Continuing to innovate

Bach Cantata

We aim to reach our target of £500,000 in order to keep the Choir at the forefront of developments in choral music through new commissions and other innovations.

Sample projects

Bach Cantata Evensongs

A gift of £30,000 would fund one Cantata Evensong per term for five years, featuring players from the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, one of the finest period instrument ensembles in the world.

New music

The Choir regularly commissions music from leading composers, and one-off gifts of between £3,000 and £5,000 would fund new commissions of choral music.

A donor’s story - Philip Oakes

Philip Oakes (BA 1983) gave £100,000 in 2008 to establish the Oakes Fund, which supports commissions of new music for the Choir:

"Only later in life did I fully appreciate how privileged I was to study at St John’s. Having been fortunate enough to have had my time there paid for by others, the College setting me up for my subsequent career, I felt it only right I should give something back. Listening to such a beautiful sound in our Chapel, in the knowledge I’ve somehow contributed, is such an emotional experience. I now attend Choir events not just delighting in the music, but also greatly appreciating the warmth with which I’m received on every occasion. St John’s Choir is special not only for its excellence, but also for the friendliness of those who bring about such excellence. I can’t recommend donating to the Choir strongly enough, and I urge you to join me."

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Latest webcast

Recorded on
17 November 2017

​This week's webcast features Pelham Humfrey's Evening Service in E Minor. Humfrey died at the age of 27, but exerted a strong influence on his peers even at his young age.

Latest news

Joanna Ward

On Thursday 26 October, the Choir performed the first commission of the term: 'The Banquet' by undergraduate Joanna Ward. The piece featured men's voices and a double bass, played by Joe Cowie, and it was funded with generous support from Paul & Joanna Lindsell and Jeremy & Jodie Podger.

Choral singing comes no better

Fiona Maddocks, The Observer