The Saint John Singers is a group of accomplished and committed amateur singers which leads the musical worship at some of our country’s most beautiful cathedrals, minsters, and abbeys, as a visiting choir whilst the resident choir is on holiday or otherwise engaged. We are incredibly fortunate to have Jeremy Jackman as our Musical Director. The choir undertakes three or four cathedral visits per year during the holiday periods Easter, May, summer and October. The choir also holds one or two Workshops/Training Days per year, open to all, which offer the opportunity to gain help, encouragement and advice on effective breathing, vocal production and stamina and guidance on developing reading and listening skills. Further Information
During the weeks leading up to a cathedral visit the choir usually rehearses four times, on alternating Thursdays and Fridays, at St John the Baptist Church, Windlesham, Surrey. The music is sent out to the singers well in advance and the choir is expected to familiarise themselves with the scores so that rehearsals can be focussed on performance rather than note bashing. Our upcoming schedule of visits and rehearsals can be found here. The Saint John Singers welcomes new singers in all voice parts. Contact the Secretary if you would like to come along to a rehearsal.
Celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2019, The Saint John Singers made its debut cathedral visit in 1989 under the direction of Ron Ferris. Ron was the Director of Music at St John the Baptist Church, Windlesham, where the choir still rehearses, and had been organist and tenor at St John's, Park, Swindon, hence the choir's name. During Ron's 23 year tenure the choir experienced many memorable occasions, including taking part in a service at Guildford Cathedral to mark the late Queen Mother's 100th birthday, and a special evensong at Worcester Cathedral on the 150th anniversary of the birth of Sir Edward Elgar. From 2013 until 2021 the choir's Musical Director was Andrew Phillips and went from strength to strength under his leadership.
The Saint John Singers welcomes new singers in all voice parts. Contact the Secretary if you would be interested in coming along to a rehearsal.Contact the Secretary
First Rehearsal - Friday 1st March 2024
Second Rehearsal - Thursday 14th March 2024
Third Rehearsal - Friday 22nd March 2024
Fourth Rehearsal - Thursday 4th April 2024
First Rehearsal - Thursday 25th April 2024
Second Rehearsal - Friday 10th May 2024
Second Rehearsal - Thursday 23rd May 2024
First Rehearsal - Friday 12 July 2024
Second Rehearsal - Thursday 25 July 2024
Third Rehearsal - Friday 16 Auust 2024
Fourth Rehearsal - Thursday 22 August 2024-->
Visits per cathedral
Introit - O Sing Joyfully - Batten
Preces & Responses - HCStewart
Canticles - Harwood in A flat
Anthem - My Song is Love Unknown - Jackman
Eucharist - Schubert Mass in G
Anthem - Let all Mortal Flesh - Bairstow
Anthem - Peace, Perfect Peace - Gibbons
Introit - Oh! for a closer walk with God - Stanford
Canticles - Smart in B flat
Anthem - O Lord the maker of al thing - Joubert
Introit - O for a closer walk with God - Stanford
Preces & Responses - Jackman
Canticles - Wood in D
Anthem - O Praise God in His Holiness - MacPherson
Fine Officii - Jackman
Eucharist - Jackson in G
Anthem - Here O My Lord - Whitlock
Introit - Thy Perfect Love - Rutter
Canticles - Stanford in C
Anthem - The Spirit of the Lord - Elgar
Preces & Responses - Clucas
Canticles - Noble
Anthem - The Lord has been Mindful - Wesley
Te Deum & Jubilate - Stanford in Bb
Anthem - See what love hath the Father - Mendelssohn
Eucharist - Jackson in G
Anthem - Call to Remembrance - Farrant
Canticles - Bairstow
Anthem - O God thou art my God - Purcell
Fine Officii - Jackman
The Reverend Canon Michael Garland
Canon Succentor, Gloucester Cathedral
I thought that the singing was of the highest order. We hope that you will come back to Gloucester at some time in the future.
St Albans Cathedral
Their music choices were appropriate both for the lectionary and the forces in the choir, and they performed to a high standard. The choir has a real appreciation for the liturgy, and are well supported. We have extended an open invitation to them to sing here again.
