St Giles’ Choir is the church choir and sings on Sunday morning services and at special services throughout the year. The choir is affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) and performs a wide ranging repertoire from traditional Anglican anthems to brand-new compositions.
In order to sing music on a weekly basis, an essential skill is the ability to read music. All choir members are taught how to read music whilst learning how to use their voices well, maintaining a good posture and developing their general musicianship skills.
Being a member of the choir requires dedication – not least in terms of attending rehearsals and sometimes participating in long services! But there are also fantastic rewards! There is a regular termly treat – ranging from pizza night to a trip to Thorpe Park. Choristers are also encouraged to train for the RSCM’s ‘Voice for Life’ medals, which helps to develop singing and hone techniques. And weekly tuition in an instrument is available for a discounted rate as part of a scholarship scheme. Most importantly though, you have the opportunity to become a valued member of a team – something which will stay with you forever!
If you’re interested in joining the choir – we hold auditions throughout the year. These usually involve singing a hymn (with accompaniment) and some basic aural tests. Rehearsals take place on Friday evenings at 7.15pm for an hour and before the main 10am Parish Mass on Sunday at 9.30am.
To find out more, please contact Ashley, the Musical Director at St Giles’.
What some of our choristers say…
‘It’s been a great experience to be in St Giles Choir because it has helped me with my singing and helps me to sing loudly. In choir we learn how to sing with a good posture, like standing up straight and putting our hands by our sides. The choir has amused a lot of people who might want to join the choir with our lovely new cassocks. In my opinion Ashley has been a great choir teacher and will continue to the choir for many years to come’.
‘Being in the choir is fun and exhausting! But mostly fun. Our teacher Ashley Valentine, who has a great personality, is a pleasure to have as a teacher. But what I like most of all about being in the choir is that I get to sing and learn some new songs because I love singing and worshipping God. And that’s what I have to say about being in the choir!’
‘I love singing! We sing very nice hymns and songs and I love singing in church’.
‘Being in the choir is a special opportunity to have a great relationship with God. It also enables you to do lots of activities with your voice. I like being in the choir because Ashley is a great teacher and teaches us a variety of songs and I find it very fun. We also have lots of fund-raising events and communicating with other church choirs which improve our choir.’
‘It’s a bit of a cliché to say that being part of a choir is like being in a second family but it couldn’t be truer! I’ve grown up with half of St Giles choir and there is no denying that it hasn’t been lively. It is even more enjoyable when we sing new songs for concerts and people compliment us – at least we know that we sound good! Now we go regularly go to Morland Choir Camp and have new robes amongst other things -there’s never been a better time to be part of this family and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who can hold a note!‘