Societies and activities
King's has a wealth of societies and college activities. Here are some of the most popular ones:
Making King's Affair decorations
King's Art Centre exhibits work by students and local artists. You can also go to classes in life drawing, drawing and painting, and digital art. Or you can use the messy room to work on your own projects. The College runs an annual art competition and has an extensive collection of artwork, some of which can be borrowed by students.
The King's Bunker
Venus Envy - one of more than 20 acts playing at King's Occupy
The Bunker is the exciting student-led venue at King's, a versatile underground space used for dance nights, music, and sometimes comedy, theatre and all sorts of other events as well. The venue is run by a Bunker Committee of King's students, who put on great events through the year, with good music and cheap prices. There are regular Bunker nights in the bunker itself, special themed nights such as Valentine's special, and large multi-room events, such as the recent Oddity (March 2014) featuring Jam City supported by Her Records and Metrist, and Occupy (December 2013) with Xxxy and Randomer.
The King's drama society puts on plays in different locations around the College including Keynes Hall, the Bunker and the Fellows' Garden. Performances are open to the general public as well as students. If you're interested in theatre, you can get involved in all parts of the productions, both on and off the stage. Most recently, King's Drama have staged Jean-Paul Sartre's No Exit, Noel Coward's Blithe Spirit, and Peter Shaffer's The Gift of Gorgon, as well as one-night monologue showcase events. King's students are also regularly involved in productions elsewhere in the University, including those staged at the ADC Theatre or the Corpus playroom.
King's Film Society, free to College students, holds regular screenings in King's during term-time. There are several meeting rooms in College with projector, screen and audio equipment. More generally, King's College Student Union has a projector which can be borrowed by students, as well as a wide-ranging DVD collection.
King's flute choir was set up to encourage flautists of all standards to play music together. There are no auditions and no pressure: they just turn up once a week with their flutes and get playing! The flute choir plays music of all kinds and anyone who has ever played a flute is welcome. The group holds termly concerts in King's to celebrate the weeks of practice and give them something to work towards. The aim is to encourage and support flautists throughout their time at College and beyond.
Growing food / keeping bees
King's has a number of allotments where students can grow vegetables if they want to. The college gardeners look after them when students are away during the vacations. There is also an Arpiculture society, which keeps bees in a bee hive. It's quite a new society but we hope to harvest and perhaps sell the honey in the future. See the green activities page for more information about sustainability projects in the College.
King's hosts Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning (LGBTQ) events, including various social events and a discussion group.
King's Musical Society (KCMS) is one of the most vibrant and high-profile music societies in Cambridge. King's students cover a huge range of music each year, organising large-scale orchestral concerts each term, held in the stunning, world-famous Chapel, as well as quirky and intimate concerts in the Provost's drawing room. One highlight of the year is the May Week Chapel Concert, which features the combined forces of the KCMS orchestra, King's College Choir and King's Voices. There's always a great party on the back lawn afterwards too. See the Music page for more detail.
Outdoor activities: Mountaineering and Kayaking
Snow fun on tour in Scotland
King's has a dedicated mountaineering and kayaking society which runs climbing sessions during term and provides kayaks for students to use on the river Cam (which runs through King's). The society runs training sessions where you can learn new skills so it doesn't matter if you've not got much experience.
Most importantly, there are very popular trips during the vacations, enabling students to enjoy camping, kayaking, climbing, hiking and other outdoor activities in more challenging scenery.
The society is ever growing and open to suggestions if students want to run a different activity. See the KMKA website.
Experiment with a negative sandwich by Nick Morris
If you're interested in photography, King's has an underground Dark Room and provides chemicals and other equipment for processing negatives and printmaking.
There is access to high quality enlargers and a range of papers, toners and editing equipment, all free of charge for society members. All users must first attend an induction session held by the more experienced users on techniques and good practice.
