Music forms an integral part of the worship experience at St Stephen’s. The musical offering at the Parish Eucharist each Sunday consists of classic and modern hymns, chants from Taizé and Iona, part songs, canons and rounds for everyone to join in, and instrumental music for piano and organ.
The congregation includes many people who have skills and appreciation of all kinds of music. Many people sing strongly and enjoy part-singing.
The singing of the community is led by the St Stephen’s Singers, a volunteer choir who meet at 9.00am on Sunday mornings to prepare music for the 10.00am Parish Eucharist. The group includes people who are confident sight-readers, who are always happy to help others to develop their abilities.
Membership of the Singers is open to anyone who would like to take part. The group offers some limited opportunities for solo singing in the service, such as leading responsorial psalms, acclamations, and occasionally in service settings. All members are encouraged to sing in parts for hymns and chants.
The repertoire is drawn from a variety of sources, such as Together in Song. The hymns and psalm settings are chosen for their relevance to the scriptural passages for the day and follow the cycle of the church year.
Our vicar, Fr Dennis Webster, is an accomplished composer. The parish has a number of pieces from his pen, including mass settings and responsorial psalms.
The parish is welcoming and inclusive of people from a wide variety of backgrounds and philosophical convictions. We do not require a definite faith commitment from people looking to join the St Stephen’s Singers. No audition is required for prospective members.