Since 1963, Saint Paul's Choir School has formed and educated boys in grades four through eight in the rich music tradition of the Roman Catholic Church. The Choir School seeks to embrace the great cathedral school tradition as it unites a rigorous musical and academic curriculum with our Catholic faith and moral tradition, preparing each student to grow and flourish in a dynamic and changing world.
Music is at the Choir School's foundation and is centered around one of the best Catholic Choirs of Men and Boys in United States. While the music program is diverse and includes many types of performance opportunities, choral singing is the primary focus, principally in service to the liturgies at St. Paul's Church.
The Choir is often represented in media, both television and radio, and has made a number of recordings during its history. Though the Choir sings at the major liturgies of St. Paul's Church, it frequently tours to sing around the U.S. and internationally, including performances with such world-class ensembles as the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Boston Landmarks Orchestra.
The privilege of singing with the choir in the renowned acoustics of St. Paul's is an experience which stays with all of the boys for life. It is the best possible exposure to the great choral and organ music of the Church, and many boys go on to musical and religious callings later in life.
The full Choir of St. Paul's includes professional male altos, tenors and basses and sings on Sunday mornings at eleven, while the boys sing the week-day Masses on their own, performing works by composers such as Rheinberger, Britten, Langlais, and Faure.
Our 4th and 5th grade boys comprise "The Trebles" and sing three times each week, including the weekly Saturday Vigil Mass. When the boys arrive in the 4th grade, they are known as "probationers" until they are "invested" at a ceremony each spring, marking their full acceptance into the Choir School. Once a boy's voice changes, he enters the Schola Cantorum; they sing several times each month and rehearse each week.
The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School 'Christmas in Harvard Square'
PBS R&E Feature on Boys of St. Paul's Choir School
The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School have an exciting season planned this fall and into the holidays with the release of their first international recording for Decca/AimHigher Recordings/UMC. Christmas in Harvard Square was just released on October 7, and now Boston television station WGBH is confirmed to be the PBS presenting station of their one hour television special, "Christmas in Harvard Square," premiering on November 28 immediately following Thanksgiving at the official kick-off of the Christmas season. The show will subsequently air throughout the holiday season on WGBH and additional stations to be announced, with additional interviews to be filmed at the WGBH studios with the boys and the choir's Musical Director, Mr. John Robinson.
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Since 1963, Saint Paul's Choir School in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has formed and educated boys in grades four through eight in the rich music tradition of the Roman Catholic Church. Their new album 'Christmas in Harvard Square' features 19 classic Christmas songs of both traditional and contemporary arrangements, including original versions by Director of Music John Robinson.
Selected as one of WFMT: Chicago / 'Best Christmas Recordings Of 2014'
St. Paul's is the only Roman Catholic boys choir school in the United States, as amazing as that sounds. It's fortunate that it is a good one-having just celebrated their 50th anniversary, the choir is in stellar shape as this superb recording demonstrates. This is an old school, no-nonsense, seriously committed and flawlessly performed program of great substance, exquisite nuance, and a palpably emotional tone that could only come from true believers in the wonders of the Nativity season. Director of Music John Robinson has a lot of the English choral training in his blood, and imbues the choir with the discipline and authority of that tradition while never once betraying his own Catholic heritage in the selection-and even composition-of the pieces. This easily ranks as one of the best Christmas discs of the year, and one that I will listen to many times. The acoustics are wonderful, captured in vibrant fullness at the Church of St. Paul in Cambridge Mass.
It's 8 a.m. in Harvard Square, and John Robinson is leading a dozen choristers in an early-morning rehearsal. His comments and questions are totally professional. "Think about how much air is needed." "The dangers are going flat plus mutation of vowel." "What do you think, more or less vibrato?"
The singers are, however, professional in achievement only. They are the Boys of St. Paul's Choir School, members of the sole Roman Catholic boys' choir school in America. Their repertoire includes Renaissance polyphony by Victoria and Palestrina. They have sung Mahler with Leonard Bernstein; they've sung with the BSO; they've performed for Pope Francis in Vatican Square. Their debut CD, "Christmas in Harvard Square," came out in October from Decca/AimHigher Recordings, and a one-hour documentary about the making of the CD, also titled "Christmas in Harvard Square," will air Friday at 7 p.m. on WGBX 44.
READ THE FULL Boston Globe ARTICLE
The Boys of St. Paul's Choir, in partnership with the Harvard Square Business Association, warmly invite you to an intimate holiday concert and tree lighting ceremony in Winthrop Park on November 15th at 6:30pm. The boys will be kicking off the performance at 6pm with a sidewalk procession from St. Paul's Church, down Massachusetts Avenue and onward to Winthrop Park – at the intersection of JFK & Mt. Auburn Street. Upon their arrival in the park, they will be met by, Brian O'Donovan, host of WGBH's "A Celtic Sojourn", who will be introducing the choir.
The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School welcome the holiday season with their heartfelt and festive debut album, currently holding the #2 spot on Billboard's Classical Traditional Chart. Their international debut Christmas In Harvard Square has held steady in the Top 5 on the chart since its release on October 7.
The release of Christmas in Harvard Square for Decca/AimHigher Recordings/UMC kicks off an exciting season planned for the boys which includes a one hour PBS television special "Christmas in Harvard Square," premiering November 28 on WGBH in Boston. The show will subsequently air throughout the season on additional stations.
St. Paul's Choir School also has a long-standing tradition of marking the holidays with an annual Christmas concert that has become such a must-see event they have now added a second date, with the shows confirmed for December 7 and December 14 at St. Paul's in Harvard Square.
The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School possess an impressive pedigree – they have performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Leonard Bernstein, on the legendary stage of Carnegie Hall, in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican for Pope Francis, and countless Boston Red Sox and Celtics games. Consisting of singers who are both artistically and technically highly developed, it may be surprising to discover that their members are comprised of boys ranging from Grades 4 through 8. The Boys of St. Paul's Choir School embody an all-inclusive, endearingly talented group of truly talented young individuals.
Choirmaster Mr. John Robinson thoughtfully hand-picked the repertoire for Christmas in Harvard Square which includes pristine renditions of classics including "O Come All Ye Faithful," "Hark the Herald Angels Sing," and "Angels We Have Heard," among others. The album was produced by Grammy Award-winning Blanton Alspaugh.
Having just celebrated their 50th anniversary, Saint Paul's Choir School in Cambridge, Massachusetts strives to engage young men in the development of their intellectual and musical talents. The academy has been described not as a school with a choir, but as a choir with a school. Located in the heart of Harvard Square, the school has had a large impact within the Harvard community. They identify and accept boys from the greater Boston area as well as the entire U.S. who are musically talented and academically qualified, with the goal of developing the diverse musical talents of each boy.
As with all our Harvard Square events, this concert is free and open to the public.