There are four choirs currently in residence at Wellington Cathedral:
Director: Michael Stewart
The Choir of Wellington Cathedral of St Paul is an auditioned volunteer adult choir of 25 – 28 mixed voices. It has developed a reputation as one of the finest ensembles of its kind in Australasia. The choir has toured to Australia; Fiji; England and Ireland (2002); and England and Paris (2008).
In addition to singing regular services at the Cathedral, the choir performs frequently in concerts and radio and television broadcasts. The national broadcaster, TV1, broadcast the 2010 Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols three times on Christmas Day. Other highlights in recent years include the Christmas Midnight Mass (2004), the Tomb of an Unknown Warrior Ceremonies (2004), the service commemorating the 60th Anniversary of VP Day (2005) and Nine Lessons and Carols (2008). In 2009 the service of Nine Lessons and Carols was recorded by Radio New Zealand Concert for future broadcast. For many years the Cathedral Choir has sung on the live broadcast from the National War Memorial on ANZAC Day. Award winning young Kiwi, Andrew Baldwin, served as Composer-in-Residence at the Cathedral from 2007-2009.
In 2010 the Choir worked with Katherine Dienes-Williams, Director of Music, Guildford Cathedral UK; Dr Richard Marlow, Fellow in Music, Trinity College Cambridge; and Philip Scriven, Director of Music, Lichfield Cathedral. In December the Choir and Choristers of the Cathedral sang with the NZSO in a Christmas concert.
In 2011 the Choir again worked with Dr Richard Marlow who conducted a programme including 2 Bach motets in early April
The Cathedral Consort, drawn from the Cathedral Choir, is a group of 12-14 singers formed to perform Renaissance repertoire in the Cathedral. The group sings in both 2 voices per part and 1 voice per part formats allowing singers to better hear one another and for the polyphonic textures to be heard more clearly than with a larger group of singers. Recently the group performed at the City Gallery in a programme of Tallis and Byrd to follow the Janet Cardiff installation Spem in alium.
Director: Michael Stewart
The Cathedral Choristers number up to 24 boys and girls aged between 8 and 15. The choir rehearses twice a week, on Tuesdays and on Thursdays (before singing Evensong). The Choristers lead the Sunday Choral Eucharist or Choral Evensong once a month.
Each young person learns to work as part of a team and to take responsibility for his or her own performance. Choristers are treated as young professionals and the Cathedral treble programme represents one of the finest musical educations available to young people in New Zealand. The choristers use a ribbon training scheme which provides both musical education and Christian training.
The Choristers are often called on to sing in professional engagements, and have appeared with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and Orchestra Wellington.
The Director of Music, Michael Stewart, is currently looking for new choristers for 2014. Please make contact with him on [email protected] if you are interested in finding out more.
Director: Richard Apperley
The Children’s Choir is aimed at children aged between 5 – 8. The choir is directed by Richard Apperley, Assistant Director of Music at the cathedral, and serves as a training ground for those wishing to become members of the Cathedral Choristers. Singers learn essential vocal technique, music theory and experience the joy and fun of singing as part of a choir through both games and repertoire.
The choir rehearses during term time on Thursday afternoons from 3.30 – 4.30pm, and once a month sings a service with the Cathedral Choristers. There is no cost or audition to be a member of the choir.
Please contact Richard Apperley for further information about the choir by emailing [email protected]
St. Paul’s Chorale
St. Paul’s Chorale is a voluntary auditioned adult choir which sings in the Cathedral from time to time. Repertoire consists of parish to Cathedral level music that can be prepared in a modest amount of rehearsal time. Prospective singers are given a short range test before entry.