Keble College Music Society

Ensembles: Keble College Chapel Choir, Keble String Orchestra, The Henry Ley Singers and Keble Big Band

The Henry Ley Singers - A Thrilling Voice is Sounding, MT '12

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About KCMS

Keble College Music Society (KCMS) was founded in 1876 with its first concert at the laying of the foundation stone of the Hall. Today, KCMS continues to be an integral part of College life, and has an ever-growing prominence in the University’s musical activities too. Keble has a range of ensembles, from the Keble Big Band and Keble String Orchestra, to the Henry Ley Singers and our Chapel Choir, and hosts a wide range of both professional and student recitals and other musical events each term. During this, the centenary year of Benjamin Britten’s birth, the ‘Britten at Keble’ series aims to bring to the College, University, and general public an exciting programme of celebratory events, to which all are particularly welcome. Further, KCMS aims for the musicality of individuals and smaller ensembles to flourish while at Keble, and as such subsidises music lessons, offers scholarships, and provides regular opportunities for all to display their musical talent.

Follow the link to our website, where you may read much more about the society, look at the events planned for this term, and join our mailing list.

Britten at Keble

2013 marks the centenary of the birth of English composer, Benjamin Britten. To recognize this exciting year, Keble College, Oxford, present a year-long series of concerts and recitals to celebrate 100 years of one of the greatest composers of the twentieth century. The programme of events largely focuses on Britten’s vocal and choral compositions, as well as the connection between Britten and Peter Pears, the composer’s life partner, who studied at Keble before meeting Britten.

For more information, visit the Britten at Keble website or like us on Facebook.

Keble College Chapel Choir

Twice every week the vast neo-gothic splendour of the Chapel of Keble College is filled with the sound of arguably one of the best mixed voice choirs in Oxford. The sound of the Chapel Choir has been heard on Radio 3 and Classic FM, on tours to the US, Japan and Korea, and the Choir has also recorded with Prior Records. As one of the friendliest choirs, Keble welcomes singers from throughout the University.

The choir sings services on Wednesday and Sunday evenings with a rehearsal before each service and an additional practice on Fridays. Those interested in joining the Chapel Choir will have the chance to audition for the College’s Fellow and Director of Music, Simon Whalley, early in Michaelmas. Alternatively, further information on joining may be obtained at any time by email (

Keble String Orchestra

The Keble String Orchestra (formerly Corpus String Orchestra) is a non-auditioning string orchestra which all University members are particularly welcome to join. It has recently moved from Corpus, where over 6 years it has built up a good reputation. The ensemble aims to play serious string orchestra repertoire to a high standard, with recent performances of works by Tchaikovsky, Mendelssohn and Sibelius, as well as new commissions and various concerti. Rehearsals for 2013-14 will be Saturday mornings with one concert a term. For more information about joining the String Orchestra or this term’s concert, please contact its manager, (

The Henry Ley Singers

The Henry Ley Singers is Keble’s 8-voice chamber choir, named after distinguished past organ scholar Dr Henry Ley, and made up of some of the finest singers from Keble and beyond. The choir rehearses fortnightly, and is aimed at anyone who is interested in performing choral music to a high standard, but perhaps can’t quite manage the time commitment of singing in a chapel choir (although chapel singers are welcome too!). The choir performs one concert a term, and auditions are held in 0th week of Michaelmas term. For more information at any time, please contact the Singers (

Keble Big Band

The Keble Big Band is for those people who prefer their jazz. Performing regularly to a very good standard, the Big Band can often be heard entertaining in Keble Bar. Recent highlights for the band include entertainment in Freshers’ Week, and ‘An Evening of Jazz’ in Hilary. To get further information about the Big Band, including when and where you can hear us and play with us, please contact the Managers (