The world's oldest choral society. Making music continuously since 1817

Welcome to Halifax Choral Society

News — 2018-2019  –  the 201st season

This season marks the advent of a third century of unbroken performance.  This makes the Society unique, no other choral society in the world has been in regular performance as long.  When the Society was founded Napoleon Bonaparte was living in exile on St Helena!

OUTREACH 2019 – A special opportunity – six inspirational workshops for anyone and everyone who wants to try singing in a choir.  Not quite sure how to find the ‘voice hidden inside you’?  Never learned to read music? Unsure about the choral singing experience?  Now here is a really good fun way to give it all a try.  For full details please see our Outreach page: Outreach 2019

Localgiving   Our Localgiving page is here (link opens a new page/tab). Money is a constant challenge –

please donate whatever you can to help us to keep singing for you for another 200 years

Halifax Choral Society – its 200th Season

an exhibition by Halifax Photography Society.

Beginning Saturday May 11th (official opening at 2pm) and running until Sunday 23rd June  2019 at the Photography Gallery, Dean Clough, Halifax HX3 5AX  (the gallery is open from 9am until 7pm daily).  Admission Free

This exhibition showcases photographs taken by Halifax Photographic Society members during the bicentennial season of Halifax Choral Society.  These pictures are the result of a unique collaboration between the two societies and were taken over a 14 month period during 2017 & 2018.

Exclusive and wide ranging access was given to the three photographers involved who recorded a very special set of images spanning live concerts, CD recording sessions, presentations and rehearsals.

These historic pictures have already been published in a 100 page, limited edition photobook (of which a few copies remain and may be on sale at Dean Clough).  Now this exhibition will showcase to the public the work of one society focussing on the work of the other!

Recording the Holy Face at Huddersfield Town Hall, summer 2017  with members of Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus, Yorkshire Youth Choir (in the balcony to the left) and Black Dyke Band.  One of the unique bicentenary occasions captured by the Photographic Society

Sunday 9th June 2019 at 3pm at Sheffield City Hall

Joining Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus as their guests in

THE HOLY FACE by Philip Wilby and PARADISE by Paul Mealor

St John The Baptist  (Michelangio da Caravaggio 1571–1610)

Halifax Choral Society is delighted to have been invited to join forces with Sheffield’s premiere choir and the Yorkshire Youth Choir to sing Philip Wilby’s The Holy Face, with a group of splendid soloists.  The singers will be accompanied by the world-famous Black Dyke Band in this concert premiere of Philip Wilby’s new oratorio for three choirs, brass band and organ.  Commissioned by the Society to celebrate our Bicentenary, the work was written for orchestra or brass band accompaniment, and last season the same three choirs premiered the orchestral version in Halifax, and recorded the brass band version with the Black Dyke Band. More details (preface from the vocal score) and buy the recording.

The Holy Face tells one of the great bible stories – the life of St John the Baptist, last of the old testament prophets and a contemporary of Jesus.  St John the Baptist is the patron saint of the town of Halifax, whose name is said to be derived from old English meaning ‘Holy Face’.  Hence this fantastic new work refers both to the Saint and to the town that carries a form of his name.

Also on the programme will be Welsh composer Paul Mealor‘s new work ‘Paradise‘  (premiered by Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus with Black Dyke Band in Manchester last season as part of the prestigious RNCM Brass Band Festival).  Paul Mealor came into the public eye when his motet ‘Ubi Caritas et Amor‘ was performed at the Royal wedding in 2011, and Chorus and Band recorded ‘Paradise’ for what is likely to prove a very popular new CD to be released later in the year.

Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus and Halifax Choral Society with Yorkshire Youth Choir

Brass BandBlack Dyke Band with Dr. Nicholas Childs

Conductor – Darius Battiwalla

Soprano – Catrin Pryce-Jones                             Alto – Emma Stannard
Tenor Richard Rowe                                            BassJerome Knox  

TICKETS (subject to booking fees) available online / 0114 2 789 789 / in person at the Sheffield City Hall Box Office / on the door

Please note that tickets for under 18s are FREE!  Also note that a £5 discount is available, on presentation of a ticket for either of Sheffield Philharmonic Chorus’ concerts earlier in the Season: the Christmas 2018 concert or the April 2019 B Minor Mass!

Music Director Recruitment

After thirty years of committed, inspiring musical leadership our conductor John Pryce-Jones will be standing down.  The Society invites applications from suitably experienced candidates for the role of Musical Director – full details can be found here:

Its members may be amateurs from many walks of life but they pride themselves on professional singing.

Throughout its long history, the Choir has performed almost every major choral work in the repertoire.  Halifax Choral Society has always aimed high and performed with first-rate orchestras, soloists and conductors.  Looking through the annals of the Society is to turn back the pages of musical history of the past two centuries.  If you are interested in singing with us, complete the form on this page to receive more information, or contact the Administrator

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