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BBC Proms Youth Choir and Academy

As part of its commitment to nurturing new talent, the BBC founded the BBC Proms Youth Choir in 2012. This multi-year project was designed to bring together the best young singers from across the UK and create a massed youth choir with opportunities to perform at the highest level with professional symphony orchestras at the BBC. The BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy, piloted in 2017 in London, is a scheme that aims to discover new voices from all musical backgrounds and develop them in a choral setting.

The 2019 BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy, in partnership with Brighter Sound, is open for applications from singers aged 16-25 and based in Greater Manchester, until 10am, 27 March 2019.

BBC Proms Youth Choir and Academy FAQs

What is the BBC Proms Youth Choir?

The BBC Proms recruits up to 350 young singers from various choirs and music hubs from every corner of the UK, who rehearse in their local areas with their own leaders across the year. As the performance approaches, the BBC holds a four-day intensive rehearsal residency led by chorus master Simon Halsey. The residency is an opportunity for participants to immerse themselves in singing, meet other young singers from across the UK whilst developing their vocal skills to new levels. During the residency, rehearsals focus on the chosen concert repertoire and the week culminates in a Proms performance at the Royal Albert Hall. Highlights include Simon Rattle conducting Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius, Marin Alsop conducting Verdi’s Requiem and Edward Gardner conducting John Adams's Harmonium. More details about the 2019 performance will be announced on 17 April.

Which choirs will make up the Proms Youth Choir in 2019?

Different youth and university choirs come together each year to form the Proms Youth Choir. 2019 choirs will be announced on 17 April.

How does my choir take part in the Proms Youth Choir?

We’re always looking for new and exciting choirs who are keen to be part of the Proms Youth Choir. The best way to find out whether your choir would be eligible for consideration is to contact the team at getinvolved@bbc.co.uk.

What is the BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy?

The BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy aims to find undiscovered voices from all musical backgrounds and develop them in a choral setting. The Academy offers young singers the chance to develop their voice, explore classical choral singing and work alongside professional classical singers.

In 2017, the BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy took place in London, with singers rehearsing regularly in the lead up to their performance at the First Night of the Proms. In 2018, the Academy was run in partnership with Sage Gateshead and North East Music Education Hubs, working with over 50 young singers aged 16 to 25 from the North East of England.

In 2019 the Proms are working in partnership with Brighter Sound and we’re looking for young people from Greater Manchester with a love of singing to join the BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy and perform at this year’s BBC Proms.

Please note that the 2019 Proms Youth Choir Academy alto section is fully subscribed.

However, we are still inviting applications from enthusiastic sopranos, tenors and basses. If this sounds like you, we'd love to hear from you!

As part of the Academy you’ll take part in regular rehearsals led by conductor Grace Rossiter and members of the BBC Singers (the BBC’s full-time professional choir). In a supportive and friendly environment you’ll start from the basics of classical choral singing and work together to in preparation for the Proms Youth Choir performance at the Proms. Singers will be taught the music to best suit them (by ear and using scores), and we will provide audio tools for you to practice your part at home. You don’t need to be able to read music to be part of the Academy, but you should have a love of singing and a voice with potential.

Rehearsals will take place between April and July at MediaCityUK in Salford and Hallé at St Michael's in Manchester. The Academy group will then join other choirs at the Proms Youth Choir residency and perform together at the Proms.

It is free of charge to take part in the BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy.

How can I join the Proms Youth Choir Academy?

This opportunity is for 16-25 year olds from Greater Manchester.

To take part you should have:

  • A love of singing
  • A voice with potential
  • Enthusiasm and willingness to learn and develop in a choral setting, as part of a team
  • Commitment to the rehearsal schedule, and to looking at and listening to the piece at home in between rehearsals
  • Or perhaps you are a good musician, composer or play another instrument, and you’ve not yet explored your voice!

We especially encourage you to apply if you have little or no experience of singing in a group. You might not have sung in a choir before or not for some time, or perhaps you enjoy singing in a group that doesn’t require you to read music.

Please note that the 2019 Proms Youth Choir Academy alto section is fully subscribed.

However, we are still inviting applications from enthusiastic sopranos, tenors and basses. If this sounds like you, we'd love to hear from you!

Please visit www.brightersound.com/bbc-proms-youth-choir-academy/ to download more information and an application form. Please complete and send to bbc.proms@brightersound.com with ‘BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy’ in the subject by 10am on Friday 26 April.

Applications are open to 16-25 year olds. If applicants are 15 but turn 16 by 30 June 2019 they are eligible to apply.

Selected applicants will be invited to audition on 27 April at MediaCityUK in Salford.

I work with young musicians. How can I become a Proms Youth Choir Academy recruiting partner?

We are always looking for new partner organisations who work with potential Academy members. The best way to make sure your organisation is part of our recruitment process is to get in touch with the team at getinvolved@bbc.co.uk.

How old do I need to be to join the Proms Youth Choir and Academy?

Applications are open to 16-25 year olds. If applicants are 15 but turn 16 by 30 June 2019 they are eligible to apply.

Please note that the 2019 Proms Youth Choir Academy alto section is fully subscribed.

However, we are still inviting applications from enthusiastic sopranos, tenors and basses. If this sounds like you, we'd love to hear from you!

Previous Proms Youth Choir performances at the Proms

The inaugural BBC Proms Youth Choir concert in 2012 featured a performance of Tippett’s A Child of Our Time with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and David Robertson. The choir then joined forces with the BBC Symphony Chorus to open the 2013 Proms season – in Sakari Oramo’s first concert as Chief Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra – with a much-acclaimed performance of Vaughan Williams’s A Sea Symphony. In 2014, as part of the centenary of the start of the First World War, the choir performed Britten’s War Requiem with the very orchestra which performed the world première of the piece at the consecration of Coventry Cathedral in 1962 – the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. The BBC Proms Youth Choir performed Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius with Sir Simon Rattle and the Vienna Philharmoniker on three occasions in September 2015 including the penultimate night of the 2015 Proms season. In 2016, the BBC Proms Youth Choir Performed Verdi’s Requiem with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment with Marin Alsop. The BBC Proms Youth Choir opened the First Night of the Proms 2017 with a performance of John Adams's Harmonium, alongside the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, conducted by Ed Gardner. In 2018, the Proms Youth Choir performed the world premiere of a specially commissioned work composed by Eriks Esenvalds, conducted by Simon Halsey, and Beethoven’s Symphony No.9 with the World Orchestra of Peace, conducted by Donald Runnicles.

Proms Youth Choir 2017

Proms Youth Choir 2017

Proms Youth Choir perform John Adams’ Harmonium at the First Night of the Proms 2017

BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy 2017

The BBC Proms Youth Choir Academy rehearsing for the First Night of the Proms 2017.