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The competition explained

The adjudicators at each round of the competition will be judging your performance on the following criteria:

  Technical achievement

We encourage choirs to demonstrate their versatility via programmes which demonstrate a variety of styles, changes of mood or pace. If your choir sings a particular style of repertoire then perform a programme that demonstrates the range of music within that. The adjudicators recognise that many choirs sing a particular style of repertoire.

Most choirs choose to perform without music scores, but it is not essential to sing from memory.

Do not feel obliged to include material which is outside your choir's usual range or to perform choreographed pieces if you don’t normally.

The most important thing is to do what you do best!

Stuart Barr, one of the judges for BBC Radio 3 Choir of the Year 2008, shares his observations on the last competition:

“Being a judge on Choir of the Year is a tough job, such is the talent in the competition. So varied were the styles and musical choices that we were forced to step back and really question what makes a top choir.

Some choirs are good at rehearsal discipline and attention to detail. Some relish the adrenalin and truly rise to the occasion of singing in front of 1,000 people. Others ooze sheer musicality in every phrase they sing. Yet when we found a choir that excelled at all three, we were won over almost immediately - as were the audiences.

One of the highlights was the number of good youth choirs coming through: by far the biggest category in 2008. It's so good to see teenagers coming together to make music to such a high standard - it gets to the core of why music making is such a positive force for society."
Our Judges

Meet the Judges

Stuart BarrKen BurtonGillian DibdenStephen ConnollySusan HollingworthEugene Skeef

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