top of page
76B13207-1A2B-4AF1-B18E-79EAC296EF04.jpeg
Logo_Black No Background.png

About 'The Phil'

The York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir was founded in 1925, bringing together those people with a shared love of music and singing. ‘The Phil', as the choir is affectionately known, will be celebrating its Centenary in 2025 together with partner choirs from the Netherlands, Germany and our own region, in various special events. The choir currently boasts some 60 members with a vast mix of musical backgrounds and ages ranging from 20 to 80.

 

The choir has appeared on national TV performing its Carols in Kirkgate festive concert and has been a BBC Choir of the Year finalist. In the 1970s the Phil represented the UK in the ‘Let the people Sing!’ international competition, with 25 countries competing.  Recently the Phil came first in all three applicable classes of the National Choir Festival, held in Whitby (North Yorkshire) last year. ( 2023) and this year came first in two classes and second in one.

 

Whether your taste is for contemporary or classical, West End or opera, folk song or spiritual, the wide repertoire of music the choir performs will offer both entertainment and pleasure. The choir has had the privilege of performing in renowned venues in the UK and Europe, including the Royal Albert Hall, Castle Howard, the York Castle Museum and York Minster.

 

Logo_Black No Background.png

Musical Director

Berenice Lewis grew up in Leicester where she studied piano and organ with Howard Gregory and received voice training in the Leicestershire Youth Choir.  She began studying at York University in 1989, and became involved in numerous musical groups during and after her student years. 

 

For over 20 years she has been a member of the international touring chamber choir Sine Nomine.  Berry has been Music Director of the York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir since 2000 and also directs the Hull Male Voice Choir.  She holds the post of Director of Music at St. Mary’s Church in Beverley. Berry is a freelance soloist and choral leader, and she teaches singing and piano at Hymers College in Hull.

 

The Phil will be celebrating its Centenary in 2025 together with partner choirs from the Netherlands, Germany and our own region, in various special events. The choir currently boasts some 60 members with a vast mix of musical backgrounds and ages ranging from 20 to 80.

Logo_Black No Background.png

Christmas with 'The Phil'

For many years The Phil has entertained York residents with their Christmas Traditions performances early in December. First performed in the 60s as Carols in Kirkgate ( filmed by the BBC ) before transferring to Merchants Adventurers Hall, then the De Grey Rooms and now at the Citadel Church in Gillygate.

Many audience members return year after year stating Christmas begins with the York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir. The performance is a mixture of traditional and new Carols - readings and the occasional light hearted sketch. All culminating in what is experienced as an uplifting start to the Christmas season. Come and enjoy the wine, a mince pie and the best of choral music with 'The Phil’.

Here in this short film is a snapshot of 2023 Christmas Traditions.

Meet the Musical Team

Logo_White No Background.png
Berry Lewis.jpg

Berenice Lewis

Musical Director

richard8098-edit-and-crop-1.jpg

Richard Kay

Deputy Musical

Director

Graham Kay_headshot.jpg

Graham Kay

Assistant Musical

Director

Helen_Headshot.jpg

Helen Smith

Accompanist

Principals

Logo_White No Background.png
E0289FDF-BF2A-4896-823C-3606DECA77DE.jpeg

Mike Wash

Choir Chairman

E469E753-AFB3-4CA1-9DCB-CC8E30C6D11F.jpeg

Janet Waggott

Choir President

Watch Us Perform

We are lucky enough to perform in a number of historic venues across the country. Head over to our Youtube channel to watch us perform live.

Don't Forget to 'Hit Subscribe'

Listen Here

Listen to 'The Phil' perform by simply clicking play.

Autumn LeavesThe York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir
00:00 / 02:45
An Eriskay Love LiltThe York Philharmonic Male Voice Choir
00:00 / 02:59

Hire Us

Logo_White No Background.png

We most often perform as part of fundraising events, but are happy to sing for private functions such as weddings and anniversaries. Through our music, we help local causes to raise some £15,000 each year. If you would like to book 'The Phil', we'd love to hear more about you and how we might be able to help. Please get in touch with us today.

bottom of page