2019 Choral Courses Celebrate 40 Years!

The Choral Courses for young singers aged 8-21 start their 40th year of wonderful music-making in April.  This is the first year all the Courses have been run by the Rodolfus Foundation, uniting the Junior Choral Courses, Choral Courses and Rodolfus Choir under one umbrella.

Over the last four decades a staggering 10,000 boys and girls have benefitted from one of these brilliant courses.  During the next few months, hundreds more children and young adults will attend one of ten courses in the UK or one of the Chinese Courses staged in Shanghai and Shenzhen. The latter follow the UK format and there are plans to launch in more countries.

‘The Choral Courses change lives, open doors, reveal new horizons. Over the years they have become a pillar of our cultural life in Britain, with the wonder of music setting an example to us all’.

John Rutter

They were founded by Ralph Allwood in 1980 at Uppingham School, before becoming firmly established as the ‘Eton Choral Courses’ when he moved there. Ralph has now been joined by a superb team of Course Directors and a highly experienced team of pastoral and musical staff.

This year’s packed programme starts with a Junior Choral Course for singers aged 8-15 in Cheltenham from 7-13 April.  Courses for this age group were founded by Martyn Ford, Ralph, and Ian Hopkins in 2012 and are staffed by singers who form the lower parts, or support the young tenors and basses.

Ralph says: ‘One of the most attractive things about choral singing is that the highly experienced can learn alongside the less experienced. For this reason there are no auditions: all we ask is enthusiasm. There are bursaries for those who might not be able to afford it. Lives are changed, and firm, long term friendships are made.’

He adds: ‘I have lost count of the number of times somebody has said to me, “if only I had known about your courses when I was a teenager”. I so want to identify each and every young person who enjoys singing and urge them to come on a course, junior or senior.’

Click here to read about all the special events, visitors and masterclasses planned for the 2019 Courses, and how to apply for a place!


Find out what former participants have to say!

Choral Course Testimonials