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Choir of St Johns College, Cambridge

The Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge is one of the finest men and boys choirs in the world, known and loved by millions from its recordings, broadcasts, and concert tours. A cornerstone of the great English choral tradition since the 1670s, it is recognised for its distinctive, rich, and expressive sound. Under the current directorship of Andrew Nethsingha, the Choir is made up of sixteen Choristers and four Probationers who are educated at St John’s College School. The alto, tenor, and bass parts are usually taken by fifteen Undergraduates, with two Organ Scholars assisting in the daily running of the Choir. Frequently broadcast on BBC Radio 3, services in the College Chapel follow the Cathedral tradition of the Church of England, with Evensong six days a week during term and Sung Eucharist on Sunday mornings. On the concert platform, in high-profile venues around the UK, the Choir regularly performs with orchestras and ensembles such as the Philharmonia Orchestra, Britten Sinfonia, Aarhus Symfoniorkester, His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts, and London Mozart Players. In the course of a busy international touring schedule it has visited the USA, Canada, Brazil, South Africa, Japan, Australia, and continental Europe.

The singers receive a unique musical education in an extremely varied repertoire, from Renaissance polyphony and the masses of Haydn to twentieth-century and specially commissioned contemporary music. Committed to engaging with a wide audience through digital innovations, the Choir is the first in Britain to broadcast its services in weekly webcasts all year round, and in 2011 launched SJC Live, an online archive for music lovers and choirmasters. A key innovation of Nethsingha’s is the establishment of St John’s Sinfonia, a professional period-instrument ensemble formed with Margaret Faultless in 2011, with which the Choir gives termly liturgical performances of cantatas by Bach. Under Nethsingha and the former Directors of Music George Guest, Christopher Robinson, and David Hill, the Choir has produced an extraordinary and extensive discography. Since signing an exclusive contract with Chandos Records in 2009, it has released seven CDs, spanning music from across 500 years, which have garnered international critical acclaim. Renowned for championing contemporary music, the Choir of St John’s College, Cambridge regularly commissions new works, and has recently performed the world premieres of works by Jonathan Harvey, James MacMillan, Roxanna Panufnik, Giles Swayne, and Judith Weir. www.sjcchoir.co.uk



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