Calling all Musicians

Your invitation to make music at Canterbury Christ Church University.

Ensembles are open to any student studying any subject. You do not have to be a music student to sign up.

Some groups are entirely open – anyone can join without an audition.

Most ensembles, however, are auditioned at the start of the academic year.

Don't forget to visit the School of Music and Performing Arts home page  read our MPA blog (please ask a member of staff about how you can contribute to this!)  and find out about the Music Society .

Brass Panel Audition Results 2018

Woodwind Panel Audition Results 2018

Vocal Panel Audition Results 2018

Strings Panel Audition Results 2018


Director: David Allinson

Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 5.30pm for 90 minutes, St Gregory’s (starting 3 October)

This large, friendly non-auditioned choir performs a range of repertoire from the Renaissance to the present day, but with an emphasis on core Classical repertoire. We participate in major events including the Carols by Candlelight service and the annual cathedral concert. Open to staff, students and local people without audition, members are expected to commit and work to a high standard.


Director: The University Conducting Scholar

Rehearsals: Thursdays, 4.15pm for rehearsal and 5.30pm service in the University Chapel (starting 20 September). The service lasts about half an hour and is followed by free food and drink.

This dynamic and friendly choir exists to support worship in the University community. Comprising a mixture of non-auditioned singers and Choral Scholars, it provides a rich and varied musical programme, giving singers and congregation alike a taste of the wonderful Anglican musical tradition. The choir also sings elsewhere - including services in Canterbury Cathedral - and occasionally tours further afield. (Enquiries: or simply show up at the first rehearsal.)

If you are interested in auditioning for a Choral, Conducting or Organ Scholarship, please see the entry under Auditioned Ensembles below.


Director: Vince Peilow

Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 7.00pm for two hours, University Chapel (starting 26 September)

An inclusive, non-auditioned choir that brings together students, staff and alumni that has achieved 3rd place in University Gospel Choir of the Year in both 2016 and 2017. Experience singing in a choir and learning vocal techniques to bring out that big Gospel sound. Ability to read music not essential. Music from a repertoire of traditional and contemporary Gospel songs to be performed at University and external events.

Contact us at Fresher’s Fayre, via Facebook  @CanterburyCCGC

Email: or for more information.


The Society expects to run the following ensembles. Connect with the Society at Fresher’s Fayre or email for more details - or simply sign up for an audition that includes entry to these ensembles. 

Some ensembles are open to anyone, others require an audition(sign up to the audition panels for the University’s Directed Ensembles: they give you access to our ensembles, too). Note that membership of the Student Union Music Society (£20) is mandatory for all members of Music Society ensembles. Here are ensembles that we hope to run in the 2018–19 academic year:

  • Society Wind Band
  • A cappella vocal groups
  • Recorder Ensemble
  • String Orchestra
  • Society Choir (no audition)
  • Various jazz, rock and pop Bands
  • Songwriting Collective


Director: Matt Wright

Rehearsals: Monday, 5.30–7pm, Coleridge Annexe (starting 24 September)

Combining new music, sound and visuals by staff and students, this new ensemble not only bridges the divide between the arts, it seeks to demolish categories and boundaries. This workshop-based ensemble moves seamlessly between the worlds of contemporary ‘art’ music, pop, and electronics.

Membership of these professionally-directed groups is by audition only:

  • University Symphony Orchestra
  • University String Orchestra
  • Early Music Ensemble
  • University Wind Band
  • Big Band
  • University Chamber Choir
  • Top Voices (sopranos and altos only)
  • Broadway Choir
  • Chapel Choir Scholars
  • Session Choir
  • The Songs of Donald Fagan & Steely Dan

Instrumentalists: A single audition covers Symphony Orchestra, String Orchestra, University Wind Ensemble, Early Music Ensemble and Big Band. Simply sign up to be heard by the relevant Panel.

Singers: A single audition covers Chamber Choir, Top Voices and Early Music Ensemble.

Broadway Choir auditions are heard by a separate Panel on Wednesday 23 January 2019.

To join Commercial Music ensembles (Session Choir and The Songs of Donald Fagan & Steely Dan), turn up to watch the first rehearsal and audition to the conductor at the end. (See tab below for more details.)

Auditions for Chapel Scholarships (Choral, Organ and Conducting) are held separately (see here).

All players and singers including members of last year’s ensembles need to audition – nobody has an automatic right to a place in any ensemble.

Come to the Freshers Fair in Augustine Hall on Wednesday 19 September to sign up, or visit Coleridge House any time before Monday 24, 5pm. If you turn up on the day without having booked a time, you will not be able to audition.