The Reverend Canon Dr Gordon Giles
Canon Chancellor of Rochester Cathedral
It was a joy to welcome the Saint John Singers to Rochester Cathedral in Eastertide 2022 to sing a weekend of Choral Mattins, Eucharist and Evensongs. With a mixed repertoire conducted with confidence and panache by Jeremy Jackman, the choir are attentive and able, singing with accuracy and aplomb. A big sound from a big hearted choir! Thank you for coming and do come again!
Member of Llandaff Congregation
I should like to congratulate the St John Singers and their young organist during their weekend residence at Llandaff Cathedral. I was fortunate enough to be present at the 11am choral eucharist on Sunday last, and was both moved and impressed by the choice of music (Ives and Gjeilo) and the very high calibre of the singing and playing. Please pass my sincere thanks and appreciation to all concerned for an uplifting service. I look forward to a return visit of such talented musicians to Llandaff.
Assistant Organist, Winchester Cathedral
Please pass on our thanks to the choir! Their music-making was hugely appreciated by everyone who heard it.
Dean of Wells
The Very Reverend Dr John Davies DL
I am writing on behalf of the Chapter to say thank you to your choir for singing the services in Wells Cathedral on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 April. We really enjoyed your contributions both musically and in fellowship. All of the hard work that goes into the music preparation and rehearsals is greatly appreciated.
Assistant Director of Music, York Minster
On behalf of all at York Minster, I’d like to thank you all most warmly for your contribution to the weekend’s worship here last weekend. Maintaining a high standard of choral worship during the holiday periods is important to us and we were very grateful for your help in upholding that. We are aware of the hard work and preparation which goes into a visit such as this, and was in evidence throughout the weekend in your well-chosen repertoire, and relaxed but well-prepared singing. We would be pleased to welcome you back to sing here again.
Choirs Administrator, Winchester Cathedral
The St John Singers have sung services at Winchester Cathedral on a regular basis over at least the past ten years. Those who run the choir are well-organised and efficient, sending their music in plenty of time. The choir has always been well-rehearsed and sung the services with great conviction and polish. We will be pleased to welcome them here again in 2018.
Jeremy Jackman has been a member of The King’s Singers, Chorus Master of the London Philharmonic Choir, and was for 20 years the Musical Director of the English Baroque Choir. Along the way he has sung for the BBC Northern Singers and the Tallis Scholars, and conducted at St Paul’s Cathedral, the Royal Festival Hall, St Mark’s Venice and St John’s Smith Square. He has worked with Julie Andrews, Placido Domingo and John Denver all at the same time, and once found himself (for TV) singing Christmas music on horseback at 8.30 am on a freezing cold morning beside a lake in Yorkshire – wearing a monk’s habit (don’t ask!).
But running like a golden thread through all of this is his love of – and immersion in – church music. ‘The trouble is, you can’t read,’ (he didn’t mean the music) said a young Barry Rose, telling Jeremy (aged 4¾) why he couldn’t immediately join the choir of St Andrew’s Kingsbury. The two years he did spend under Barry’s direction were seminal. His formative years thereafter consisted of one great musical experience after another; a chorister at St Paul’s Cathedral, a Junior Exhibitioner at the Royal College of Music, studying with Anthony Hedges (composition), and Paul Esswood and Mary Thomas (singing). Jeremy was a Lay Clerk at Westminster Cathedral (choirmaster, Stephen Cleobury) before joining The King’s Singers in 1980. With them he toured the world many times over, performing in the world’s most prestigious concert halls and making countless recordings and broadcasts.
On leaving the group in 1990 he founded Laudemus, a week-long Choral Evensong course in Dorset, England, in which the participants sing the office in a different church every day to different music. The course has now been running for more than 30 years. Jeremy’s compositions for church choirs include six settings of the Evening Canticles, five sets of Preces and Responses, introits, anthems, and a host of hymn arrangements and psalm chants. In early 2022 he was delighted to take up the post of Musical Director of the Saint John Singers.