The Bournemouth Symphony Youth Chorus was founded as the Dorset Youth Choir in 1997, but took on a new name and role in 2006 under the management of the Bournemouth Symphony Chorus. The BSYC is one of a handful of youth choruses in the country that are associated with a professional orchestra, which provides an exciting and rare opportunity for young people to sing with a full symphony orchestra.
Their history has been marked by a number of important performances, including the premières of Voices of Exile, and Not in our Time, both by Richard Blackford. They have participated in performances of major works which require a Children’s Chorus. These include Bach’s St Matthew Passion, Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Mahler’s Symphony no.8 (Symphony of a Thousand).
They participated in the Macmillan Choir, formed to perform James Macmillan’s Little Mass with the BSO in February 2016. In recent seasons they have also been involved with various charitable concerts including Save the Children at Wimborne Minster, the Dorset Youth Cancer Trust and the Wessex Chernobyl Children's Lifeline. They take part in the BSO Family Carol Concert each year where they have their own spot and in October 2017 appeared with the conductor Christopher Monks and Armonico in a performance of the Monteverdi Vespers.
In 2016, the Chorus was divided into two choirs, with younger singers forming the Bournemouth Symphony Children’s Choir, and the older ones the Bournemouth Symphony Youth Chorus. The present Director is Victoria Gray, who took up the role in April 2016. The choir’s accompanist is Katherine Wills.
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