The University of York Choir was formed over 50 years ago and welcomes members from both outside and inside the University. The choir aims to make a major contribution to cultural life in York and to work with soloists and orchestras of national and international reputation, such as the Royal Northern Sinfonia and Yorkshire Baroque Soloists, as well as the University Symphony Orchestra.

Concert programmes feature a wide variety of pieces, from the late Baroque to the twentieth century, and focus on large-scale repertoire usually performed with orchestra. In recent years the choir has performed works such as Verdi’s Requiem; Bach’s St Matthew Passion; Handel’s Israel in Egypt; Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast; Orff’s Carmina Burana; Rachmaninov’s Vespers; Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Britten’s War Requiem.

In normal times, rehearsals are held on Monday evenings during University term time in the Sir Jack Lyons Concert Hall in the Department of Music, and the choir usually gives three concerts in each academic year, either in York Minster or the University’s Central Hall. For the 2020/21 academic year, the coronavirus pandemic requires completely new, highly flexible, arrangements. The choir committee has developed exciting plans to maintain the familiar University Choir experience, starting in the Autumn Term with weekly live online rehearsals on Monday evenings.

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