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Music plays an important role in the life of St John’s Cathedral. There are five choirs, who lead us in worship each Sunday of the year (except in January), and at additional services during the week. To download the latest music list, please click here.

At the centre of our music programme is the Cathedral Choir, which sings at most of our choral services. The treble line is formed of around 18 to 20 boy choristers, who receive a half scholarship to the Anglican Church Grammar School (‘Churchie’), and benefit from a musical training that is second to none. The lower parts are sung by adult Lay Clerks, who come from a variety of occupations.

For more information about our various choirs, and to read more about chorister opportunities, please click here.


Music for everyone

St John’s Cathedral, with its fine organ, inspiring architecture, and generous acoustic, is one of the most thrilling places in the country to hear organ music. Each year, we host an Organ Recital Series, featuring various international, interstate, and local performers.

On the first Thursday of every month, our free morning concert at 11.00am delivers music to stimulate many tastes. Whether strings or woodwind, voice, piano or percussion, the performances from Queensland Conservatorium and The University of Queensland are always immersive and transformative. The busy city streetscape outside may as well be in another world.

Our Cathedral also plays host to many evening events – concerts, recitals and performances across a range of musical genres – featuring a range of artists and ensembles, local and international.

News of concert events appears in the monthly CCN (Cathedral Community News) and on our LED sign on the Ann Street footpath, as well as on the homepage of this website.


St John’s Cathedral organ

Between 1906 and 1910 the distinguished UK firm Norman and Beard was engaged to build the Cathedral organ. This (initially, 50-stop) instrument was to be accommodated in a much larger chamber designed by John Pearson, the son of the Cathedral’s late architect.

Financial constraints at the time, as well as the ongoing evolution of the Cathedral’s construction during its first two stages, meant that compromises, both musical and architectural, had to be made. Without the support of many private donors, the full majesty of the organ would not have been realised – indeed, it was not properly realised until its major rebuild during the 1970s under then-Organist and Master of the Choristers, Robert Boughen.

Today, beneath our soaring vaulted ceilings, the immense soundscape of our Cathedral organ may be experienced to truly spine-tingling effect.

For more information, please click here.


St John’s Cathedral has a Choral Music Trust account, which was established to build a fund to support the considerable annual costs of Choral Music at the Cathedral.

Do you enjoy the music our choirs share within the liturgies?

Our Choral Music Trust invites you to consider a donation to the Trust on a one-off or regular basis. Maybe you might like to contribute to the Trust to support one of the singers?

If you would like to explore the possibilities, please email the Trust Liaison, Dr Helen Lancaster.

Donations of $2 or more to the Choral Music Trust are tax-deductible.

Choral music by contemporary composers is regularly showcased at St John’s Cathedral, and both the Cathedral Choir and the Cathedral Chamber Choir have commissioned and premiered liturgical works by some of Australia’s leading composers. The Brisbane Contemporary Church Music Festival (BCCMF) is an established feature of our musical calendar, held over two weekends each August. It features a colourful array of performers and performances. Standalone concerts are deftly interwoven with special choral and musical accents to regular services, showcasing the best of contemporary choral and organ music for the liturgy.

More information

Watch for updates in the monthly CCN (Cathedral Community News), as well as on our Ann Street signage and this website. You can also find out more in our regular Service Notes and on our Facebook and other social media feeds.

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