Young singers’ bursary scheme

“Being a part of Petros Singers affords young singers the opportunity to experience choral singing at the highest, non-professional level. The repertoire is broad, the concerts electric. Expert vocal tuition is provided by the Musical Director – himself a well-known singer and sought-after teacher. Singing lessons are also available from a visiting teacher, an internationally renowned tenor. Outstanding professional musicians regularly perform alongside Petros Singers, inspiring and informing the choir. Time spent with Petros Singers will allow you to form the foundation of a wonderful life in choral music. JOIN TODAY!”

Miriam Allan – Soprano soloist, Brahms Requiem, March 2019; workshop leader, March 2016

Because of the Covid-19 crisis we have had to suspend applications to join the choir. In the meantime, if you would like to register your interest in joining the bursary scheme when that becomes an option, please get in touch so that we can let you know when vacancies are once again available. Thank you.

As a registered charity, part of our charitable commitment is to reach into the local community and offer gifted young singers the opportunity to sing with us on a full bursary (which covers the annual subscription fee). These places are open to singers aged between 16 and 27 years old and we welcome all voice parts (where needed within the choir).

As well as benefitting from being part of a warm, welcoming and friendly group, you would experience real opportunities to learn from some of the country’s leading and most-respected singing teachers. Our ambitious, wide-ranging concert programmes would expose you to large-scale, well-known works alongside forgotten masterpieces and rare choral treasures. We run the full gamut from Tallis and Praetorius, through Handel and Brahms, to Dove and Whitacre – with a smattering of Lennon/McCartney and a few Anons in between!

A further benefit of joining Petros Singers is access to individual singing lessons with Miriam Allan, a renowned soprano and experienced teacher. The bursary scheme funds one free lesson per term for bursary members. You would also be invited to attend our biennial singing workshops free of charge – inspirational events led by pre-eminent vocal musicians.

We are fortunate to perform alongside world-class musicians and soloists and constantly strive to be and work with the best. Please explore our concert archive to see performers from past concerts, along with the extent of our repertoire. Some of our concerts provide opportunities for solos from within the choir and you would be actively encouraged to audition for these.

While the majority of our concerts take place in West London, we also perform in highly prestigious venues in Central London such as St James’s Piccadilly, The Grosvenor Chapel, Holy Trinity Sloane Square and St John’s Smith Square. We also recently took part in the weekend services at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.

Choir membership is by audition. These generally take place in the first two weeks of each term, although other times would be considered. Your audition would take place at the end of either your first or second rehearsal, giving you the chance to meet and sing with the choir.

If you wish to proceed, you would then sing privately to Richard Bannan, our Musical Director. The process is relaxed and friendly. Richard is as interested in finding out what you may be able to do in the future as hearing what you can do now. Ideally bring a short piece you know well (either a solo or a choral extract is fine); you will then be taken through a few exercises to assess your vocal range, sight-reading and ear.

We rehearse on Tuesday evenings during term time at St Peter’s Church, Black Lion Lane on the borders of Hammersmith and Chiswick. Singers are expected to attend all rehearsals and take part in the concert at the end of each term. Please see our FAQs for more information about what’s involved in being a choir member.

We’re delighted to currently have two bursary members in the choir. They describe below how they’ve found the experience of singing with Petros Singers so far:

I’ve been singing in choirs for as long as I remember so, on moving to London from Ireland in the summer, knew I wanted to find a choir as a social outlet and so I could experience music in an alternative way to my daily job. One of the reasons I joined Petros Singers was because of its bursary scheme which gives young singers the opportunity to join a hard-working chamber choir. Everyone’s been so welcoming and it’s a pleasure to spend Tuesday evenings working with the choir.

Muireann Ní Mhathúna, music teacher, September 2019

I sang in chapel choirs all the way through school but, at university, ended up playing too much sport to add singing into the mix. When I moved back to London, I wanted to do something creative alongside my law studies and, as a beneficiary of the Petros Singers’ bursary, I’m quickly slipping back into the swing of singing. I’m learning so much from Richard’s extensive knowledge and talented directorship, and it’s wonderful to be part of a group that shares my enthusiasm for choral music.

India Mackay, Law student, April 2020

For further information about applying for a bursary place, please email membership@petrossingers.org. We look forward to hearing from you.