Music has always been important at St Mary's, which pioneered the liturgical performance of 16th and 17th century choral music in the mid 20th century.
The church has a Director of Music, Choral Scholars, Girl Choristers and a Church Choir. St Mary's is affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music.
Regular choral services are offered, including Sung Eucharist, with a Latin Mass or English Communion setting and communion motet sung by the Choral Scholars on the 1st Sunday of each month. Special choral services sung by the scholars, sometimes with the girl choristers, include the candlelit Advent and Christmas Carol Services, Midnight Mass, Maundy Thursday Sung Eucharist, Good Friday Devotion, Easter Sunday Sung Eucharist, and an evening Ascension Day Services.
Choral Evensongs are sung several times a year, and solo anthems are offered at some services of Evensong.
The scholars and choristers also sing at wedding services.
Please see the list of forthcoming choral services on our website.
If you are an enthusiastic singer aged 10-18, come and sing with our choristers.
They rehearse at 7.50-8.30am on Wednesdays and Thursdays at Hinchley Wood School. They sing at the 3rd Sunday Family Services, and also alongside the professional choral scholars for major services and choral evensongs. Choristers are presented with Royal School of Church Music medals and ribbons, and have the opportunity to be admitted as Head Chorister. They also get to read lessons in Carol Services.
It was the focus on early choral music that inspired the commissioning of the superb organ installed in the church by Frobenius, Organ builders of Lyngby, Denmark, in 1975.
This outstanding instrument was voiced in the church by Erik Frobenius, and is widely praised for its light, responsive touch and the delightful sweetness and clarity of its sound. It is a smaller cousin of the renowned organ of Queen's College, Oxford, installed by Frobenius a decade earlier.
The organ is a joy to play and has attracted a number of eminent organists to play, give recitals and make recordings on St Mary's organ, including James O'Donnell, James Dalton, Simon Preston, Dame Gillian Weir, Susi Jeans and Ian leGrice. A CD recording of the organ was recently recorded by Emma Gibbins, a previous Director of Music of St Mary's, and is available for sale at the church.
The specification can be found on the National Pipe Organ here
With grateful thanks to the Ouseley Church Music Trust www.ouseleytrust.org.uk for their support.