History

It was the intention of the founder of Westminster Cathedral, Cardinal Vaughan, for the liturgies to be furnished with the finest music available. Fortunately, his vision was shared by the first Master of Music, Sir Richard Terry, whose genius established Westminster Cathedral at the heart of the English choral tradition.

Today, the Choir of Westminster Cathedral is recognised as one of the finest in the world, with its principal focus the daily celebration of the Divine Office and Solemn Mass. Many other types of music are heard at the Cathedral these days, but always of the highest quality, so that the liturgy may truly be a source of inspiration and beauty for those who come to worship.

Since its foundation in 1901, Westminster Cathedral Choir has occupied a unique and enviable position at the forefront of English church music, not least because of the groundbreaking work of Sir Richard Terry, who revived the great works of the English and continental Renaissance composers. The choir's fame grew under Terry as it presented this forgotten music, revolutionising attitudes to the repertoire. Innovation continued under George Malcolm who pioneered the development of the choir's sound along continental lines, resulting in a choir that was truly revolutionary in both what and how it sang. The choir continues these traditions under its present Master of Music, Martin Baker, and it remains the only Catholic Cathedral choir in the world to sing daily Mass and Vespers. More recent holders of the post have included Colin Mawby, Stephen Cleobury, David Hill and James O'Donnell.

 

History
Concerts and Recitals

Latest News

Grand Organ Festival opening recital cancelled

We are very sad to announce that Professor John Butt's opening GOF recital on 20 May has been cancelled, because of the Covid-19 situation. We will assess later in the month whether it looks likely that we can go ahead with Professor Andreas Sieling's recital on 17 June or not, and will keep the website updated to this effect.

GOF 2020 recitalists announced!

We are delighted to announce the line-up of Grand Organ Festival recitalists for 2020! Our seven recitalists come from around the UK and Europe, and we are really looking forward to welcoming them all to Westminster Cathedral. Dates and timings are below, along with ticket details.