Formation for Lifelong Praise of God
Mission: to prepare the Sacred Treasury of music and to sing for not only Holy Week and Triduum Liturgies, but for Masses at 9:30 am each Sunday and also with the Archbishop in archdiocesan celebrations. The path of the choir's preparation is structured as formation for lifelong praise of God - including weekly musical, liturgical, and spiritual preparations. Dr. Marie Rubis-Bauer / 402-553-5524 ext 2
Dedicated to the patron of music and musicians, Saint Cecilia Cathedral and the Archdiocese of Omaha host a robust and vigorous music ministry which serve both parish and episcopal liturgies of the Archdiocese. Consisting of a unique partnership between Cathedral and Archdiocese under the auspices of the Saint Cecilia Institute for Sacred Liturgy, Music and the Arts, musicians gather to grow in skill, to rehearse and to pray the liturgy of the hours, culminating in service of the liturgical life of the Mother Church.
At the heart of this ministry is singing in support of and in dialogue with the Assembly of the baptized, the earthly choir, as it lifts up its voice to join with the heavenly choirs in the eternal song of the praise to God the Father. The Cathedral Music Ministry exists within the framework mission of Formation for Lifelong Praise of God, the intentional growth in faith, skill, and musicianship of all of its participants.
In partnership with choral formation is the Cathedral’s landmark Martin Pasi, Op. 14 dual-temperament Pipe Organ, installed in 2003, and serving as the musical foundation of celebrations in the Saint Cecilia Cathedral. As a musical instrument inspiring sacred melodies, as a work of art in wood and metal complementary to the Romanesque architecture, as a practical support for singing, and as a visual and aural metaphor for unity and harmony in the Body of Christ, the Pasi organ stands in the Cathedral 24/7 as a witness to the fidelity of Saint Cecilia to Christ, her Lord. For more information on this already historic instrument see www.pasiorgans.com.
The Martin Pasi Organ
Opus 14 Dual-Temperament
A landmark organ was installed in the Cathedral in 2003 by Pasi Organ builders of Roy, Washington. At the time of its installation, it was one of only four "dual-temperament" organs in the world. he concept developed out of conversations between organ builder Martin Pasi and music director Kevin Vogt. The organ is comprised of fifty-five stops over three manuals and pedal, twenty-nine of which are playable in two temperaments or tuning systems: 1/4-comma meantone and a new well-tempered tuning devised for this instrument by organ builder Kristian Wegscheider of Dresden, Germany. The Saint Cecilia organ is essentially two organs sharing a third of their pipes, and is unique in this respect. The abundance of extra pipes allows the circulating temperament to accommodate much of the Romantic and modern repertories, while retaining enough key color to bring baroque music alive and to lock into tune the mixtures and reeds in the best keys. The million-dollar, five-year project included a month of study in Germany of innovative contemporary and historic instruments, and 35,000 hours of labor. With pipes made of lead and poplar, the freestanding case is of white oak and incorporates pillars, arches and ornaments from the original 1918 organ facade designed by Cathedral architect Kimball. The large, resonant nave of the Cathedral brings the organ into its full glory. It literally sings with seven seconds reverberation when empty and four seconds when full. The creation of a hospitable acoustic for the organ was guided by acoustician Robert Mahoney of Boulder, Colorado.
In 2009 the Saint Cecilia Cathedral Choir, under the direction of Marie Rubis Bauer, celebrated its 150th Anniversary, having been established at the time of the founding of the Cathedral in 1859. The forming of a choir that could sing the Solemn High Mass was a requirement for the establishment of a Cathedral, the Mother Church of a diocese and the Bishop’s Church. Today’s Cathedral Choir aspires to the high quality performance of the Church’s vast and rich treasury of Sacred Liturgical literature spanning more than 10 centuries, including the study and performance of the Church’s core repertoire, Gregorian Chant. The Cathedral Choir consists of mature youth and adults from all walks of life who gather weekly for sung Liturgy of the Hours – the Church’s official universal daily prayer, and for rehearsal culminating in Sunday 9:30 a.m. solemn liturgies of the Cathedral from October through Pentecost. In addition, the Cathedral Choir serves as the core of the Archdiocesan Chorale for Episcopal liturgies with the Archbishop of Omaha. The unique character of an intergenerational choir places youth and adults together in the communal setting – engaging all in “formation for lifelong praise of God.” Every year, the Cathedral Choir sings Requiems by major composers at the Solemnity of All Souls concerts. Additional performances include Saint Cecilia Day concerts and Christmas Eve preludes. Prospective members are encourage to contact Dr. Rubis Bauer during the joining seasons, which usually run in late summer/early fall and after Christmas.
Members of the Schola Caeciliana are selected through audition and serve as section leaders of the Cathedral Choir. The Schola Caeciliana specializes in Renaissance Polyphony and close harmony. Committed to teaching and making excellent music, many of its members serve as music educators in the Omaha Public and Catholic school systems.
The Chorus Angelorum (the Choir of the Angels), which derives its name from the text of the Requiem Mass, serves funerals at the Saint Cecilia Cathedral. The Chorus Angelorum sings the Latin chants of the Requiem Mass, simple Psalmody, and liturgical selections for the Rite of Christian Burial as the core repertoire. Comprised of members who are available during weekday morning liturgies, the group gathers ad hoc. Contact Dr. Rubis Bauer for more information.
The cantor leads the congregational singing in Liturgy to raise the voice in praise of God. Singing the proper chants of the celebration, the Cantor also serves as the Psalmist, proclaiming the word of God. At Saint Cecilia Cathedral, cantors reflect the diverse background of our congregation, some with advanced music training and others without, but all share love of service to the Liturgy and are formed through participation in the Choir. Contact Dr. Rubis Bauer for more information.
Children grades 4 and up from Saint Cecilia Cathedral Parish and Elementary School join with singers from other parishes throughout the Archdiocese of Omaha to sing in the Archdiocesan Youth Choir whose mission serves liturgies both at the Saint Cecilia Cathedral and throughout the metro area. Consisting of an auditioned advanced choir – The Magnificat Treble Choir and the training choir Boy / Girl Choristers, the AYC focuses on formation for worship leadership, singing, and musical skills. This is accomplished through the curriculum of Voice for Life. To join, contact Karen Johnson.