The Choir of St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, has been in existence since the year 1348, and, with the exception of the Commonwealth period (1649-60), has sung services in the Chapel continuously since then. The choir is made up of choristers, some of whom are probationers (or training choristers), and twelve Lay Clerks, who provide the adult voices of alto, tenor and bass. In term time the Choir sings three services on Sundays, and one service every weekday except Wednesday; in this way it is able to draw upon a large repertoire of music from all ages and traditions. Members of the public are welcome to hear the Choir at these regular services.
The Choir is seen here in the Nave of St George’s Chapel singing ‘Carol of the Bells’ by Mykola Leontovich (1877-1921).
The Choristers, aged between 8 and 13, attend St George’s School. Rehearsing each morning, they also come up to the Castle after lessons to rehearse and sing the service with the Lay Clerks. The Lay Clerks are selected by audition, and are professionally trained singers in their own right. Further information about St George’s Chapel Choir can be found here.
The Choir sings regularly in the presence of Her Majesty The Queen and other members of the Royal Family. In 2018, the choir had the privilege of singing at the Royal Maundy Service and at both Royal Weddings in St George’s Chapel: for TRH The Duke and Duchess of Sussex in May, and for HRH Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank in October. Beyond its liturgical duties the choir broadcasts, tours, performs concerts and records (the next album being one of Christmas music due out in the autumn of 2019 on the Hyperion label) to bring the sound of St George’s to wider audiences. The Choir has toured to a number of countries including the USA, Austria, Germany and The Netherlands.
Drone footage by Thomas Rainbow; filmed and produced by Martin Stanford. Audio ℗ Hyperion Records Ltd, London. Video © The Dean & Canons of Windsor.