Queen’s is well known in and beyond Oxford for the quality and quantity of its musical activities. The mixed-voice Chapel Choir is widely regarded as the finest such choir in Oxford. It is directed by the Organist (Dr Owen Rees) and the Organ Scholars; the singers include Choral Scholars (up to eighteen at any one time), Choral Exhibitioners from other colleges, and volunteers. The Choir sings for Evensong three times a week during term; it gives at least one major concert each term (working regularly with professional orchestras), and undertakes tours and short visits both within this country and abroad. The Eglesfield Musical Society, named after our Founder (and the oldest music society in Oxford), organises a substantial series of concerts and other events each year, ranging from chamber music and orchestral recitals to jazz and pop nights. These provide abundant performing and conducting opportunities for the College’s many musicians, as well as featuring visiting artists. There are weekly lunchtime organ recitals in College (the College organ – built by the Danish firm of Frobenius in 1965 – is one of the finest in the country). During the academic year 2013-14, Queen’s musicians will receive lessons and masterclasses from some of the UK’s top professional instrumentalists, as part of a residency programme by the principals of the Oxford Philomusica orchestra.
Excellent facilities for individual and group rehearsal are available in the two Music Practice Rooms, one equipped with a grand piano and the other with an upright piano and harpsichord. In addition to the organ, the chapel contains a concert grand piano and a fine harpsichord, and is acoustically one of the best chapels in Oxford for musical performance. The Shulman Auditorium houses the College’s Steinway, and is used for weekly recitals and instrumental and vocal teaching during term-time.