Musical Director

Vacancy type: Musical Director

Application deadline: Monday 3rd June

Description of vacancy: Songbirds Choir seek new Musical Director

Location: Cardiff

Remuneration: To be discussed at interview

Songbirds is a community choir for LGBT+ women and non-binary people based in Cardiff. Our Musical Director is relocating so we are seeking to appoint a new Musical Director from September 2019.

Songbirds was set up in 2012 and we currently have around 30 members.  We are an upper voice choir and currently have three parts – 1st Soprano, 2nd Soprano and Alto. We rehearse every Monday from 7.30pm at City United Reform Church in Cardiff city centre.

Songbirds Choir is a family – the ethos of the choir is acceptance and fun; we are a community, and we place more importance on inclusivity than being note-perfect though we do work very hard to create a beautiful sound. We are looking to appoint a professional musician with the appropriate skill and experience in leading a choir to fill the post. We are a choir for all self-defining LGBT+ women and non-binary people and are seeking to appoint someone who will be excited about working with a diverse and varied group of people, and who can appreciate and value the different backgrounds of our members.

The choir’s repertoire is a mixture of pop, musical theatre and folk but we are open to other styles of music, bearing in mind that we learn by ear.

The musical director would be expected to support the choir to put on our own concerts once to twice a year, as well as performing at community events across Cardiff and South Wales and performing at joint events with our friends South Wales Gay Men’s Chorus and Cardiff Trans Singers.

We do not rehearse with an accompanist but do engage accompanists and instrumentalists for concerts.

Please note we only seek applications from women.

Main duties and responsibilities 
– To direct and conduct rehearsals 
– To conduct concerts and performances 
– To ensure that good choral practice and singing technique are core to rehearsals 
– To select music for each season in collaboration with the committee 
– To lead, with assistance when needed from the committee, in selecting and engaging soloists and instrumentalists for concerts 
– To attend committee meetings as an ex officio member 
– To attend and report to the AGM of the choir 

–  The MD would be expected to be available on occasions to attend extracurricular activities beneficial to the development of the choir [with appropriate remuneration]

Person Specification 

Essential experience and knowledge

–       Appropriate background working as a professional musician including teaching and working with choirs, soloists and instrumentalists

–       Experience in liaising with, and engaging with soloists and instrumentalists within the choir budget

–       Experience of working collaboratively with choir committees and communicating the committee’s shared vision for the choir

–       Qualifications in music/choral conducting

Essential skills and abilities

–       Excellent communication skills, with an ability to communicate and translate complex musical direction to members with limited musical background

–       Proven ability to energise the choir with passion and enthusiasm

–       Ability to communicate encouragement and a positive musical environment 

–       Ability to motivate and foster the development of members with varying levels of musical knowledge and skill

–       Ability to choose imaginative and engaging concert programmes with broad audience appeal, within the choir budget

–       Proven ability to plan musical materials for each term in advance

–       Ability to assist new members with placement according to voice type

–       Ability to respect the diverse nature of working with LGBT+ group of women and non-binary people

–       Ability to take direction from the choir and committee in matters of LGBT+ importance (ie participation in certain community concerts or events)

Desirable experience

–       Experience of arranging music and adapting arrangements to suit diverse voice parts 

To apply for the post please send a cover letter and CV to to

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview on 24th June. The selection process will consist of a panel interview followed by a 25 minute audition. Further information will be provided to shortlisted candidates.