ABOUT THE SOCIETY
Founded in 1907, the University of Birmingham Music Society is the oldest society at the University, and is the largest music-making body on campus. We have over 500 members, including students, staff and members of the local community.
The society has two full-sized orchestras, Symphony and Philharmonic, as well as Wind and Brass Bands, Chamber Choirs, a Saxophone Choir, the 200-strong University Chorus, and the award-winning Jazz Orchestra. We also run a Jazz Collective, Chamber Music Network, Flute Choir, Clarinet Choir, and String Orchestra.
Our ensembles perform in the prestigious Elgar Concert Hall, as well in venues such as Birmingham Town Hall and the CBSO Centre. The society's Jazz Orchestra and groups from our Jazz Collective perform at jazz venues across the region.
The University of Birmingham Music Society is part of the overall extra-curricular music programme at the University of Birmingham called University Music, which incorporates ensembles, mentoring, and coaching from both the Music Society and Department of Music.
HONORARY PRESIDENT 2022
Hailing from Ulverston in Cumbria, Jess Gillam is animating the music world with her outstanding talent and infectious personality. She has been forging her own adventurous path since she shot to fame becoming the first saxophonist to reach the finals of BBC Young Musician and the youngest ever soloist to perform at the Last Night of the Proms. Passionate about inspiring and bringing joy to people through music, Jess invites audiences on journeys of musical discovery through her electrifying performances and eclectic programming.
As well as performing around the world, Jess is a presenter on TV and Radio. She became the youngest ever presenter for BBC Radio 3 with the launch of her own weekly show, This Classical Life. The show is in its third year now and in 2020 won the prestigious ARIA Award for Best Specialist Music Show. In July 2021 Jess presented a special live edition of This Classical Life at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall. She has also been a guest presenter for BBC Radio 2 and co-hosted a miniseries for BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme. Keen to explore the creative output of her home county, Jess presented a series of Cumbrian Chats on BBC Radio Cumbria. TV presenting includes the BBC Proms and BBC Young Musician.
Jess is the first ever saxophonist to be signed exclusively to Decca Classics and both of her albums reached No.1 in the UK Classical Music Charts. Her debut album was listed in The Times Top 100 albums of 2019. She has been the recipient of a Classic BRIT Award, has been nominated for The Times Breakthrough Award and was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list 2021 for Services to Music.