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Apprentice Conductor position

Applications for the third iteration of this innovate scheme are now open.

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.

What is the Apprentice Conductor position?

The apprentice conductor will receive conducting lessons, at no cost, with our experienced Musical Director (Huw Morgan, an alumnus of the Royal Academy of Music’s postgraduate Choral Conducting course). They 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. Please see elsewhere on this website for further information including forthcoming repertoire plans.

Who is it for?

The 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 for at least a year. This is not a ‘quick fix’ to someone a month before they have a university music award audition, for example.

The apprentice conductor will currently be in school Year 11 or 12 and will begin their work with the Choir at the start of school years 12 or 13 (Lower or Upper Sixth form). The ideal candidate will probably, but not necessarily:

  • be studying, or intending to study, Music to A-level;
  • 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);
  • 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).
What is the commitment?

The Ripieno Choir rehearses in Thames Ditton (two minutes’ walk from the station) on Sunday evenings (19.45-21.45) during term time. Tuition for the apprentice conductor will normally take place beforehand.

Application Process

Applications for the 2019/20 post are now open.
If you are interested in applying for the position, please send a CV to vox@ripienochoir.org.uk. Include 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.

Closing date 15th March 2019

Auditions will take place in April when 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 vox@ripienochoir.org.uk. If you have any questions about the scheme or the application process, please do not hesitate to call us on 020 8399 2714 (daytime and evening)

In addition, the Ripieno Choir has a history of offering short-term membership (usually a year or two) to young singers who might be preparing for university choral scholarship auditions. Such singers have typically rehearsed and performed with the Choir in their sixth form or gap years.

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