Music is an integral part of the Cathedral Church's rich liturgical life, and is expressed in a variety of ways each Sunday throughout the year.
The Cathedral Church offers a variety of sacred to contemporary worship music that span the ages. A simple way to explain how we worship through music is based on the different Sunday service times. These are noted below.
In addition, All Saints Cathedral hosts a considerable number of musical groups from the Maritimes and further afield who take advantage of the Cathedral’s fine acoustics in presentations of concerts throughout the year. Recitals on the organ are generally given on Wednesdays at noon during the summer. Please visit our Events page for upcoming concerts.
The Cathedral Church is fortunate to have Capella Regalis Men & Boys Choir and its newly formed Girls Choir to share their talents on a regular basis. In particular, this group sings Evensong regularly in the Cathedral’s Sundays at Four music series from September-June and several Capella Regalis members are a part of the Cathedral Choir. We are grateful to Nicholas Halley and Vanessa Halley, Directors of Music for Capella Regalis, for sharing their talent and that of their choirs with us.
The Cathedral Choir assists in worship leadership and comprises an ensemble of professional singers, choral scholars, and volunteer singers, all known as Lay Clerks from the city of Halifax and area. The choir sings at the 11:00 AM Choral Eucharist most Sundays, from September through to early June, and offers services of Evensong, Lessons & Carols, and Readings & Music, as well as concerts.
The Choir’s wide-ranging performing activities are rooted in centuries-old musical traditions and its repertoire ranges from plainsong and Renaissance polyphony to contemporary masterpieces. The Choir has also sung services in a myriad of genres such as “Missa Gaia/Earth Mass” for the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi, and a “Jazz Easter”. In addition to assisting in worship, the Cathedral Choir has played a role in many provincial occasions which have takes place in the Cathedral.
Click here to enjoy the Cathedral Choir Halifax.
Paul Halley, Music Director, is always pleased to hear from singers interested in auditioning for the choir. To learn more about Paul Halley please visit the Cathedral Church Music Staff section found under Our Team.
The Cathedral is always happy to welcome visiting choirs to sing at choral services. The Cathedral Church building is among the most resonant acoustic spaces in Canada, and the organ is one of the finest of the Casavant company’s oeuvre. Please contact the Engagement Leader, Gillian Doucet Campbell, for more information about using this beautiful space. You can reach Gillian here.
Built originally in 1910 by Casavant of St Hyacinthe, Québec, and rebuilt by the British firm of Hill, Norman, and Beard in 1961, the organ acquired a new Casavant console in 2011, one that has 250 memories for its pistons, is MIDI capable, can record performances to play later, and is moveable; some additional stops as well as an antiphonal section for the west end of the Cathedral are prepared for. Consisting of four manuals and seventy-five stops, the organ serves admirably for service-playing and is also an impressive recital instrument, which has been played by many local and international performers. Click here for the current specification list.
Music and hymn accompaniment at the 9:30 a.m. Eucharist are provided by Russ Hall on the piano, joined by various guest musicians from the Cathedral Church and beyond. To learn more about Russ Hall please visit the Cathedral Church Music Staff section found under Our Team.
For the 9:30 am service, special effort is made in hymn selection to facilitate full participation by the congregation. New hymns are gradually introduced. The chant tunes used at this service are from the Evangelical Lutheran Church – a denomination that is in full communion with the Anglican Church of Canada. These tunes, which are easy to sing, are based on tunes used in the Anglican Church of Canada. The intimacy of the physical location of this service and the less formal atmosphere add to the reverence, beauty, and strength of the congregational singing.