- The group, which is the UK's only full-time professional chamber choir, was targeted by budget cuts shortly before celebrating its 100th anniversary.
- The proposal sparked a backlash, with 140,000 people signing a petition urging the BBC to reverse its decision.
The BBC has paused its decision to close the BBC Singers, after "a number of organisations" came forward to offer alternative funding.
The group, which is the UK's only full-time professional chamber choir, was targeted by budget cuts shortly before celebrating its 100th anniversary.
The proposal sparked a backlash, with 140,000 people signing a petition urging the BBC to reverse its decision.
A temporary reprieve has been granted, as new funding models are explored.
"I am confident that this does secure their future," said Simon Webb, the BBC's head of orchestras and choirs.
"But this has all happened just in the last few days - and what we're looking for now is a little bit of time to quietly, confidentially have conversations with these external partners."
He declined to name the organisations involved but said the choir would still be called the BBC Singers - a name they adopted in 1972, having previously been known as the Wireless Singers, the BBC Chorus, the Variety Chorus and even the Kentucky Minstrels.
The BBC also confirmed that the ensemble would appear at this year's Proms concerts.
Previously, the 20-member choir had been due to close in July, meaning they would miss the summer music festival entirely.
Jonathan Manners, producer and acting co-director of the BBC Singers, said the group were "delighted" at the opportunity for the BBC to work with the Musicians' Union "to try to secure the future of the BBC Singers, which can only be a positive thing".
He added that the Proms would be "incredibly emotional for everyone involved with the BBC Singers, but also in choral music, because I think the last few weeks have shown how people look up to the BBC Singers".
Naomi Pohl, general secretary of the Musicians' Union, said: "The outpouring of love for the BBC Singers and orchestras over the past few weeks has been incredible and we know our members are hugely grateful for all the support they've received."
The corporation's U-turn was received with relief by many in the arts world.
"This is wonderful news," tweeted actor Samuel West, who performed with the BBC Singers at the 2002 Proms. "Thank you @BBC for listening to reason, and music, and beauty."
"Rejoice! What a fabulous way to start a Friday," added former MP Ed Balls. Opera star Jennifer Johnston said she was "cautiously optimistic", while conductor John Rutter thanked "all who raised their voice" in protest.
That included thousands of amateur singers in choirs across the UK and abroad, who joined forces to produce a video pleading for the BBC Singers to be saved.
Choirmaster Sam Evans, who organised the video campaign, also welcomed the latest development.
"It goes to show that when you've got an important message, you can make your voices heard," he said.
"I don't want to fight the BBC," he added. "I feel like the BBC is a family member, but sometimes people in your family take wrong turns and they need to be told that they're making a mistake."
'A class apart'
Audience members watching the choir perform at the BBC's Maida Vale studios on Friday were pleased about the reprieve.
"I sing in chamber choirs and I can tell you that all the chamber choirs and singers that we know in London are absolutely fed up about what was happening because the [BBC] Singers are a class apart," said one, called Wendy.
"[They are] really fantastic singers, and the country doesn't respect really how good they are. I think it might start to now."
The decision to close the BBC Singers was part of a wider programme to downsize the BBC's classical music groups, announced at the start of the month.
It also involves a 20% reduction of roles in the BBC's English orchestras - the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Concert orchestra and the BBC Philharmonic.
The BBC said it was part of a plan that "prioritises quality, agility and impact". According to the latest BBC annual report, £25m was spent on orchestras and performing groups in the last financial year.
The BBC says it needs to find £400m in savings by 2027 because of the two-year freeze in the licence fee imposed by the government.
The move caused consternation across the classical music world. Cellist Julian Lloyd Webber called the cuts "lamentable" and said they called the future of the licence fee into question.
"What has happened to our nation's beloved BBC - the organisation that has been responsible for some of the greatest classical music broadcasts in history?" he said in the Radio Times.
On Thursday, the Telegraph reported that Britain's pre-eminent conductor, Sir Simon Rattle, "may be willing to boycott the BBC Proms" in protest at the cuts.
The Musicians' Union has said it would continue to fight to save roles in other BBC performing groups.
In a statement, the BBC said it would "continue to engage with the Musicians' Union and the other BBC Unions about our proposals on the BBC's English Orchestras".
"The financial challenges are still there," said Mr Webb, "but we've set out our plan… and now we're listening.
"If there are counter-proposals, we're very much listening to that, as we have done with the BBC Singers."