Cornwall has long been famous for its choirs.
In Cornwall, organised choirs originated in the late nineteenth century in male dominated industries such as metal mining and fishing and as the result of the influence of Cornish Methodism.
Most Cornish choirs began in West Cornwall.
Traditional male and female voice choirs in Cornwall are a distinct part of Cornish cultural life.
Over thirty male and seventeen women’s choirs currently exist in Cornwall in addition to over thirty seven mixed choirs and several specialist health related choirs.
Women’s and male voice choirs have become an integral part of community events.
Festivals such as The Cornwall International Male Choral Festival, which began in 2003 and now takes place every two years (biennial), have brought choirs from Australia, Canada, South Africa, France, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Holland, Germany, Republic of Ireland, Italy, Hungary, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Switzerland, Finland, Faroe Islands, Jersey, Poland, Russia, Sweden, USA as well as from across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to join with Cornish choirs.
While many male voice choirs continue to sing traditional songs influenced by Cornwall’s heritage and its cultural roots in fishing, mining and religion, new choirs have formed which rely on more contemporary influences.
Community choirs have become very popular during the last few years and many new choirs and ensembles have been established across Cornwall.
People join for many reasons: you may already sing and want to be part of a choir; you enjoy meeting up with like minded people every week; you want to try something you’ve never done before; you think you can’t sing and you want to learn how to.
Singing has many social and health benefits. It’s relaxing and reduces muscle tension. Studies have shown it is good for both emotional and physical health.
Singing can improve your breathing as you learn how to breath properly, posture is improved, while warm up exercises provide a mini workout with stretch exercises and more.
Health professionals have confirmed that lung health can be improved by singing so it is beneficial for people with COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and other lung conditions.
Choir members with memory problems and dementia, who attend regularly, have been shown to benefit from singing in a choir. They report that learning new songs is cognitively stimulating and helps to improve their memory.
Everyone can sing, and given the right environment and motivation, anyone is capable of improving their singing technique if they want to.
Whatever your individual situation and your reason, becoming part of a local choir is a fun thing to do. Most don’t require you to audition.
Find your local Cornwall choir below.
Mixed Community Choirs
Children and Young People’s Choirs
Women’s Voice Choirs
COPD and Lung Health Choirs
Dementia Care Choirs
Traditional Male Voice Choirs
Contemporary Male Voice Choirs
Things to do
Maps of Cornwall :
The Ordnance Survey publishes the Explorer series of maps which are
ideal for walkers.
Scale 1 : 25 000
2.5 inches to 1 mile /
4cm to 1km.
Available in local bookshops or click on the links below to order online.
Those covering Cornwall:
Map of Isles of Scilly:101 Isles of Scilly
For more information: www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk