In early September 1984 a few people in Milton Keynes came together to sing renaissance music. Two months later on 1 November they sang in their first service at All Saints Church, Lathbury which included the Byrd 4 part Mass.
This small group came to be called Quorum: the group is considered ‘quorate’ when there are enough people present to cover each part, hence the name Quorum. In the late 1980s Quorum started to sing at services regularly at St Mary Magdalene, Willen, an association which continues to this day. By the early 1990s Quorum decided to specialise in singing Renaissance sacred music at church services.
Quorum has sung at many churches in the Milton Keynes/North Bucks area and further afield. These experiences have enabled the choir to develop flexibility and adapt to local circumstances.
In the 1990s Quorum expanded its repertoire to include pieces by renaissance composers from Spain and the new world such as Guerrero, Lobo and Padilla, and rarely sung music by English renaissance composers. In the 2000s Quorum has begun to explore music by contemporary composers including Arvo Part, Vytautas Miskinis and James Macmillan.
When Quorum celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2004 it had begun to sing annually at Cathedrals as a visiting choir, after a gap of nearly 8 years after its first cathedral visit to Southwark Cathedral in 1993. Quorum has sung at Worcester, Gloucester, Hereford, Ely, Norwich, St Edmundsbury, St Albans, Christ Church Oxford, Lincoln, Lichfield, Peterborough, Chichester, Salisbury and Westminster Abbey. The choir has received many compliments about its singing, flexibility and professionalism.
Membership of the group continues to change, with only one of its founder members remaining. There are currently around 20 members.
Since its founding in 1984 Quorum has developed into a fine amateur choir capable of singing music often the preserve of professional choirs or elite amateur choirs. Quorum remains close to its roots continuing to specialise in renaissance sacred music and has expanded its repertoire to include unaccompanied music by contemporary composers.
Quorum has sung in the following churches in Milton Keynes/North Bucks/Bedfordshire area: St Andrews, Great Linford; St Mary Magdalene, Willen; St James, New Bradwell; St George the Martyr, Wolverton; Holy Trinity, Wolverton; Cross and Stable, Downs Barn; St Michael, Walton Hall; St Bede’s, Newport Pagnell; All Saints, Lathbury; St Peter, Stoke Goldington; St Peter, Gayhurst; All Saints, Ravenstone; St Mary, Mursley; St Nicholas, Little Horwood; St Swithin, Swanbourne; St Botolph’s’, Aspley Guise; St James, Husbome Crawley.
Churches further afield include: St John the Baptist, Ightfield; St Peter’s, Brooke; St George’s, Nottingham.
Quorum has contributed to events in many venues including the open day at the Milton Keynes Theatre; St Leonard and St Andrew, Little Linford; Holy Trinity Garrison Church, Windsor; numerous summer fetes and garden parties, weddings in many churches in the Milton Keynes/North Bucks area; carol singing at Mercedes Benz Headquarters in Milton Keynes and concerts in St Mary and St Giles Church Stony Stratford.