Salzburg Cathedral Music

Salzburg Cathedral music has been a tradition for over 600 years. In 1393, