Concerts at King's

Concerts at King's is an annual series of concerts organised by King's Director of Music, Stephen Cleobury. You can find other concerts on the Easter at King's and More concerts pages.

The programme is performed by various ensembles and orchestras, including the Dante Quartet, and the Cambridge University's Musical Society (CUMS).

Download the 2015 programme and booking form

The Fateful Voyage

Sunday 26 April 2015, 8.30pm
The Hall
Rupert Brooke

A deeply moving sequence of music and words devised to commemorate the centenary of the death of Kings’ beloved alumnus Rupert Brooke en route to Gallipoli with friends and composers FS Kelly and William Dennis Browne, including newly discovered unpublished songs.

Written by Kate Kennedy based on her forthcoming biography.

Andrew Kennedy, tenor
Ian Burnside, piano
Matthew Cammelle, reader/narrator

Tickets: £15 (£5 students), available from The Shop at King's (01223 769340).

This evening is part of a weekend festival to commemorate the life of Rupert Brooke (see For educational opportunities suitable for secondary aged children please email .

Giovanni Gabrieli and Venice

Friday 19 June 2015, 7.30pm
The Chapel


In 1615, with Monteverdi in charge and Gabrieli's Symphoniae Sacrae hot off the presses, the music of St. Mark's Basilica was unparalleled.

  • G Gabrieli: Music from the 1615 Collection
  • Works by Monteverdi and Lassus

Curated by Iain Fenlon

King’s College Choir
His Majesty’s Sagbutts and Cornetts
Stephen Cleobury conductor

Tickets: £25, £18, £15, £12 (£5 students, unsighted), available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340).

Singing on the River

Sunday 21 June 2015, 7.30pm
River Cam, King's College
The King's Men in punts

The King’s Men celebrate the 500th birthday of King’s College Chapel with music from every century.

A quintessentially Cambridge summer evening picnicking on the riverbank and listening to close harmony arrangements sung from a punt on the river.

Tickets: £12 (£5 students, children under 12 free)

Mendelssohn Celebration

Thursday 9 July 2015, 7.30pm
The Chapel
Alina Ibragimova

Alina Ibragimova

Mendelssohn found himself “extraordinarily affected” by a walking tour of Scotland in 1829; the country’s savage beauty haunted him for years, and inspired two of his best-loved works. King’s alumnus Edward Gardner conducts virtuoso-violinist Alina Ibragimova and the AAM in a programme sure to linger long in the memory.

  • Mendelssohn: The Hebrides (‘Fingal’s Cave’)
  • Mendelssohn: Violin concerto in E minor
  • Mendelssohn: Symphony No.3 in A minor ‘Scottish’

Academy of Ancient Music
Edward Gardner, conductor
Alina Ibragimova, violin

Tickets: £60, £50, £35, £25 (£5 unsighted), available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340).

Bach Celebration

Friday 10 July 2015, 7.30pm
The Chapel
John Butt

John Butt

Alumnus John Butt is a world authority on Bach and his handpicked ensemble is renowned for its powerful and exciting interpretations.

“Butt’s impeccably prepared Bach tastes more like a warming bowl of chocolate” (The Arts Desk 2013).

Curated by John Butt

  • Bach: Suite no 1 in C Major
  • Bach: Violin Concerto in E
  • Bach: Cantatas BWV 132,165,185

Clare Wilkinson, alto
Matthew Brook, bass
Dunedin Consort
John Butt, director

Tickets: £40, £30, £22, £15 (£5 students, unsighted), available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340).

Epiphany through Music

Saturday 10 October 2015, 6.00pm
The Chapel
Chapel 500 logo

Events over the weekend of 10-11 October 2015 celebrating the contribution of King’s College Chapel and its associated composers to the intellectual and cultural life of Great Britain.

The weekend will include works newly composed for the celebrations and a retrospective of the rich crop of King’s composers: Adès, Benjamin, Causton, Holloway, and the current Master of the Queen’s Music, Judith Weir.

Curated by Richard Causton, John Wallace and Mark Gotham.

