is a welcoming Church of England church with a proud and ambitious musical tradition. Music at our church ranges from traditional hymn singing to fully sung choral services.  There are at least four choral services a month as well as festival services and concerts.

The choir, of approximately 30 members, sings a wide range of music from the Anglican, European and spiritual traditions.  Our repertoire ranges from plainsong to Palestrina, from Haydn to Howells, Bach to Brahms and embraces compositions by contemporary musicians.  In recent years the choir has sung services at Winchester Cathedral and Salisbury Cathedral.

The role of the Organ and Choral Scholars:

The Organ Scholars accompany hymn singing, play before and after the service and accompany the choir.  The Organ Scholars help with rehearsals and with training the younger members of the choir.  The Choral Scholars sing services with the choir throughout the year, as part of the regular pattern of services at Christ Church.

Choral and Organ Scholars are asked to be present to take part in rehearsals and choral services, although we recognise that life is often busy, so there is some flexibility with other commitments, especially around exam periods.

Development and mentoring:

The Choral Scholarship comes with a payment of £150-£750 (depending on experience and ability). Singing lessons are also available as part of the scholarship.

The Organ Scholarship comes with a payment of £600-£1100 (depending on experience and ability). There is also an additional grant for organ lessons of up to £750 and singing lessons are also available as part of the scholarship.

For exceptional candidates, additional fees may be available for performing at festival services, weddings and funerals.  Depending on the experience, skills and interests of the Organ and Choral Scholars, there may be opportunities to perform solos, direct rehearsals, conduct the choir in services, study harmony and composition and have music composed by you sung by the choir.

Skills and experience required:

Successful applicants will have good team work skills and the ability and willingness to learn new music quickly.  For guidance, applicants for a Choral Scholarship should be Grade 5+ (or RSCM Silver award) standard in singing.  Applicants for an Organ Scholarship should be Grade 6+ standard in piano or organ.  Musicians from all backgrounds, including those without any experience of church music, are welcome to apply.

The previous dozen or so Organ and Choral scholars at Christ Church include individuals who have gone on to study Music at undergraduate and postgraduate level, conduct choirs, be the Musical Director for stage shows, and complete a range of other work as professional musicians and educators.

Further information and applications:

There are five scholarships which are available from the beginning of the academic year 2021/22. To request further information about music at Christ Church, to apply or to arrange an informal discussion please contact the Director of Music, Jamie Hudson: music.ccreading@gmail.com

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