After that, students are encouraged to make full use of the facility and there's a good number of people in college you can ask if you need help with something. The Dark Room has a library of photography books, a flickr account where students can share their work, and occasional competitions to enter.
As well as being used by King's students, the University Photographic Society often meets at King's, and uses the facilities.
Discussion event with politicians Photo: Nora Rosenberg
King's Politics is a new society that brings top political speakers to King's, giving students an opportunity to listen to, engage with, and challenge some of the most prominent movers and shakers. The society actively encourages students from across Cambridge to engage in stimulating, thought-provoking and exciting events.
For more information, see the King's Politics website.
Singing: King's College Choir
The King's Men on tour in the US
King's College Choir is one of the world's best known male voice choral groups. It is made up of sixteen choristers and fourteen Choral Scholars (six basses, four tenors and four counter-tenors), and sings daily services in the Chapel as well as performing all over the world and doing radio and TV broadcasts. The Choral Scholars also have an a capella close harmony group called The King's Men.
For more information, see the King's College Choir section.
Singing: King's Voices
King's Voices is the College's mixed-voice choir. The group sings Evensong in the Chapel on Mondays, and puts on two major concerts sponsored by King's College Musical Society (KCMS), guest appearances in Ely Cathedral and elsewhere, performances at College dinners, etc. Each year there's a King's Voices tour, usually in the Easter vacation. As well as singing together, the choir is outgoing and sociable as a group. Rehearsals and Evensong are usually followed by a drink in the bar and at least once a term there is a dinner party.
Choral Exhibitions are awarded for students who successfully audition for King's Voices. The standard is high and the repertoire is increasingly diverse and ambitious. All members of King's Voices are entitled to a course of singing lessons each year. For more information, see the King's Voices page.
Student Union - undergraduates
King's College Student Union (KCSU) represents the interests of undergraduate students at King's. The executive committee includes a range of roles such as Welfare & Academic Affairs, Access Officer, Ethnic Minorities, Green & Charities Officer, International Students, Entertainments Officer etc. See Representation and the KCSU website
Student Union - graduates
King's College Graduate Society (KCGS) organises events specifically for graduates: video nights, formal dinner exchanges with other colleges, and trips to our sister college in Oxford (New College) or to London. On Fridays, KCGS sponsors informal graduate drinks. In the summer, 'Grad Drinks' may take place by the River Cam, sometimes combined with a barbecue or late-night punting. See the King's College Graduate Society website.
A good number of subjects at King's have societies in College or occasional seminars, with invited speakers, opportunities to present and discuss student research, and social and networking events bringing undergraduates, graduates and researchers in College together for meals or drinks. These include the King's Law Society, The Biology seminar series, The Maths and Physics society, and the History society. See the relevant subject page for details. All subjects also have societies at university level, bringing people with mutual interests from different Colleges together.
Widening participation / helping with prospective students
There are lots of opportunities for students who want to be involved in widening participation and providing accurate information for prospective students from all backgrounds. The Admissions Office sends emails asking for student volunteers to help with school groups and Open Days. You can be on an undergraduate panel answering questions in front of sixth formers, take tour groups around King's or chat with visitors over (free!) lunch about student life. Or if you enjoy writing, you could write a King's Student Perspectives piece for the website.
The KCSU Access Officers co-ordinate student volunteers for the interview week helpdesk in early December and the Shadowing Scheme where sixth formers stay in King's and 'shadow' a student studying their subject. They also lead the King's Access Bus, a group which visits schools in the Middlesbrough area after Cambridge term has ended for Easter, running sessions for year 10 pupils.
The Women's Dinner is an annual event which brings students, fellows and female alumni together to celebrate the presence of women at King's. The event includes talks and discussion, as well as a formal meal together in Hall.
King's also plays host to many University societies. Events taking place in the college range from talks and seminars with leading politicians and journalists to lessons in belly dancing, salsa, zumba and yoga. King's maintains a proud tradition of involvement in all aspects of University life. The main University website has a full list of clubs and societies.