The Cathedral Choirs
The Choir of Auckland Cathedral
Singing three choral services per week during term time,the Choir of Holy Trinity Cathedral is, in terms of public performances, the busiest in the city.
Comprising some twenty members, including a high proportion of students and young adults, this dynamic and flexible ensemble embraces the widest possible repertoire of sacred music, from Gregorian Chant, European renaissance polyphony and music written for the Anglican Church, through to contemporary religious work from New Zealand and beyond. Under its director, Michael Stoddart, the choir enjoys a fine reputation in the city and further afield, and is often used for civic and national events.
Though the choir works hard and performs to a very high standard within a tight schedule, it is a friendly and sociable group, with a strong sense of Music. Michael Stoddart is always pleased to meet potential choristers for an informal chat about membership and auditions. Click here to send him an email. Generous scholarships are often available to assist young people embarking on a course of musical study. Click here to find out more about scholarships.
Music has always played a vital role in the spiritual life of the Cathedral; under the leadership of Professor Peter Godfrey, Director of Music from 1958 to 1974, the choir enjoyed strong links with Auckland University and achieved an international reputation for excellence. The scope and outlook of the choir was developed subsequently by successive directors, Anthony Jennings and James Tibbles. In recent times, the choir has participated in many of the high profile occasions that have been hosted at the Cathedral, notably, visits of members of the Royal Family, the state funerals for Sir Edmund Hillary and Sir Paul Reeves, and the 15th Anglican Consultative Council, held in Auckland in 2012. The choir has been broadcast many times on national TV and Radio, most recently on Easter Day 2015. Click here to listen to the service and Click here for the Cathedral's page on YouTube..
The Cathedral Choristers
The Cathedral Choristers are thirty girls and boys aged 8-14 drawn from around the city. Meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school, the choir sings at Choral Evensong during term time, as well as performing at special services and concerts in the Cathedral and beyond. In recent times, the choir has sung in Bach's St Matthew Passion in the Town Hall, and performed with the Manukau Symphony Orchestra, and with Will Martin. The choristers receive an excellent musical training; not only in practical skills such as voice production and sight reading, but also in the theory of music, and many take the opportunity of receiving private tuition through The Cathedral Music School. The Director of Music is always pleased to meet potential choristers and their parents for an informal chat about membership and auditions. Click here to send him an email.
Trinity Voices is a small ensemble of singers from within the Cathedral Choir, formed initially to provide a singers for weddings and funerals, as required from time to time, singing one or two voices per part. Recently the group gave a performance of Tallis's Lamentations, as part of the Cathedrals' Holy Week observance.
St. Marys Singers
St Mary's Singers (Director: Anita Banbury) is a mixed voice, auditioned choir which sings at services in the Cathedral and elsewhere when the Cathedral Choir is not available, normally during the school holidays, following a short period of rehearsal.
Directors of Music at Holy Trinity Cathedral
Professor Peter Godfrey
Peter de Blois
Michael Stoddart, Holy Trinity Cathedral Director of Music
Michael was an Organ Scholar at Magdalen College, Oxford. Here he played a full part in Oxford musical life both as an organist, playing daily choral evensong, and as a singer deputising at Christ Church and New College. Returning to London, he was appointed organist and choirmaster of St Peter's Streatham, where he directed a mixed choir and was able to enjoy playing a four-manual Hill instrument, and sang as a deputy lay clerk at St Paul's Cathedral.
He then moved to Paris for an extended period of organ study at the Paris Conservatoire with Susan Landale. He was appointed organist and then choirmaster of St George's Church and was involved in the musical life of Evreux Cathedral, where he initiated a children's choir. He also played a part in plans for a new organ in the Cathedral. He then directed the Choeur d'Enfants at the Parisian church of St Louis en l'Ile and spent two years as assistant organist at the American Cathedral in Paris.
Returning to the UK in 2004, he was appointed Organist and Director of Music at St Mary's Portsea and Musical Director of the St Mary's Music Foundation where he greatly expanded the children's choir. He was also Assistant Sub-Organist at Portsmouth Cathedral and gained his FRCO. As a deputy lay clerk he frequently sang with the choirs of Winchester, Chichester and Portsmouth cathedrals.
In 2009 Michael was appointed Director of Music at St Nicholas' Cathedral, Newcastle. There he trained the Cathedral choirs of boys, girls and adults which sang for six regular weekly services, and had overall responsibility for all aspects of music-making in the cathedral.
Michael is married to Elisabeth, who is a language teacher and also a musician and they have four daughters.
Listen to Our Choir
Click here for the choir's recent Easter Day Broadcast
"Here is the Little Door"
"Emendemus in Melius"