At your audition, you will be asked to perform a short piece of your own choosing and to take a sight-reading test. The piece should be chosen to show off your technical proficiency and tone quality. (n.b.: your piece should be appropriate in style to the group you hope to join – so for Chamber Choir or Symphony Orchestra a classical piece of music is expected.)

Concert and rehearsal schedules for the whole year will be available at the audition so you can see what membership of your desired ensemble involves.

If you are offered and accept a place in any ensemble, it is expected that you commit to attend all rehearsals and concerts for the whole year.

Didn’t get into an ensemble? Commiserations. But all is not lost! Find out more about your options on this page. 

Director: Martin Outram

Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 3.00pm for two hours, St Gregory’s (starting 3 October)

The flagship Symphony Orchestra performs masterpieces from all periods and from many musical genres, including works by Christ Church students. We perform at the annual Cathedral concert and the University’s other major concerts. We collaborate with University choirs in performances of major choral works.

Director: David Allinson

Rehearsals: Thursdays, 7.00pm for two hours, St Gregory’s (starting 4 October)

The University’s elite chamber choir performs choral music of all periods and styles to the highest standard, with an emphasis on the Renaissance and modern periods. A friendly, hardworking and dynamic group, we give several concerts on campus during the academic year, perform at graduation ceremonies and in the annual cathedral concert – and participate in the annual Cathedral Group Choirs Festival. Full commitment and a good standard of sight-reading are required.

Director: Martin Outram

Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 7.15-8:15pm, St Gregory's (starting 3 October)

Welcoming string players from across the University, we perform repertoire ranging from the Baroque to the present day. There are opportunities for concerto playing and we hold workshops for composers to try out new music.

We perform at the annual Cathedral concert and at other major University concerts and constitute the string section of the Symphony Orchestra.

Director: Robert Rawson


Rehearsals: Thursday, 9-10:30am St Gregory's (starting 4th October)

We perform vocal and instrumental music from the 16th to the 18th centuries, usually performing on two occasions each year. In the past the group has toured abroad, and we would like to do this again. All instruments and voice types welcome. This year we are particularly seeking keen singers.

Director: Chris Price

Rehearsals: Mondays, 7pm - 8:30pm MDf04 (starting 8 October)

This quality, versatile group of sopranos and altos offers a challenging but rewarding experience of small-ensemble singing. 

Repertoire includes everything from medieval chant to arrangements of jazz standards and comic song, with sacred and secular music of all the centuries in between.

Director: Phil Hornsey 


Rehearsals: Wednesdays, 7pm - 9pm MDf04 (starting 30 January)

Auditions Wednesday 23 January - look for notices. 

Broadway Choir performs a wide range of songs from the musical theatre repertoire. Members learn all material ‘off copy’ and when it comes to show time, perform the songs with movement and complete commitment!

Runs to a concert on Fri 12 April, then the ensemble becomes the onstage chorus for the summer Musical.

Director: Steve Waterman

Rehearsals: Tuesdays, 7.00pm for two hours, Maxwell Davies MDg01 (starting 9 October)

Brass, woodwind and percussion players: join this gigging band. We perform classic Big Band arrangements of swing and jazz to the highest standard and are also interested in students arranging and composing for the group.

Director: University Conducting Scholar

Rehearsals: Thursdays, 4.15pm for rehearsal and 5.30pm service in the University Chapel (starting 21 September). The service lasts about half an hour and is followed by free food and drink. Scholars also attend an additional weekly rehearsal and sing at University graduation ceremonies.

Each year Christ Church offers at least four Choral Scholarships for the University Chapel Choir: one on each voice part (Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass; note that countertenors and contraltos are equally welcome) and at least one Organ/Conducting scholarship.

Choral Scholarships are worth £800 per annum and Organ/Conducting scholarships are worth £1,000 per annum.

For more details of Scholars’ duties and an application form please visit the Chapel Scholarship page.

Director: Tony Castro

Rehearsals: Mondays 7-9pm, St Gregory's (starting 8 October)

One of the University’s flagship ensembles, comprising woodwind, brass and percussion players (students and staff) from all programmes, we perform a wide range of exciting and challenging music from the popular, modern and classic wind orchestra repertoire.

Director: Simon Foster

Rehearsals: Mondays 1-2:30pm, MDg01 (starting 1 October)

This ensemble will be covering choral and a cappella versions of songs by artists like Imogen Heap, Outkast, Labi Siffre and Sara Bareilles. The Session Choir also provides backing vocals when required by other Commercial Music ensembles.

Audition by showing up at the first rehearsal. Places will be made available according to the overall profile of the group. Full commitment is required!

Director: Lawrie Bolton

Rehearsals: day and venue TBC

Calling brass and sax players! Join us to revel in the work of American rockers that blends jazz, R and B and traditional pop in an intoxicating mix.


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Last edited: 13/12/2018 18:24:00