Clare College Cambridge

Joining the Choir

The Choir of Clare College admits new Choral Scholars in each voice part every year, making up a choir of typically 24-28 singers at one time.

Choral Scholars are expected to fully commit to the Choir's busy schedule of services in Chapel during full term, and the large number of external commitments throughout the year.


Choral Scholars receive a scholarship of £100 per year (the standard university wide amont). More substantially,  Choral Scholars  receive free weekly singing lessons with respected singing teachers, masterclasses, overseas tours and, on occassion, fees for performances and broadcasts.

The Choir performs in major concert venues throughout the United Kingdom and tours internationally every year.  In recent years, the Choir has toured to Japan, the USA, Israel and throughout Europe. The Choir has an ongoing relationship with Harmonia Mundi and records each year. In addition, the Choir regularly performs as part of the BBC Radio 3 Choral Evensong schedule.

After Clare

Many former members of the Choir now enjoy distinguished professional solo careers. Others sing in leading vocal ensembles such as the Monteverdi Choir, The Sixteen, Tenebrae, Polyphony, and the Tallis Scholars. Recent Organ Scholars have taken up positions at Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral.  Many former Organ and Choral Scholars have established international reputations including Sir Roger Norrington, Ivor Bolton, Richard Egarr, John Rutter, Stephen Farr, Dominic Wheeler, Elin Manahan Thomas and Nicholas Collon.


Auditions for the Choral Scholarships take place in September each year for admission to the choir the following academic year. Occassionally the choir will appoint choral volunteers closer to the start of the academic year to fill any remaining vacancies in the choir.

The audition process consists of singing a piece of the candidate's choice to Graham Ross, the Director of Music, with some sightreading and aural tests. Candidates are welcome to get in touch with Graham Ross at any point throughout the year to meet informally and sing to him before the Choral Trials in September.

Please click here for more information about choral and organ scholarships.