Welcome to the website of the choir of St. John
the Baptist Church in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire. With a repertoire of music spanning six centuries, the choir continues the long tradition of fine choral music
to complement the worship at St. John's.
From the wealth of experience gained at St. John's the choir are able to sing at churches and cathedrals across the country which in 2017 will include Wakefield Cathedral and St German's Cathedral, Peel. The choir also travel abroad with recent tours to Amsterdam and Leiden in 2013 and to Venice and St. Mark's Basilica in 2008.
The choir has an enthusiastic and talented treble section, both boys and girls. The choristers are taught by the Director of Music, Mark Hunter, and develop strong vocal skills and musicianship. New choristers are always welcome; further details can be found under
recruitment. Mark also runs a flourishing junior band to accompany the music at the monthly all age service.
In July 2010, the junior choristers were thrilled to feature in a BBC Songs of Praise from Knaresborough singing 'The Irish Blessing', arranged for the programme by Paul Leddington-Wright. More recently, in early 2012 the choir Trebles recorded a CD 'Ex Ore Innocentium' which has been well received with favourable reviews.
Choir Presentations 2014
In addition to singing, the choir enjoys a variety of social events which encompass the members' families and the wider church community, and are an important aspect of its continued success.
From a recent tour.....
"After the service several people remarked favourably on the
well-balanced ensemble sound, the lively word-painting, and
the dynamic range and control of your singers....they showed
to great effect the whole dynamic range from pianissimo
to fortissimo, which drew out beautifully the drama of
the music. One member of the congregation used the word ‘alive’ to describe their singing; another used the word ‘energizing’: and other comments focussed with approval on the fact that young Christians in Knaresborough have the increasingly rare opportunity to experience the Anglican choral repertoire through their participation in your church choir."
Richard Darke ARSCM
Richard Darke, Director of Music at St John's from 1994 to 2016, was awarded an Associateship of the Royal School of Church Music at the RSCM Celebration Day at St. Edmundsbury Cathedral on 3rd October 2015. The award is in recognition of his services to the RSCM including his work with the RSCM Awards Scheme, RSCM Courses and his leadership of affiliated choirs over many years, including those at Bradford, St Edmund's Roundhay Leeds & St. John's Knaresborough where he has trained, encouraged and inspired generations of young choristers.
Organist & Choirmaster: David Salter MA LLM ARCO
Director of Music: Mark Hunter
News & Events
Sunday 22nd January 4pm Choral Evensong
Introit: When to the temple Mary Went (Eccard),
Canticles: Dyson in D,
Anthem: Blessed be the God and Father (Wesley)
The choir's latest recording 'Ex ore innocentium', featuring St John's trebles, can be purchased here or from choir members. For further details go to 'Choir CD'
Christmas Eve 7pm Service of Nine Lessons and Carols
Carols: In the bleak midwinter (Darke), O Holy Night (Adam),
Sussex carol (trad. arr. Wilcocks), How far is it to Bethlehem (White), Make we joy (Hall),
Candlelight carol (Mold), Venezuelan carol (Carter), Christmas Blessing (Stopford)
Friday 30th December 2016 Choral Evensong at York Minster
Canticles: Stanford in G,
Anthem: Make we joy (Hall)
Choir Tour to Newcastle Cathedral Mon 24th October 2016
Introit: Open Thou mine eyes (Rutter),
Canticles: Stanford in G,
Anthem: They that go down to the sea in ships (Sumsion)
Photo © newcastlephotos.blogspot.com
FEVA Weekend at St John's - Knaresborough Festival of Entertainment & Visual Arts 2016
Saturday 13th August 7.30 pm FEVA Concert 'Ave Maria'
St John’s Choir, Voix Celestes and friends presented a varied programme of vocal and choral music spanning five centuries to celebrate the Virgin Mary,
including works by Benjamin Britten, George Dyson, Tolga Kashif, Simon Lindley, Govanni Pergolesi, Robert Parsons, Philip Stopford and Louis Vierne;
plus music from stage and screen, featuring songs from ‘A Chorus Line’ and ‘the Wizard of Oz’. Guest artist was the outstanding young flautist Alexandra Clarke,
who performed pieces by Ian Clarke, Gabriel Fauré, David Heath and Robert Muczynski.
Sunday 16th August 10.30 am FEVA Eucharist
Haydn's Missa Sancti Nicolai (St Nicholas Mass) performed liturgically by St John’s Choir and friends.
The preacher was the Very Rev. Jonathan Greener, Dean of Wakefield Cathedral.
Sunday 16th August 7.30 pm Concertos by Candlelight
Knaresborough Pro-Musica performed well-loved baroque concertos by Bach, Handel and Albinoni
in the candle-lit setting of the church.
Link to the FEVA website
Choir Tour to Pembroke College, Cambridge
Fri 29th July to Sat 30th July 2016
Celebrating David Salter's 30th Anniversary as Organist & Choirmaster at St John's. The music for Evensong included the first performance of
The Choristers' Prayer (John Benson, Pembroke 1966),
Responses: Kenderdine (Pembroke 1955),
Canticles: Dyson in D,
Anthem: Thou, O God, art praised in Zion (Malcolm Boyle)
Parish Classic Car Show and Fête
Sunday 5th June 2016 at St John's
Classic Cars - Entertainment - Stalls - Bell Tower Tours - Refreshments & Licensed Bar
Fauré's Requiem 19th March 2016 at Christ Church, Harrogate & 26th March 2016 at St John's Knaresborough (Easter Vigil)
Services with the combined choirs of Christ Church, Harrogate & St John's, Knaresborough
Evensong at Leicester Cathedral Saturday 20th February 2016
with the combined choirs of St John's Knaresborough & St. Mary Magdelene Clitheroe.
Introit: When rooks fly homeward (Baynon),
Canticles: Collegium Regale (Howells),
Anthem: Like as the hart (Howells)