Apprentice Conductor position

The Ripieno Choir are delighted to announce the Apprentice Conductor position for 2017/8 has been awarded to Mary Offer. Read her bio

The Ripieno Choir is proud to support an apprentice conductor position, which has been created to provide choral conducting experience and training to a young musician for whom this is an important area of interest. This novel initiative attracted coverage in the Making Music High Notes magazine. You can read the article here.

The apprentice conductor will receive conducting lessons, at no cost, with our experienced Musical Director, David Hansell, and will be given the opportunity to take part of at least half our rehearsals and conduct at least one part of the programme in one of the Ripieno Choir’s concerts.

The apprentice conductor position is designed for a sixth form music student who appreciates that conducting, like any other branch of musical performance, requires study and practice, and is prepared to commit to this. This is not a ‘quick fix’ to someone a month before they have a university music award audition, for example. The position is for at least a year, and it is expected that the apprentice conductor will begin his/her work with The Ripieno Choir at the start of school Years 12 or 13 (Lower or Upper 6th form).

The Ripieno Choir rehearses in Thames Ditton (two minutes’ walk from the station) on Sunday evenings (19.45-21.45) during term time. Please see elsewhere on this website for further information including forthcoming repertoire plans.

The Ripieno Choir continues to offer short-term membership (usually a year or two) to young singers, who might be preparing for university choral scholarship auditions. Such singers have typically sung with the choir in their sixth form or gap years and one has even returned to the Choir post-university!


Applications for the 2017/8 post are now closed.
If you are interested in applying for the position next year, please review our selection criteria and information on the application process below.

The ideal candidate for an apprentice conductor position will probably, but not necessarily:

  • be intending to read Music at university, perhaps as a Choral or Organ Scholar;
  • be a confident sight singer (even if singing is not their main ‘instrument’ – vocal quality is not the issue);
  • be studying Music to A-level;
  • have achieved at least a merit at Grade 8 in their principal instrument;
  • be willing to sing in and (for a fluent keyboard player) occasionally accompany the choir. (Most of our rehearsals are actually unaccompanied, whatever the repertoire).

If you would like to be considered for this post please send a CV to State your name, address, phone and e-mail contact details; your age and school year; your school; your musical qualifications (including any that you are currently preparing for e.g. A levels, diplomas); and your musical interests, activities and ambitions.

Candidates selected for interview will be offered free tickets to our next concert. At the interview, candidates will be asked to expand on any points of interest arising from their CVs, demonstrate basic beating patterns (2, 3 and 4 in a bar), demonstrate their sight singing skills and respond to aural tests. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions. The interview will be with a small group of choir members.

Candidates are welcome to observe a rehearsal either before or after submitting their application and this should be arranged via