Angel Voices Soar

Our hardworking choristers go on tour to Germany this summer. See our website for how you can support them.

Ripon Cathedral choir goes on tour to Germany this summer, the latest exciting chapter in a story which has seen the renaissance of a dwindling choir over a two year period.

When Director of Music Dr Ronny Krippner arrived post pandemic the boys’ choir had folded, with boys and girls singing together. Covid had made recruitment impossible and numbers were falling.

However, following two large scale recruitment drives at schools in the region (the cathedral is currently in the midst of a third) there are now more than 60 choristers with thriving boys’ and girls’ choirs and a growing number of choral scholars – older students who were either choristers or have joined since. A more intensive schedule was also introduced, with rehearsals both before and after school.

Now, two years after it was reformed the choir has recorderd its first commercial CD ready for Christmas, and Dr Krippner is taking the singers to his native Bavaria. There, the choir will be singing services and concerts at Munich Cathedral, Regensburg Cathedral, Waldsassen Basilica and Nuremberg Frauenkirche.

Dr Krippner said: “The choir will be bringing English cathedral music to the continent and the choristers and choral scholars will be our cultural ambassadors. They have the opportunity to experience German culture and sing in a multitude of beautiful buildings. It’s not all work and no play though, they will experience German life and will enjoy some sightseeing with a trip to a water park and the famous Hofbräuhaus in Munich to sample typical Bavarian cuisine. They will be learning about German history and culture.”

Choir families are paying a portion of the cost and the cathedral is subsidising the tour to enable all children, regardless of financial means, to be able to take part. The cathedral is itself a charity and choristers and parents have been running a host of fundraising activities to help fund the trip. These include a sponsored haircut, chocolate tombolas and a bingo night in the nave. The wives and daughters of clergy and music staff also completed The Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, raising more than £2,000.

Walker Elaine Gisbourne said: “When an opportunity like this arises, for the choristers to take a once in a lifetime trip, we believe nothing should stand in their way. The opportunity to share their skill with the world should be celebrated and supported.

“We are a group of women who work with, or are close to, the cathedral music department and see the hard work and dedication of these children on a daily basis and believe they should have the chance to go to Bavaria.

“The Ripon Cathedral Choristers are an extraordinary bunch of young people. They rehearse both before and after school and spend their Sundays at the cathedral. Words cannot express how brilliant, resilient, talented and strong these young choristers are.”

Ahead of the tour the fabulous Ripon Cathedral Choir will be in concert on July 13 at 7.30pm – with a taste of their repertoire for Germany – tickets available soon!

Services & Concerts in Germany

July 27 6pm Sung Eucharist: St Anton’s Church, Regensburg

July 28 10am Sung Eucharist: Regensburg Cathedral

July 28 5pm Concert: Waldsassen Basilica, Upper Palatine

July 29 6pm Sung Eucharist: Munich Cathedral

July 30 12.15pm Concert: Frauenkirche, Nuremberg

Ripon Cathedral Development Campaign – Donate now (cafonline.org)