Murray Edwards Music Society
The Murray Edwards Music Society seeks to support all College musicians and give everyone an opportunity to participate in college musical life. All musical styles and standards are welcome.
We run a range of ensembles and event series, with performances ranging from concerts in the Dome and Fellows’ Drawing Room, to relaxed events in the bar and garden.
Musical Ensembles at Murray Edwards College
Inter Alios is the joint choir of Murray Edwards College and Churchill College. The choir sing alternate Sundays at each College, serving as the Chapel Choir to the ecumenical Chapel at Churchill, and hosting a unique 'Music and Words' event in Murray Edwards, which combines choral music, poetry and a short address on a topic pertinent to the human experience. This musical alternation introduces the choir to probably the broadest and most diverse repertoire of any Cambridge College choir.
The title, 'Inter Alios', literally translates as 'among others' and speaks to the collective spirit. We are proudly inter-faith, inter-collegiate and international in our make-up. On top of that, we seek to juxtapose well-known choral works with contemporary repertoire, and particularly music by female composers. We have premiered a number of pieces including works by Erollyn Wallen, Stef Conner, Anna Semple and a host of student composers.
The choir's annual schedule increasingly includes trips outside of Cambridge to perform in cathedrals such as Ely, Rochester, and Canterbury. We are regular contributors to the Brandenburg Choral Festival, in venues such as St Martins in the Fields.
The ‘Orchestra on the Hill’ (‘OotH’) is the joint orchestra for Murray Edwards and our neighbouring ‘hill’ Colleges. The repertoire ranges from classical symphonies to film music and new works. The standard is about Grade 8 and new members are always welcome: especially strings and brass! OotH is a very friendly, social group and so it’s a great way to meet musicians in other Colleges. OotH also provides great opportunities for budding conductors and soloists.
Other ensembles, groups, and bands: if you are interested in forming a new music group involving members of the College, the Music Society will be happy to help support your activities in whatever way we can. We want to encourage all music-making in College, wherever it originates. Past ensembles have included chamber music groups, jazz bands, folk groups, and rock bands. Previous support has included performance opportunities, rehearsal space and financial help.
Practice facilities in College
The Music Room contains a Danemann Upright Piano and a Kawai Electric Upright Piano. It is located through the external double doors behind the Porters' Lodge and can be booked by students.
The Coach House, a recently-renovated building located between Paula Browne House and the Tennis Courts, is a dedicated space for students which includes music practice rooms with pianos.
The Fellows’ Drawing Room (FDR) has a fine Steinway Grand Piano which is available for use by pianists of Grade 8 or above (or equivalent).
We run two flagship year-round series of events. Both series are typically held in the FDR and are free with refreshments provided:
Music Recitals are a series of free, short, high-quality, informal performances on your doorstep. We showcase a range of talent from the College and the University, and our termly recital series usually includes one external professional performer. At least 50% of our artists are women, and we have a tradition of including one work by a woman in every programme.
Music and Words are peaceful events featuring music, poetry, and a short address from a Fellow all organised around a topical theme.
We also provide music for Christmas, Burns Night, International Women’s Day and for a great number of ad hoc events.
Murray Edwards College runs an annual Music Awards competition. It is open to all undergraduates and postgraduates in any subject, and all instruments and styles of music are very welcome. Up to five scholarships (up to a maximum combined value of £800) will be awarded each year, to be spent on instrumental/vocal tuition. The applicants will be judged on a short recital performance and a short informal interview at which we discuss their music-making and proposed contribution to the College’s musical life. For more information, please contact the Director of Music, Ewan Campbell.