The Choirs of All Saints’ Maidstone
All Saints is one of about 30 churches in England which maintains a cathedral style choir of men and boy trebles. There have been choral services held in the church since its inception in 1395. Here at All Saints we pride ourselves in continuing this ancient tradition that is part of our nation’s cultural heritage.
We sing each Sunday morning with Evensong twice a month. Rehearsals are on Fridays at 7.30pm in the choir room.
· An outstanding, free musical education
· Exciting national singing events
· Pocket money for singing
· Great friendships – working as part of a team
· A unique experience; cathedral style singing while living at home!
Being a chorister at All Saints is a great opportunity, highly rewarding and lots of fun! Life as a chorister develops important social skills in children by including them as an integral part of a totally committed team working closely with colleagues. They gain self-confidence and a world-class musical education singing in one of the finest churches outside of London.
Boys and girls are welcome to join from the age of 7. All choristers start with a probationary year where they learn the routine and repertoire of the choir. Throughout their choristerships they are given a firm grounding in vocal technique, sight-reading and musicianship. Once they have become full choristers they take part in the full musical life of All Saints singing with their respective choirs.
We run monthly ‘Voice for Life’ coaching workshops which cover vocal technique and theory, working towards ABRSM Grade 5, using the Royal School of Church Music ‘Voice for Life’ course. All singers are welcome to attend.
Choristers are drawn from local schools and develop firm friendships through singing together, choir barbeques, concerts and other activities. Choristers also are paid some pocket money for attendance at rehearsals and services – this is not only a perk, it teaches a sense of responsibility for their own attendance, encourages them to be punctual, reliable and organised and means they are appropriately rewarded for their hard work.
Essential in this is the role of supportive parents and family. No previous musical training is necessary, any child can have the opportunity of free musical education and experiences which last a lifetime by being a chorister at All Saints.
Choral singers are always welcome to join the choirs of All Saints.
Uniquely in Kent, we run two parallel choirs; one which is men only, the other for female voices. The two sing together for major festivals, Civic Services and on other occasions.
Following the cathedral tradition, the Gentlemen’s voices sing four part music, from plainchant to the present day, singing each Sunday morning and Evensong twice each month. Occasional sung Compline services are also held. Many of our choir gentlemen are former choristers who have continued with us after their voices have changed.
The Ladies’ choir
The Ladies of All Saints choir was founded early in 2015 to run in parallel with the Gentlemen’s choir, to give the equal opportunities to take part in the worship at All Saints. The Ladies sing both on their own in three or four parts as well as with the Choir Gentlemen on occasion. We rehearse on Sundays at 11am in the choir room.
As well as singing for major festivals both choristers and choir members have the opportunity to sing in unique performances and other venues; these have included Canterbury and St Paul’s Cathedrals, and St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle as well as weddings and Jubilee celebrations.
To join the choir please contact the Director of Liturgical Music, Charlotte O’Neill at firstname.lastname@example.org
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