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Today, the Minster’s world-class choir and organists perform at services most days during term-time, with the repertoire ranging from some of the earliest known choral music, to newly commissioned works.
A range of concerts and recitals takes place throughout the year – see our What’s On section for details – ensuring music plays an integral part in the most celebrated festivals and poignant moments at the Minster.
York Minster has one of the UK’s leading cathedral choirs; its mastery of the English choral tradition is one of the cathedral’s crowning glories.
It includes adult Songmen, choral scholars and boy and girl choristers aged between 7 and 13 who are educated at St Peter’s School York, the Choir School for York Minster. The cathedral was among the first to introduce girl choristers, who share the singing equally with the boys at eight sung services each week during term time.
If you are thinking of making a special journey to hear our choir, you can check details of our services, including the Service Scheme on our What’s On section.
Joining the choir
York Minster’s choristers receive an excellent education at St Peter’s School. The Chapter of York provides a bursary for each chorister worth 60% of their school fees with means-tested funding potentially increasing the level of funding to 100%.
Competition for places in the choir is high but the rewards are substantial. Choristers have the opportunity to sing in one of the world’s most magnificent cathedrals each day, as well as taking part in recordings, live TV and radio broadcasts and international tours. Please find more information on how to apply here or contact Sara Bath for further details.Email Sara Bath
Joining the Choir
The choir has seven Songmen who are paid, professional singers committed to maintaining and developing musical standards at the cathedral. The five Choral Scholars are paid student singers who gain experience in church music, working alongside professional musicians.
For further details, contact the Director of Music, Robert Sharpe.Email Us
Joining the Choir
Deputy singers substitute on an occasional basis for our permanent Songmen and Choral Scholars. If you would be interested in auditioning for the deputy list and are an experienced singer with good sight reading skills, please contact Robert Sharpe, Director of Music.Email Us
The choir has made a number of acclaimed recordings which are available to buy from the York Minster Shop.Click here
During the Minster Choir’s holidays there is an opportunity for other choirs to sing at services. Interested choirs should be able to sing psalms, responses, settings of the canticles and anthems at Evensong, as well as music for the Eucharist if singing on a Sunday. Choirs will be asked to send a recent live recording in advance of their visit.
For further information, please contact Ben Morris, Assistant Director of Music on t: 01904 559511, e: firstname.lastname@example.org or download visiting details below.
For information on the YMCA and membership enquiries, download their PDF here.Download
Director of Music
Robert joined the Minster in 2008 and is responsible for organising and directing all aspects of the Minster’s music, as well as arranging its programme of concerts, broadcasts and tours. He is a well-known organ recitalist and has made a number of acclaimed recordings as a choral director and organist.Learn more
Assistant Director of Music
Since joining the cathedral in 2015, Ben’s role involves playing for services and to accompany the choir in the cathedral’s daily cycle of music, as well as supporting the training of the choristers. He is a prizewinning Fellow of the Royal College of Organists and is increasingly engaged as an organ soloist.
Philip Moore was Organist and Master of Music at York Minster from 1983 to 2008. Download a complete list of his compositions, covering more than 50 years and 400 pieces.Download
Dr Francis Jackson CBE is Organist Emeritus of York Minster, serving as the Minster’s Organist and Master of Music from 1946 to 1982. Download a list of his choral and instrumental works below.Download
Cathedral Music Trust is a voice for cathedral music, upholding this integral part of the nation’s cultural heritage by campaigning on behalf of cathedral music and musicians, supporting cathedral choirs and choristers in need, and encouraging the pursuit of excellence in choral and organ music. Harry Christophers CBE, founder and conductor of The Sixteen, is its President, and presenter, comedian and actor Alexander Armstrong is its Ambassador. York Minster is one of the choral foundations that has benefited from Cathedral Music Trust’s support. For more information visit: www.cathedralmusictrust.org.uk
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