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Bishops' Chorister Award

Church Music Award for Choristers under the patronage of the Bishops of Brentwood and Chelmsford

The Awards were established circa 1975 by Donald Coote, and ran with great success, until 1997, as Awards solely under the patronage of the Bishop of Chelmsford.

In 1998 the Awards became ecumenical with the Roman Catholic diocese of Brentwood and are now under the joint patronage of the Bishops of Chelmsford and Brentwood. The Awards are believed to be unique in this respect, and continue to be popular and to flourish across both dioceses

(validated at RSCM Silver Standard)

This Award, previously known as the Junior Award, is validated by the RSCM at Silver Standard. It is open to candidates of all ages and voices. 
Please note that the new syllabus contains some significant changes.

The Award is open to all choristers in church or school choirs within the area covered by the Roman Catholic diocese of Brentwood and the Anglican diocese of Chelmsford. This Award is also open to choristers of other denominations in this area and to individual church singers and cantors.

The purpose of the Award is to encourage musicianship, loyalty and a growing awareness of faith in choristers and to give a tangible recognition of such a standard. Candidates who attain this award will also have gained the pre-requisite for taking the RSCM Gold Award.

Examinations are held twice yearly, usually in May and October / November, with the Awards Ceremony being held in January either in Chelmsford or Brentwood Cathedral.

As will be seen from the attached syllabus, candidates are expected to demonstrate their ability in singing, both prepared and unprepared work, aural and sight-reading tests and general musicianship. They will also be expected to demonstrate a sound knowledge of the Bible and Liturgy. Examiners are RSCM validated.

NB: Prerequisite for entry to RSCM Gold Award 
Holders of the Bishops' Chorister Award (Junior) at Merit or Distinction level achieved in 2003 and 2004 no longer have the prerequisite for entry to the RSCM Gold Award since 31st December 2006.

All examiners are RSCM validated.

Successful candidates will be presented with a certificate and be entitled to wear the Award's medallion. The certificate will also reflect whether the candidate has met the required criteria for Merit (Commended) or a Distinction (Highly Commended), as defined in the syllabus.

The entry fee for 2020 is £25 per candidate.  The current cost of a medallion is £15.

Currently, all entries must be made via the Administrator, NOT via RSCM as stated on the form as this facility has not yet been set up for RSCM-EEL.

Cheques should be made payable to "RSCM-EEL”

For any further information please contact the Administrator:

Bill Brooks

Sample Exam Materials for Aural Awareness and Sight-reading

Sample tests for both bronze and silver awards, together with advice for preparing for examinations, can be found in the RSCM publication The Voice for Life Guide to Musicianship available from the RSCM Shop. This link will take you to the book itself where you can view sample pages.

RSCM-EEL Bishops’ Chorister (Silver) Award

Dates 2020

  • Last date of entry for May exam, 31st March, 2020

  • Exam - May 9th, 2020 ( Chelmsford )

  • Last date of entry for November exam 30th September 2020

  • Exam - November 7th 2020 ( Brentwood )

  • Awards Ceremony 23rd January 2021 at Chelmsford Cathedral

Area Roundup


A Concert at St. Mary’s, Wivenhoe

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