Emmanuel has a choir of around 25 people, which sings at services each Thursday & Sunday in Term. College occasions are marked with special services throughout the year.

Our Choir is notable for its varied & interesting choral repertoire and high musical standards. We also regularly hold exciting programmes of events, and our community is known for their warmth & openness. The weekly schedule is relatively light, with three rehearsals per week during Term. The Emmanuel Choir is an ideal option for people who want to pursue other activities alongside work & choral singing.

Outside Term, the Choir often tour the UK & around the world. Recent tours have been to the USA, Belfast, Mexico, Sweden & Thailand.

Recent performances include:

  • Elgar’s Kingdom in King’s College Chapel with other Cambridge choirs
  • Mahler’s Second Symphony in Ely Cathedral.
  • Bach's St John Passion and Mozart's Requiem in College & across the UK
  • Beethoven's Ninth Symphony with the Academy of Ancient Music, at the Barbican
  • Britten's War Requiem at the Albert Hall, with the Proms Youth Choir

Benefits of joining the Choir:

  • Free singing lessons
  • International tours
  • Trips to sing in venues in the UK
  • Choral Scholarships and Exhibitions
  • Free formal dinners after services

Typical weekly schedule:

  • Tuesday — 1715–1845: Rehearsal
  • Thursday — 1645–1845: Rehearsal & Eucharist
  • Sunday — 1630–1900: Rehearsal & Evensong

Our Choir, like many Cambridge college choirs, contains Choral Scholars who are elected before arrival at Cambridge. There are also Choral Exhibitioners and Volunteers, who join when already students at Cambridge. These include both under– & postgraduates, from Emmanuel and from other colleges.

Joining the Choir as a Choral Scholar

The College Choral Awards are only made to undergraduate students who already hold an academic offer to Cambridge. Emmanuel is part of the intercollegiate scheme, through which most Choral Awards in Cambridge are made. The University's Choral Open Day is held in April each year.

  • The next auditions for the Choral Awards will be held in March 2024.
  • These are for entry in October 2024 (or, for offer holders with deferred places, October 2025).
  • Once you hold an offer of an academic place at Emmanuel, we will contact you with application deadline dates.

Joining the Choir as a Choral Exhibitioner or Volunteer

Many people also join the choir on arrival in Cambridge, or during their time here. Most of its members are undergraduates, but postgraduates, postdocs & others are all welcome. Emmanuel students are awarded Choral Exhibitions (& receive a small financial award), while other members join the choir as Choral Volunteers. Vacancies are advertised in the first week of the Michaelmas Term. Other voice parts are also sometimes available during the year.