Mask SVG

Music Scholars

The St James’s Music Scholarship programme welcomed its first scholars in October 2022. There are currently six Singing Scholars and two Instrumental Scholars. The initiative is an embodiment of St James’s mission to be a creative and open-hearted church.

St James’s has a long tradition of music, both religious and secular, and the support of benefactors has made our scholarship programme possible. We are delighted to offer musicians at an early stage in their careers an opportunity to train and perform together in the marvellous acoustic of the church while in receipt of scholarships worth £2,500 (singing) and £1,250 (instrumental) for the academic year.

The Instrumental Scholars play in church once or twice a month to enhance the music at our Sunday morning services. The Singing Scholars sing every week on Sunday morning and sing at all the church festivals and at a monthly Choral Evensong on Sunday afternoon. They also take it in turns to act as Cantor on Sunday mornings and to be the solo singer for our contemplative Tuesday evening Sanctuary services.

We aim for our scholars to reflect a wide range of musical backgrounds and encourage them to present two or three concerts a year in the church. We encourage scholars to take the opportunity to give a recital as part of our lunchtime series, and Singing Scholars are invited to sing at special events organised by our Development Team.
It is important to St James’s that we are representative of people and communities across society. We actively welcome applications from people who are currently underrepresented in our community, including people with global majority heritage, people with lived experience of poverty and people who identify as LGBTQ+.

Music Scholars Concert: An Easter Sequence

Featuring the Singing and Instrumental Scholars of St James’s Church and directed by Michael Haslam.

The programme included music by Kenneth Leighton, Vaughan Williams, Moses Hogan, Marianne Kim, Sarah Macdonald and Dai Fujikura.

The proceeds from this concert went towards the Singing Scholars’ summer tour of Yorkshire 2024, which will bring choral liturgy and St James’s values of inclusion to Ripon, Selby and Fountains Abbey.