Sacred Music

Sacred Music at the Cathedral of Saint Paul is united in worship around our Archbishop and focused on our house of prayer, which represents and realizes a Roman Catholic presence in our parish, Archdiocese, and community. Through the celebration of the sacraments, the preaching of God's Word, worship, and shared mission, we offer sacred music to redeem the world. 

The Cathedral Choirs exist through the mandate of the Roman Catholic liturgical documents to lead and illuminate prayer through profound excellence in musical expression, through the understanding and proclamation of sacred texts, and through a loving desire to respect and enhance the rich liturgical heritage of our faith.

We welcome you to become involved the community of sacred music at the Cathedral of Saint Paul and invite you to participate through the divine worship and ministry of sacred music. 

Lawrence W. Lawyer, Acting Director of Sacred Music

Music and the Arts

View the season's schedule of musical performances

Cathedral Choir

The Cathedral Choir is the principal liturgical choir at the Cathedral of Saint Paul. An ensemble of 35 to 40 auditioned professional and volunteer musicians, the Choir sings for about 40 liturgies in addition to several concerts per year. Between September and May, they can be heard most Sundays at the 10:00 a.m. Sunday Mass and on Relevant Radio 1330 AM, The Cathedral Choir sings music ranging from Gregorian chant to Renaissance polyphony to music of contemporary composers. The Cathedral Choir rehearses on Wednesdays from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Cathedral Choir School 

Choir Schools of historically proven ability for high-quality musical training remain important for the renewed Roman Catholic liturgy. The Church’s rich legacy of musical education of children and youth extends back to the early medieval times. The musical and spiritual formation of the young remains critically important to the life of the Church. Our program of music education is part of the overall curriculum of the religious education of children, fostering their love of Christ and understanding of our Catholic faith.

The Cathedral Choir School, under the direction of Ms. Jayne Windnagel, begins September 10, 2014 and is organized into 2 levels.  The levels are as follows:
  • Saint Thomas Choristers: First (age 6 by October) through Third Grade.  Rehearse on Wednesdays from 4:00 to 5:10 p.m.
  • Saint Cecilia (girls) and Saint Gregory (boys) Choristers: Fourth grade through High School. Must be able to match pitch. Rehearse Wednesdays from 4:00 to 5:10 p.m. Sing Mass immediately following rehearsal from 5:15 to 6:00 p.m.
Annual Registration Fee: $50 for the first child enrolled, $25 for each additional child enrolled.  Payment is due with registration.  (Checks payable to Cathedral of St. Paul.)

Parents with questions are encouraged to send inquiries via email.  

Schola Cantorum

The Schola Cantorum is the resident professional choral ensemble of the Cathedral. Through their primary ministry as support of the Cathedral and Archdiocesan choirs, the Schola Cantorum specializes in offering Gregorian chant and Renaissance polyphony including many of the Latin Masses composed for particular solemnities and feast days throughout the liturgical year.

Restoring the Cathedral Organs

Read about the Cathedral of Saint Paul's historic organs. Watch videos of their inner workings and demonstrations of the beautiful music with which they fill the Cathedral. Learn more about the Cathedral Heritage Foundation's efforts to raise money to maintain these grand instruments.

Cathedral CD Recordings

A CD recording of Christmas music sung by the Cathedral Choir, “In Excelsis Gloria,” is available for purchase.

“Espressivo,” a CD of music for violin and organ, with violinist Michal Sobieski and former Director of Music James Biery, was recorded at the Cathedral and released in 2008. 

About the Sacred Music Staff

Lawrence W. Lawyer, Associate Director of Sacred Music, has been on the Cathedral sacred music staff since 2006. A Pi Kappa Lambda graduate of Millikin University and Scarritt Graduate School, he holds degrees in sacred music from both institutions. A church organist from the age of 11, he began his ministry playing for daily Masses celebrated with his schoolmates. He also serves parishes and religious communities of the metropolitan area as staff organist and festival organist for jubilees. Beginning with his appointment by the future Raymond Cardinal Burke as Director of Music at the Cathedral of Saint Joseph the Workman in La Crosse, he has since remained in the upper Midwest, leading a number of well-regarded programs for the Church, serving as a member of two diocesan liturgical commissions, and teaching, adjudicating, and presenting workshops in Roman Catholic liturgy and music. As a concert organist, he has given recitals at churches and cathedrals throughout the United States, including the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. He has been a member of the Conference of Roman Catholic Cathedral Musicians since 1986, and holds numerous professional memberships, including the American Guild of Organists and National Association of Pastoral Musicians.

Dr. Sean Vogt is the Choirmaster at the Cathedral of Saint Paul and Artistic Director & Conductor of the Apollo Male Chorus (The Apollo Club). He also serves as Minnesota’s Repertoire & Standards Chair: Music and Worship for the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA). Sean holds a master’s and doctoral degree in choral conducting from the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University and Michigan State University respectively. He has served as the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Steiner Chorale, a semi-professional chorus, Assistant Conductor of the MSU Chorale and sabbatical professor for the 100-voice MSU Men’s Glee Club. He is a frequent adjudicator, clinician, and guest conductor at multiple choral festivals. As an enthusiastic proponent of choral conducting pedagogy, Dr. Vogt has led conducting masterclasses at several institutions, including California State University San Bernardino, South Dakota State University, and Yale University.
Having conducted many major works for chorus and orchestra, Vogt has also been one of the featured conductors at the Oregon Bach Festival where he worked closely with Helmuth Rilling, conductor of the International Bach Academy in Stuttgart, Germany, and conducted the all-professional chorus and orchestra in three public performances. He has also prepared choirs for early music specialist, Paul McCreesh, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and the former associate conductor of the New York Philharmonic, Xian Zhang.
His experience also includes over twenty years in church music. He has served as Iowa’s Repertoire and Standards Chair: Music and Worship for the American Choral Directors Association, and faculty member for the National Leadership Program for Musicians (LPM) serving small congregations.
In addition to degrees in choral conducting, Vogt worked on a doctorate in organ at the University of Iowa, holds a diploma in organ from the Haarlem Internationale Zomeracademie voor Organisten (The Netherlands), and a master’s degree in organ from Southern Methodist University. Along with several organ dedications, he has performed at several national and international venues, as well as national conventions for the NCCO and ACDA, and as a collaborative artist with vocalists, instrumentalists, and choirs. 
Sean Vogt currently coaches with Dr. Stephen Hamilton, Music Director emeritus at the Church of the Holy Trinity (Episcopal) in New York City.
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