About us

We are a thriving 100-strong mixed voice choir, based in the Hertfordshire market town of Berkhamsted. St Peter’s parish church on the High Street is our venue for local concerts – but please don’t get the idea that we are ‘small town’ in outlook. For major choral works, accompanied by a symphony orchestra, we join up with other choirs with whom we share the same Music Director – Chorleywood Choral Society and the Gaudeamus Singers – to form the English Philharmonia Chorus. In recent years we have performed in such venues as The Royal Festival Hall, Bath Abbey, York Minster, St Albans Abbey and the Watford Colosseum. We were last at the Colosseum in spring 2014, performing Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana, along with a new jazz piece, The Seasons by Sebastian Weiss, commissioned by the choirs especially for the occasion.

Our usual schedule is to perform three main concerts a year, in May, September and December.  We also present concerts on tour every summer, generally in mainland Europe, and have sung in Catalonia, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Flanders. In summer 2011 we remained in England, travelling to Yorkshire, where we were thrilled to perform in Ripon Cathedral, Beverley Minster and York Minster. Summer 2012 saw us in northern Italy, singing in Verona and in St Mark’s, Venice. Our most recent foreign trip took us to France in August 2013, where we performed at venues in Lisieux, Bayeux and Arromanches. In summer 2014 we are staying in England once again, and are proud to be singing in the cathedrals of Chichester, Salisbury and Winchester.

We rehearse under the guidance of full-time professional musicians – Graham Wili and Fei Ren.

Under Graham’s directorship the choir continues to expand its wide-ranging chorale repertoire – from the Renaissance to the 21st century, both a capella and symphonic. We are a commissioning choir, and are proud to have given first performances to no fewer than four pieces of contemporary music. A fifth, Songs of the Coromandel Coast by Chris Williams, was premiered at the Royal Festival Hall on 12 May 2008.  The performance was commercially recorded – another first for the choir.

 

Rehearsals take place on a Tuesday evening. There are no auditions, and new singers can be certain of a warm and friendly welcome. See Join for more information.

 

We also have an extensive range of sheet music available for hire.
See our catalogue ».

 

Berkhamsted Choral Society is a member of Berkhamsted Arts Trust which is supported financially by Dacorum Borough Council, and is affiliated to Making Music, which represents amateur performing and promoting societies.

Berkhamsted Choral Society Registered Charity Number: 274462

A thriving, 100-strong mixed voice choir. Friendly, welcoming, non-auditioned but high achieving.