A vacancy has arisen for one Tenor Lay Clerk to join the group of nine regular Lay Clerks beginning June 2022 or soon after. Lay Clerks are required to sing at Sunday morning Solemn Mass at St George's Cathedral during term time, as well as other major occasions during the liturgical year, such as Ash Wednesday, Holy Week and Christmas services.
Worship at St George’s Cathedral is led by the Cathedral Choristers (mixed) and Lay Clerks. The Cathedral Consort, the cathedral’s youth choir, leads worship at the 10am Family Mass, and the Choristers and Lay Clerks sing for the 12pm Solemn Mass. Choristers are drawn from local state primary schools in the Elephant and Castle area and are often taught to read music and sing from scratch. The Cathedral also has a Junior Choir which rehearses weekly and sings for mass monthly. The Music Staff consists of a Director of Music and Assistant Director of Music (Organist) and nine lay clerks. During full term, Solemn Mass is sung each Sunday at 12pm by the Choristers and Lay Clerks, preceded by a 10.40am rehearsal in the Song Room. At Solemn Mass there is a predominance of Latin motets and Mass Settings, with Gregorian chant propers. For extra services the Lay Clerks function as a separate entity, being joined by professional adult sopranos.
The year is divided into three terms: Michaelmas from early September to Christmas Day, Lent from early January to Easter Day, and Easter from Easter 3 until mid-July. There are approximately 40 choral Sundays per year. There is usually one Sunday off at each half-term. Lay Clerks are expected to prioritise attendance at the required services, in order to maintain a consistent and cohesive group, enabling us to continue to lead the worship at St George's Cathedral with dignity and musical excellence; also to give broadcasts and make recordings of the high quality associated with a cathedral choir.
The current standard fee for each service is £66.50 plus holiday pay, though for midnight services and other comparable events there is an enhanced fee of £83 plus holiday pay. Additional opportunities may be available to sing as a Cantor for Masses during the holidays at this enhanced rate, and weddings and funerals also occur throughout the year as extra services. The Cathedral music department also oversees the Southwark Singing Programme, a schools-based education project for Catholic schools in the local area. Additional work acting as a vocal tutor to choristers or delivering whole-class singing work in schools may be offered to suitable candidates on an ad hoc basis according to their skillset.
Applicants should be excellent singers with extensive experience in ensemble and liturgical singing, fluent sight readers and familiar with Gregorian chant (four line) notation. The position of a Lay Clerk comes under the heading of regulated activity and as such is subject to an Enhanced DBS check.
If you wish to apply for the post, please send a copy of your Curriculum Vitæ to Jonathan Schranz, Director of Music at firstname.lastname@example.org together with the names and contact details of two referees, by 5pm on Friday 13 May. Shortlisted candidates may be invited to deputise at Solemn Mass and/or to an interview and audition at mutual convenience at St George's Cathedral.