Nativity Cathedral
Cathedral Church of the Nativity
321 Wyandotte Street • Bethlehem, PA 18015
Phone: 610-865-0727

Cathedral Choirs

Nativity Cathedral
Nativity Cathedral

Music is an integral part of our lives at Nativity Cathedral! It is almost impossible to be involved at, in, or around the Cathedral without experiencing some sort of music, by participating, or listening, or observing, or perhaps learning. There are many opportunities for creating music at this Cathedral, even though we are slowly, carefully, but surely getting back to ‘normal’ post-pandemic.

Cathedral Choir

The most central and visible musical ensemble is the Cathedral Choir which is made up mostly of volunteers from many walks of life. Whether young or seasoned, professional or amateur, or somewhere in between, all of these singers clearly love making music and doing it to the best of their ability. They stay very busy, singing weekly liturgies during the fall and spring terms, and the many additional services that are offered during Advent and Christmas, Holy Week, and Easter. They also sing special annual services or concerts such as the ‘Concert of Remembrance’ in the fall, Advent and Christmas Lessons and Carols, and the beautiful monthly or seasonal services of Evensong and Compline. The basis of repertoire for this Choir is from the rich Anglican tradition for all periods, enhanced by music from other cultures, Spirituals, more contemporary composers, and the occasional commissioned anthem.

Concerts & Summer Residency

The Cathedral Choir has most recently visited and sung in places like the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York, and has collaborated with a number of local choirs for Evensongs and concerts, such as the choir from St. Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., Trinity Episcopal Church in Easton, Pa., the touring choir from the Charter Arts High School in Bethlehem, and the Bethlehem Bach Choir. In August of 2023 (21st-27th), our Choir will be joined by the Choir from St. Stephen’s Pro-Cathedral as they look forward to their next pilgrimage – a summer residency at Exeter Cathedral in England where they will sing daily Evensongs and two liturgies on Sunday.

Choral Scholars

The Cathedral Choir is blessed to have Choral Scholars who are professional staff singers, one singer for each of the voice parts, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass. This program was originally designed to allow students from local colleges the opportunity to sing great sacred music, help out with the Cathedral Choir, and be paid a reasonable stipend. It is indeed still all of that, but we now welcome singers beyond college age to audition for positions as they become available. At present, our wonderful singers are soprano Lauren Smith, alto Lauren Curnow, and bass Ian Murphy. The tenor position is open, and we hope it will be filled in the near future.

Cathedral Choristers

The Cathedral Choristers is a group of young singers in 2nd through 7th grade who have an interest in singing, learning how to sing, and enjoy the idea of creating music. A variety of music is used to teach this group many techniques of singing, as well as the Royal School of Church Music’s Voice for Life curriculum that outlines challenges, incentives, and rewards as the singers progress with their abilities. At the moment we are bouncing back from the pandemic, but we are looking forward to again having a vibrant group of singers in the very near future.

Cathedral Handbell Ringers

Our Cathedral Handbell Ringers is a group of amazing musicians who began rehearsing and ringing in the fall of 2017. For two years these ringers, some of whom had no previous experience with ringing, were doing incredibly well and tremendously enhanced our Christmas and Easter liturgies with the lovely sounds of tin tabulation. As with the Cathedral Choristers, we have been on hiatus since the pandemic, but look forward to resuming rehearsals and playing for liturgies very soon!

For general information about music at the Cathedral, specific rehearsal or concert times, or if you would like to know how to join a choir, please call 610-865-0727.

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