Samuel Beckett in dialogue with King’s College Chapel

Monday 2 November 2015, 8.00pm
The Chapel

Held daily from Monday 2- Friday 6 November.

A multi-media event using Beckett materials in dialogue with the Chapel building – stone, wood, light, both artificial and through stained glass, and, above all, volume of space.

The centrepiece of the event is projection of some of the theatre photography of the distinguished photographer, John Haynes, who was the official photographer at the Royal Court in the heyday of its great Beckett productions.

Entrance free

Inspired by Beckett

Saturday 7 November 2015, 7.30pm
The Chapel
Samuel Beckett

Samuel Beckett

John Tilbury, pianist/composer

John Tilbury is a pianist and composer, many of whose performances are based on Beckett texts. The programme will include ‘What is the Word’, ‘Stirrings Still’ and Feldman’s Palais de Mari.

Entrance free with a retiring collection.

Curated by Christopher Prendergast.

Organ Gala

Wednesday 11 November 2015, 7.30pm
The Chapel
Thomas Trotter

Thomas Trotter

The magnificent organ is a vital and much loved part of the musical heritage of the Chapel and has an important role in the anniversary celebrations. This concert is devised to showcase the organ and the Chapel acoustic. The organ will sound magnificent in the gifted hands of Thomas Trotter, King’s alumnus and one of our great organists.

After the 2015 Nine Lessons and Carols service, the organ will fall silent for 9 months for essential repairs. This concert will raise money for the organ restoration and repair fund.

  • Widor: Toccata arr. Willcocks
  • Berlioz: Te Deum
  • Saint Saëns: Organ Symphony

Thomas Trotter, organ
King’s College Choir
CUMS Chorus
BBC Concert Orchestra
Stephen Cleobury, conductor

Curated by Flora Wilson.

Tickets: £60, £40, £30, £22, £15 (£5 student), available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340).

Please note: This concert will be broadcast live on Radio 3. Please take your seats by 7.25pm. Late comers will be admitted to the unsighted area via the northeast door as there is no interval. Please turn off all audible devices.

Cambridge Music Festival logo In partnership with the Cambridge Music Festival.

An die Musik

Saturday 14 November 2015, 8.30pm
The Chapel
James Gilchrist

James Gilchrist

1815 was a very productive year for both Beethoven and Schubert. Beethoven composed two cello sonatas and many songs. In the following year, he composed An die ferne Geliebte, considered to be the prototype for the song cycle.

Schubert wrote an astonishing number of songs in that year, including the much admired Der Erlkönig. His An die Musik was written in 1817 but sums up the spirit of this concert so beautifully that we have taken the liberty of appropriating it.

Two celebrated Kings’ alumni join the distinguished cellist, former King’s chorister Guy Johnston, to form an enticing chamber partnership.

  • Beethoven: Cello sonatas op.102
  • Beethoven: Piano Sonata op.90
  • Beethoven: An die ferne Geliebte
  • Schubert: 1815 songs to include ‘Der Erlkönig’

James Gilchrist, tenor
Guy Johnston, cello
Tom Poster, piano

Curated by Nick Marston

Tickets: £18 (students free), available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340).

Christmas Presence

Friday 4 December 2015, 6.30pm
The Chapel
The King's Singers

The King’s Singers

An evening of seasonal music to include Howells and Poulenc and close harmony arrangements. The ‘superlative vocal sextet’ (The Independent) will perform from different parts of the Chapel, taking full advantage of its celebrated acoustic. They will also perform the winning entry from the A Carol for Christmas competition.

Tickets: Antechapel £25, £22, £15; Choir (unreserved) £12 (students £5 on the door); available from The Shop at Kings (01223 769340). For Gala dinner tickets please email

A Carol for Christmas Competition

An opportunity for composers across the nation to have a carol performed in the stunning setting of King’s College, Cambridge this December, published by Novello & Co. Ltd, and recorded by Classic FM.

Workshop, 2pm, King’s College Chapel

An afternoon workshop is open to the public to hear youth choirs work on the winning carols from the A Carol for Christmas competition. With John Rutter, Stephen Cleobury and The King’s Singers. Tickets £7 (£3 students).

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