Lay Clerkships

Choir in cloistersThe original foundation of Christ Church included one Organist (who also acted as Director) and eight Lay Clerks (adult male singers). Today, at any one time, the choir consists of approximately sixteen Choristers (boys), six Lay Clerks (professional singers), and six Academical Clerks (undergraduates) who are also known as Choral Scholars, in addition to the Director of Music (who has the official historic title of ‘Organist’), the Sub-Organist, and one or two Organ Scholars.

The choir is revered for the vibrancy of its sound and its artistic flexibility, performing early and contemporary music with equal skill. Over the years the choir has provided a perfect platform for singers to progress to other award-winning choral groups such as the BBC Singers, The Sixteen, The King’s Singers, The Tallis Scholars and The Cardinall’s Musick as well as to solo careers in oratorio, opera and musical theatre. 

Lay Clerks are expected to take part in the Cathedral Choir’s regular schedule of choral services held in Christ Church Cathedral, which are normally as follows:


9.45am Matins
11am Sung Eucharist
6pm Evensong (rehearsal 5pm)


6pm Evensong (Thursday: 6pm Sung Eucharist) (rehearsal 5pm)


6pm Evensong (rehearsal 4.45pm)

The 6pm service on Monday does not usually involve the Cathedral Choir.

How to apply for Lay Clerkships

Vacancies are normally advertised on the Christ Church website, on Twitter @ChChCathedralOx, and in the Church Times.