Balliol seeks a new organ scholar

Friday 12 June 2020

Balliol seeks applications for organ scholars, for entry in 2021 and 2022. The organ scholars at Balliol form a central part of Chapel and musical life in the College, as Yasar Cohen-Shah, Senior Organ Scholar (Balliol 2018, BA History), explains:

Yasar Cohen-Shah (Balliol 2018), Organ Scholar‘I chose Balliol because of the independence the organ scholar has in running the musical life of the Chapel. With one service a week the workload is very manageable, but running the show on your own is a really exciting opportunity to gain confidence in conducting and accompanying and to do your own thing with the choir. 

‘I particularly love conducting the choir. Choosing appropriate music and organising the choir is quite a challenge to get right but such a thrill when you do. There’s no better feeling than seeing them giving it their all and sounding amazing. 

‘We are a very friendly and welcoming choir, and because it’s non-auditioning, everyone is there because they enjoy it and love being part of the community, so there’s a fab atmosphere. The weekly schedule really makes time for the choir to bond: free drinks after every Friday rehearsal, and drinks and dinner in Hall after every Sunday evensong, along with termly formal choir dinners, regular cheese and wine with the Chaplain and informal socials all the time. 

‘Being organ scholar at Balliol is a highlight of Oxford for me - and with the imminent refurbishment of both our wonderful Harrison organ in Chapel (photo below)and the spectacular Willis organ in Hall, now is a great time to apply!

Further details about the organ scholarship and how to apply are here.

Harrison organ in Balliol Chapel