The Music Staff

Organist & Director of Music – Jan Pringle

Christmas angels

Choral tradition

All Saints has a four-part robed choir comprising of adults, young people, boys and girls who sing at the main Services each week. It is affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music (RSCM). Choristers are trained using this scheme and a large proportion have gained Deans’ and Bishops’ Awards at Guildford Cathedral.

Choir juniors being promoted

The PCC encourages this choral tradition and generously fund the work of the choir. Organ Scholarships are also available for promising musicians.

Choral Evensong

This lovely traditional service, using the Book of Common Prayer, is held on the 3rd Sunday of each month except August, December and January, when Carol Services – with choir highlights – take over.

It is becoming a tradition to have a special piece of music on a Sunday in Lent and in 2020 on Palm Sunday (5th April) at 6.30pm the choir had planned to sing Stainer’s Crucifixion.  Sadly, this is not now possible but we hope to present Allegri’s Miserere when things return to normal.  But while Covid silenced choral music in church the Choir were hard at work putting together splendid recordings – go to Choir Recordings and enjoy!

How to contact the Choir

To find out more about the choir, perhaps to sing at your wedding or to join as a chorister, please contact:

Choir News

  • How Recordings are achieved

    CHOIR CORNER All Saints Banstead is blessed in having both a choir and, of equal importance, an environment in which the work of the choir is valued. However, in recent months we have been forbidden to rehearse as a group and sing in church. Without careful planning our choir could collapse; there would be no choir to resume choral services once restrictions are removed. You have already read that my daughter, Francesca, was initially instrumental, both literally and metaphorically, in creating sing-along lines for our choristers and combining their individual contributions into something that could feature in our first recorded services. While many have an idea how hymns and anthems might be produced in this way I have been asked how we manage to deliver the psalm appointed each week; well, here’s the answer to their question. Unlike the vast majority of hymns, psalms are irregular; by this I mean that the number of syllables in each line changes from verse to verse. While the music repeats the length of each note has to be rather elastic to accommodate the number of syllables that will be sung to it. This is what I do… At the piano I play the chant while saying the words of the psalm, and the Gloria, and record it. Then, via email, I send the file to Francesca who, while listening to the melody of the chant and my spoken words, through an ear-piece, sings the psalm just as she would in church. Her recording comes back to me. Using her soprano performance as a template I record at the piano, individually, the verses for each of the alto, tenor and bass lines. Each of these is mixed with Francesca’s singing, quietly, so choristers can perform their parts with the syllables falling in the same places as when Francesca sung the psalm. Next, each chorister, while listening to their sing-along line, records their part and sends it to me. I then mix all the parts together to create the effect of a choir. The mixing also involves a bit of time-shifting to ensure everyone sounds perfectly in-step. As one might imagine, singing in isolation is far from easy and I, the congregation and, I trust, our Lord are very appreciative of the skill and dedication of our choristers. The penultimate stage of the process is completed in church when I, listening to the ‘choir’ through an ear-piece, accompany them on the organ, recording the sound on my phone placed in the choir. I have to make sure that I complete this before the clock chimes a quarter hour and that no one rattles the door in an attempt to come in! Lastly, I combine the organ part with the choir to produce what you hear between the Old and New Testament readings on Sunday morning. An additional step is performed by Alan Clarke who kindly downloads the file to his iPad which he sets up, connected to the church sound system, in the choir vestry; all I have to do is tap the screen at the appropriate time. If you think that you have spent a long while reading of this process, I can assure you that it will have been only a tiny fraction of the time it takes everyone to make the whole thing possible. Jan Pringle, Director of Music