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Working Chanteyman 


What is a Chanteyman? Being a chanteyman was not an official job, rather a chanteyman could be any member of a ship’s crew who led their fellow sailors in work songs to help concentrate and coordinate the work on board a large sailing vessels in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, we use the term ‘chanteyman’ to refer to a person of any/all genders who performs music as part of our shipboard demonstrations.

The working chanteyman position involves entertainment, education, traditional maritime work, and some once-in-a-lifetime experiences - imagine singing a 19th century work song, 40 feet in the air, while furling a sail! As such, this role requires physical fitness, musical ability, comfort with heights, teamwork and leadership skills, and a strong desire to engage and connect with visitors.

This position is a specialized role within the museum’s team of interpreters. "What is an Interpreter?" you ask. Interpreters work with the public in a variety of hands on exhibits, including children and family activity spaces, historic trades, and onboard our historic vessels. While your role will involve specialized training and duties, you’ll also get the chance to work in a variety of interpretive roles throughout your week. Your schedule might involve making hooks in the blacksmith shop, giving talks about local history, or teaching families to play historic games on our village green. Every day is a new adventure!

Acceptance to this program is based on an audition that includes the performance of 2-3 chanties or traditional pieces of instrumental and vocal material, and a trial of a shipboard demonstration work.

Selected applicants will also be expected to begin training on a part-time basis by May 1st.

Position Requirements
  • Must have received or be willing to receive the COVID-19 vaccination and booster by date of hire to be considered. Proof of vaccination will be required.
  • Must be at least eighteen years of age
  • Willingness to work at least one weekend day and on occasional holidays
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Candidates must demonstrate proficiency on at least one traditional sailor’s instrument including, but not limited to, fiddle, banjo, concertina, mandolin, rhythm bones, tin whistle, fife, or button accordion.
  • Candidates must demonstrate an adequate sense of tonality and intonation for a cappella singing, vocal stamina, and voice projection ability.
Full-Time/Part-Time Seasonal  
EOE Statement Mystic Seaport Museum, Inc. is an equal opportunity employer. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and state and federal laws prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. In addition, state and federal laws prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, Veteran's status, age (40 years and over), physical or mental disability, religious affiliation or other protected status. It is our policy to comply fully with these laws and information requested on this application will not be used for any purpose prohibited by law.  
About the Organization Mystic Seaport Museum is the nation's leading maritime museum. Founded in 1929 to gather and preserve the rapidly disappearing artifacts of America's seafaring past, the Museum has grown to become a national center for research and education with the mission to 'inspire an enduring connection to the American maritime experience.'

The Museum's grounds cover 19 acres on the Mystic River in Mystic, CT and include a recreated New England coastal village, a working shipyard, formal exhibit halls, and state-of-the-art artifact storage facilities. The Museum is home to more than 500 historic watercraft, including four National Historic Landmark vessels, most notably the 1841 whaleship Charles W. Morgan, America's oldest commercial ship still in existence.  

This position is currently accepting applications.

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