For 2022-23 we are delighted to continue our partnership with Newcastle University (Music Department) in the City of Newcastle upon Tyne. The Choral Scholars will sing at services, concerts and events at both Newcastle University and St Andrews Church. The main focus of the scholarship will be regular services on Sunday mornings (during term time) and occasionally on selected 'High Days & Holy Days' by agreement.
Apart from being an Inclusive Church, we are a well-preserved 'Grade1 listed' building with a long (900 year) history as 'the oldest church in the heart of the city' situated within just 5 mins walk of the University, and enjoying good bus, metro/railway links.
There is a modest musical pedigree- Charles Avison (1709-1770) was once organist here, with his grave situated immediately outside the South doors. The inside of the church has excellent acoustics with good eyelines and seating capacity, offering an ideal worship/performance/ rehearsal space for all forms of secular and sacred music. It is this combination of historical gravitas, variety and flexibility (with the added bonus of consistently reliable heating!) that is appreciated by musicians and parishoners visitors alike.
Our main service is the traditional 'Book of Common Prayer' (BCP) as devised by Thomas Cranmer (1662) although we are liturgically 'nimble' and embrace other styles where pastorally appropriate.
Choral Scholars receive a basic remuneration at the end of each month which amounts to £1,500 per annum. In addition, we will pay for 'Holy Week' services. This will be calculated on an individual basis and added to your remuneration.
Choral Scholars are allowed to be absent from services (or standalone rehearsals or other events) provided this is arranged in advance with the Conductor, in order that a suitable deputy can be sourced, thereby minimising disruption and guaranteeing musical continuity of output. Therefore, if it becomes necessary to arrange any absences, these must be agreed as far ahead as possible. Suitable deputies will be organised by the Conductor and will be paid £30 per service. This amount will be deducted from the Choral Scholarship remuneration at the end of each month for any absences other that for legitimate illness.
Any additional services (not included in the schedule) will receive remuneration.
Choral Scholarships will be tenable for one year only, renewable by agreement with the Conductor and Vicar.
N.B. Throughout the scholarship period, you will be a scholar at St Andrew's and not an employee. Nothing in this document is intended to create a relationship of employer and employee between you and St Andrew's.
Eligibility and requirements
Candidates for Choral Scholarships should have a confident singing voice and good standard of sight-singing ability. Enthusiasm for singing as a member of a team, together with a willingness to develop their musical talent, will be determing factors in the appointment of Choral Scholars.
Applications are welcome from all singers at the beginning of their choral music careers; our Choral Scholarships are particularly aimed at bridging the gap between university and professional-level choral experience. Although the music department (and alumni) is our primary recruiting pool, we are also open to students studying other subjects, provided that are suitably gifted and meet the required standards.
Friday 16th September to Sunday 18th December 2022 (inclusive)
Friday 6th January to Sunday 26th March 2023 (inclusive)
Holy Week: Palm Sunday (2nd April) to Easter Day (9th April)
Friday 28th April to Sunday 18th June 2023 (inclusive)
The regular focus of the scholarship is our Sunday mornings for the traditionall (BCP) 11am Sung Holy Communion during term time. This will require a Friday evening rehearsal (1730-1900) and a 10am rehearsal on the Sunday morning. Each Thursday, during Advent and Lent will be devotional 'Compline' (1730-1830). Every 5th Sunday (January, May, July October ) will be Sung Mattins followed by a shorter form of Holy Communion.
Through the pandemic, we have been moving to a streamlined model of in-person and recorded worship. Selected services will also be either recorded for future use on our social media or for those sick at home or in hospital.
There are also occasional events outside the normal schedule - special services - for which Choral Scholars will be required.
This will include Candlemas; Ash Wednesday; Ascension Day; All Souls Day; our Patronal Festival, St Andrew's Day (30th November) which is a high-profile significant event in the life of St Andrew's: and our Community Carol Service in December.
Scholars will be notified of these additional dates in writing before the start of each scholarship term.
In addition, we are currently building a programme of Choral Scholarship activity in collaboration with the University (which includes an expectation for scholars to partake in the New Vocal Ensemble) and working alongside other churches in the city, ideally filling beautiful and unique sacred spaces with the glory and mystery of music for city workers, residents and visitors to Newcastle. Choral Scholars will be invited to take part in this programme (for which additional renumeration will be offered) as we continue to emerge from pandemic.
Please complete the application form and send by email to Tim Cranfield, c/o Michelle Small (office manager) at: by 1600 on Friday 31st august 2022 at the latest.
Auditions will take place in early September.
Finally, being musically creative, liturgically coherent, and theologically sound are all key aspects of allowing people to 'worship' (giving God his 'worth') with integrity. Although scholars do not need to be practising Christians, they must be sensitive to the fact that our building has been set aside for a very special purpose. We ask that you are conscientious and offer your musical gifts with humility.
Now more than ever, our city needs a variety of quality music for healing and hope. It is a privilege to be part of that exciting journey, and I trust you will take great comfort in playing your part.
Revd. Mike Hills.
(Vicar and City Centre Chaplain)