Ely Cathedral Octagon Singers
ELY CATHEDRAL OCTAGON SINGERS ("ECOS") was launched in September 2006, and is open to all singers aged 16 years upwards who would like to participate in a voluntary, unrobed choir in the Cathedral, singing on an occasional basis. It is not necessary to already sing in a church choir but would-be members must be in sympathy with the ethos and aims of the Cathedral and have proven choral experience. Formal singing qualifications (eg graded singing examinations etc) will not be required.
So far, over 60 singers have become members of ECOS and it is hoped that a pool of about 80 voices will eventually be recruited, with members signing up to undertake such services and rehearsals as they have time to commit to, hopefully not less than two occasions per academic term (the minimum is one session per term). In general these will be at weekends (often a Saturday) but there may well be some midweek, evening commitments too. ECOS will supplement the work of the existing full-time choirs in the Cathedral and undertake service duties in their absence or by invitation from other organisations. Services are announced by term, along with rehearsal details. ECOS is supported by the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral and the Bishop of Ely.
The Director of the ECOS is Jan Payne, a professional musician with a proven track record of choral direction. Jan is also the Bishop's Adviser for Music in the Diocese of Ely and a Licensed Lay Minister (Reader) at Ely Cathedral. Organist for ECOS is Paul Bryan, also a highly respected local musician as both player and composer, with many published works to his name.
Those wishing to be considered for membership will be invited for an informal, friendly audition with the Director and Organist. Applicants must be able to read music (although expert sight-reading skills are not necessary) and those wishing to sing alto, tenor or bass should be able to hold their part reliably. At present there is no membership fee but that might change in the future. ECOS members are required to abide by the Cathedral's Child Protection Policy and all those over 18 years of age accepted for membership will be required to hold an up-to-date CRB Enhanced Disclosure from the Diocese of Ely. (NB: This can be applied for at time of joining.)
To obtain further details about auditioning and membership, please contact the Director of ECOS, Jan Payne by email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.