Boy Choristers

The boy choristers of the Cathedral Choir are all educated at Lanesborough School, the choir school for Guildford Cathedral. They rehearse at school four mornings a week before school; and the full choir of boys and men sings at Evensong in the Cathedral on Tuesdays and Thursdays; there are currently three choral services on Sundays which are shared between the boys and men and the girls and men. There are also duties at Easter and Christmas. Boys begin as ‘probationer choristers’ in year 3 and build up choir duties throughout the year so that initially they come to weekday morning rehearsals and one Sunday service at the Cathedral.

Vacancies exist each year for musical boys who are interested in becoming choristers; the Chapter of the Cathedral awards educational bursaries to boys selected for the choir. It is sometimes possible to secure additional funding for boys whose family circumstances prevent their parents from contributing to the cost of school fees. Full details can be found in the prospective boy chorister booklet (PDF).

Most boys are auditioned when they are in the Michaelmas term of year 2, with a view to starting as a probationer chorister when they enter year 3 the following September. If offered a place in the choir they are expected to stay until their voice changes or until they reach the end of year 8. Auditions are offered to boys already in Lanesborough Pre-Prep or boys who have accepted an offer to start at Lanesborough in year 3. See the Lanesborough website for school admission details.

Having a son who is a chorister is a commitment for the whole family, but there are great rewards. Many choristers go on to pursue careers in music, and all benefit from the experience of teamwork and sense of achievement the choir gives them; in particular, ex-choristers often go on to achieve music scholarships and other awards at leading senior schools and choral scholarships at University.