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The Parish of Christchurch. Christchurch Priory, St George at Jumpers, St John at Purewell

The Priory Choirs

Last updated Wednesday, 20 April, 2016

The Christchurch Priory choirs

The Priory has a long choral tradition. This tradition is continued today with our thriving and expanding music programme. The basic aim of all the choirs is the same: to be able to lead and enhance the worshipping life of this church.

Regular Sunday services are led by the Priory choirs: the boys choir and the girls choir, who each sing alongside the dedicated team of choirmen.
Some Sundays when the main choirs are on holiday are covered by the mixed-voice adult Priory Singers, and the Priory Chamber Choir sings at other special occasions (see bottom of page).

Thursday 

Boys Practice: 3.45-4.45

Friday Full Practice
Boys: 6.15-8.00 (with a break)

Girls: 6.30-8.30 (with a break)

Men: 7.15-9.00

Sunday services (divided between boys and girls choirs):

9.30 Choral Eucharist (9.00 Rehearsal)

11.30 Choral Matins (11.00 Rehearsal)

6.30 Choral Evensong (5.55 Rehearsal)

Special services have separate arrangements.

Choristers benefit from extensive training from professional musicians. This team is led by the Director of Music, Simon Earl. As Director of the Girls Choir, Mary Goodman has an important role in training the girl choristers. They gain recognition for their developing skills through the ribbons awarded through the Royal School of Church Music’s Voice for Life scheme. They are paid, per attendance, according to experience and ribbon level. Extra fees are payable to the choirs when they sing at weddings in the Priory.

The choirs enjoy an active social programme (quizzes, meals, films etc.), and have also been to sing in churches and cathedrals across the South. In 2017 they will embark on their first international tour, travelling to Venice and the surrounding area, singing in a number of places, most notably St Mark’s Basilica. The choirs sometimes sing with other groups, including the choirs of Romsey Abbey, Wimborne Minster, St Peter’s Bournemouth and Derby Cathedral.

For more information about joining any of the choirs, please contact the Director of Music, Simon Earl by emailing music@christchurchpriory.org.

There are spaces available in the boys and girls choirs, and no audition is needed, just enthusiasm, commitment and a love of singing!

The Priory Singers

This is the Priory’s Ladies choir, and sings on some Sundays when the Priory Choir is on holiday, usually about 8 times per year. Rehearsals are held on one or two evenings before each of the Sundays. There is no audition for this choir, though some experience in singing in choirs and/or reading music is an advantage.

The Priory Chamber Choir

This is a mixed-voice, adult choir, but entry is by (informal) audition and the repertoire selected is designed to explore more challenging areas of the choral repertory. Good music reading skills are essential for this choir! The choir sings for some of the Festival services in the year, including Ascension Day, the Easter Vigil and Midnight Mass. They sing a requiem each year for All Souls Day. Rehearsals also take place on the one or two evenings preceding a service.