Page last updated at 13:07 GMT, Sunday, 21 March 2010

Record label Decca launches singing nuns contest

Roman Catholic nuns at the Vatican. File photo
Nuns' singing is 'ancient, unchanging and timeless'

A record label is launching a talent hunt aimed at religious orders around the globe in a bid to recruit a troupe of chart-topping nuns.

London-based Decca wants to record an album of plainsong and chant in time for the Pope's UK visit in September.

The idea for the album was inspired by an old recording of singing nuns rediscovered during an office move.

Nuns and religious orders are being asked to contact Decca with examples of their singing within a month.

Decca general manager Mark Wilkinson said: "This is a genuine appeal to find what you could call a 'sister act' for the 21st Century."

Platinum album

Decca executive Tom Lewis, who found the recording as he looked through piles of old records, said: "When you hear the sound of nuns chanting, it's like an immediate escape from the challenges, stresses, pace and noise of modern living.

"You're given a glimpse of another world - a world of peace and calm. This is a sound of something ancient, unchanging and timeless."

Decca is hoping to replicate the success it found with The Monks of Stift Heiligenkreuz, who won a similar contest organised by Mr Lewis in 2008.

The Austrian monks contacted the record label with a YouTube clip of them singing.

Their subsequent album of plainchant singing went platinum.

Print Sponsor

Record label finds singing monks
23 Mar 08 |  Entertainment
Late Pope becomes a singing star
16 Nov 07 |  Entertainment
Priest cancels nun beauty contest
26 Aug 08 |  Europe
Ancient music wins new fans
12 Nov 07 |  Northern Ireland
Monks in modern Britain
25 May 05 |  Magazine
Chill-out CD to calm turkeys
13 Dec 03 |  West Yorkshire
Monks break silence with CD
07 Jul 03 |  Northern Ireland
Nuns take 'tuneful' monk's advice
21 Feb 02 |  England

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific