The Parish Choir of All Saints Church, Fulham, sings for the Eucharist and Choral Evensong services at the church and is regarded as one of the best choirs of its type in the country. At these services it performs a wide range of music, both well-known cathedral-style repertoire and more unusual music – from striking South American baroque works to South African choral dances and new commissions by contemporary composers, including, recently, a new Mass setting by Gabriel Jackson and an anthem by Richard Allain.
The choir is directed by Jonathan Wikeley, supported by Assistant Organist Matthew Burgess and the organ scholar. The choir is a hugely valued part of worship at All Saints and the congregation is extremely welcoming and appreciative of the rich and diverse music we provide. The clergy work closely with the music department and are extremely supportive of the choral tradition.
The choir is an auditioned amateur ensemble of chamber-choir proportions (currently 9, 7, 5, 6) that performs an exciting and eclectic range of music to a very high standard. Many members of the choir are young professionals who have enjoyed singing in college and university choirs and who wish to keep singing to a similar standard while working or studying in London. There are four paid choral scholars, one per part, who sing with the choir and also as a quartet
at certain services. At Christmas, Easter and other significant festivals the choir and organ are joined by a consort of professional instrumentalists.
Beyond the regular service schedule, the choir tours regularly to cathedrals in the UK (in recent years Norwich, Truro, St David’s, Canterbury, Winchester, Durham, Ely and Exeter) and abroad (Cologne, Bonn, northern France and southern Ireland). Other highlights include a termly ‘Three Choirs Evensong’ series, a rotating fixture between All Saints; St Luke’s, Chelsea; and St Martin-in-the-Fields. In January 2016 the three choirs sang their first concert – of Spem in alium and other large-scale choral works – at St Martin-in-the-Fields. In 2017 the three choirs performed J.S. Bach’s St John Passion at All Saints with orchestra, and choral scholars singing the solo arias. All Saints Choir organises regular workshops, most recently with David Hill (BBC Singers, Bach Choir) and Stephen Jackson. It has performed at the London Brandenburg Festival, with a concert of Passiontide music at Temple Church, and a concert at St Martin-in-the-Fields.
The choir is in increasing demand for broadcasts, singing live on BBC One for the Christmas Day Eucharist in 2017, and live on Radio 4 for the Palm ‘ Worship’ programme in 2018.
The choir is a friendly and sociable group and we have a busy social schedule of pub-going, parties and other events. Highlights of the year include the Vicar’s garden party, choir trips away to sing and relax, and the annual watching of the Boat Race start from the church tower.
The director of music is keen to use the choir members’ skills in many ways, and there may be opportunities for them to enhance or develop skills in choral and instrumental arrangement or composition as part of the position, should they wish to. We support an active programme of encouraging young composers and, depending on schedule and suitability, have performed several compositions by members of the choir in recent years. Also, there are occasionally opportunities to use choir members’ instrumental skills in some services.
The choir is made up of mainly auditioned amateur singers; entry is by audition with the director of music. In addition four choral scholarships and an organ scholarship are available each year - these are advertised around Easter each year..