The Cathedral Music Ministry has a place for every musician, from the beginner to the experienced professional. Praise to God is given with all kinds of music and styles of prayer and as a diverse cathedral community, our ministry embraces everything that serves our liturgies and other events well. Because we are a cathedral parish, our service is not just to the parish but to the whole diocese, and so a cathedral parish musician has many options for the kind and amount of participation.
I'm a singer who would love to get involved. What are my options?
Most singers find it best to sing with others and enjoy the beauty of "part" singing, the community of a small ensemble and the wonderful prayer that sung liturgy offers. There are five parish choirs that rehearse and sing at weekend Masses regularly, as well as three Diocesan choirs. Each choir sings at a particular Mass each Sunday and differs slightly in the level of ability required to be comfortable with the music. There is certainly at least one choir that will benefit from your involvement!
Cantor ministry is open to singers who are able to sing alone, project confidence and can effectively lead a congregation in singing of the psalm of the day, the Gospel acclamation and other parts of the Mass. Cantor ministry requires an audition and you will find it helpful to be able to read music.
I am proficient on an instrument. How can I participate?
There is an opportunity for almost every common instrument to enhance our worship. Instrumentalists are welcome at all liturgies. Organists and pianists are normally the foundational leading instruments for liturgy, and a high level of proficiency is required. Students of these instruments are welcome to learn how to use their skills in the context of liturgy! Guitars, woodwinds, brass, strings and percussion are commonly used in our worship, as well, and players are encouraged to participate as often as possible. See the Parish Music Ministry page for more information.
I'm not Catholic. Does that matter?
Our music ministry welcomes all who love to sing or play for the Catholic liturgy. Very often, those from other faith traditions have valuable experience to offer!
What Concerts are performed at the Cathedral?
The Cathedral Concerts season generally runs from September to May and includes five “pillar” concerts (organ, symphony, choral, Choir of Men and Boys and Christmas Brass) and then a varying number of others that involve both local and international artists. Most concerts are free, with donations accepted at the door.
What instruments are in the Cathedral and when can I hear them?
In 2002, LeTourneau of Quebec, Canada, installed three organs in the cathedral church and chapel. There are 94 ranks of pipes in the main church and a lovely 14-rank tracker organ in the chapel.
The bells of Saint Andrew were refurbished in 2000 by the Verdun Bell Company. The ten bells have a beautiful sound and an interesting history. Check out the Cathedral Bells page to listen and learn about this wonderful treasure.
Our cathedral church is fortunate to have a Bösendorfer Imperial Grand piano (97 keys, not 88!). This beautiful instrument is featured in every liturgy and many concerts. You can read about the Imperial Grand here.
Please visit our Cathedral Concerts page for organ recitals and other performances that will include these instruments.
I'm getting married at the Cathedral. How do I begin planning my music?
Be sure to visit the Cathedral’s Marriage Page, which gives you all the information you need to get started with the entire process. Then, contact Nick Palmer to get the date on his calendar and to set up a meeting to discuss music. He will send you a link to a Google form that guides you through the liturgy and lays out various choices for music and musicians to consider. This form is especially useful if you live out of town and need to do most of your planning from your home.
I would like to learn to read music or sing better. Do you offer training?
Yes! See the Parish Music Ministry page for information on when sessions meet for sight-singing (learning to read music) and for group vocal coaching. Generally, these are intended for those who are participating in music ministry, but you are welcome to join in and learn about music and about your voice.
I don't sing or play an instrument. Is there another way I can help?
Yes! We need librarians, assistants at concerts for greeting audience members as they arrive, food talent for setting up small receptions for musicians and artists, graphic artists, and general help to distribute concert materials and handle mailings. See our volunteering page or contact Nick Palmer to see how you can help.