Ampleforth College joins the Choir Schools Association

The Schola Cantorum of Ampleforth College is delighted to have become one of the newest members of the CSA. Not only the most recent, but at only 55 years old, perhaps one of the youngest members also. 

The Schola was founded in 1970 at the request of Cardinal Basil Hume, then Abbot of Ampleforth Abbey. His aim was to help preserve the singing of music written for the Roman Catholic Church along with the best examples from other traditions. This still remains at the heart of Schola’s mission. Boys from Ampleforth College would provide music for a variety of liturgies both within, and in addition to, the monastic hours sung by the monks in the Abbey Church. When the College became fully co-educational in the early 2000s, a girls’ choir was founded, the Schola Puellarum, and further enhanced this choral offering. The senior boys and girls combined in 2018 and continue to sing for two public offices each week and various concerts and meditations throughout the academic year. The choir also champions new music and its most recent commissions have included works by Philip Moore, David Briggs and Kerry Andrew. Over its 50-year history, the Schola has made multiple recordings and many of its members have gone on to choral scholarships at prestigious universities and to professional careers in music. 

Members of the Schola Cantorum take part in all aspects of College life, centred around our ethos of Benedictine Scholarship (of which the choir is a microcosm): 

  • A life-long love of learning 
  • Reflective and resilient 
  • Intellectually curious 
  • Striving to do my best 
  • Discerning and critically engaging with the world around me 

“Music is the lifeblood of the College for all of our students, not just those in the Choir. It flows through all aspects of our community, from singing at Assembly and Mass, playing an instrument, taking part in one of our many types of Concerts, or joining us for one of our meditations. How fortunate we are to have so many talented student musicians and such wonderful staff who nurture and develop that talent. Bravo to our marvellous Director of Music, Edward Seymour.” 

Peter Roberts, The Head