A group of singers dedicated to performing The Glorious Cathedral music of England and Europe

About the Andreas Ensemble

Why was it formed?

The Andreas Ensemble, first formed in Spring 2005 in Bishop Auckland, offers a wonderful opportunity for capable amateur singers to rise to the challenge of performing music from our glorious heritage of church music, the music of the great cathedral choirs of England and of Europe, alongside secular items like madrigals and part-songs.

The Andreas Ensemble is an occasional choir, performing not only in Bishop Auckland from time to time, but in other churches and locations around the region. It is by nature inter-church and inter-denominational and in no sense competes with parish choirs singing every Sunday in their own churches; indeed some of our members have been Choirmasters themselves in other churches some distance away.

Who sings in the Andreas Ensemble?

This is a friendly and enthusiastic chamber choir, which sets itself high standards of choral singing, drawing singers with a real love of church music from all over Co. Durham and from churches of all denominations, Methodist, Roman Catholic, Anglican and others, but including individuals not currently associated with any particular religious organisation.

Where does it meet?

The Ensemble rehearses each week, on Tuesday evenings 7.30-9.00 pm, in the lovely spacious acoustics of St. Mary's RC Church, Bishop Auckland.

What sort of performances does the Andreas Ensemble undertake?

The choir performs 5 or 6 times a year in a variety of venues and localities, which have included Sunderland Minster, Auckland Castle, Gibside, Laing Art Galley Newcastle alongside a whole range of churches and other prestigious locations.

Performances to date in various different venues throughout the region have included not only concerts, but also full choral evensongs and other special choir services, Carols by Candlelight with mulled wine and singing at particular events like the Brancepeth Flower Festival, the Bowes Museum Christmas Market, a workshop exploring the Advent and Christmas Lutheran chorales, and performances with orchestra and brass groups.
Details of past performances and up and coming events are listed separately (see index).
The Andreas Ensemble is also available to sing services in other churches of all denominations, for weddings and to take part in concerts and other festivities.

A lively and friendly group

The Ensemble is a friendly group, encompassing people from a wide range of ages and backgrounds, who enjoy a good social life together in addition to their musical activity.

What about joining in?

If you are interested in joining the Andreas Ensemble, members are required to: a) have some ability to read music or be prepared to make an intensive effort to learn b) have a reasonable choral voice and be able, with training to sing in tune and in time. We are looking now to expand our numbers with new singers in all voice registers. If you would like to join The Andreas Ensemble or would like to find out more, please contact Brian Varley, BA(Oxon) ARCO, on (01388) 606075 or email: brianvarley@orpheusmail.co.uk
We'll be delighted to hear from you.

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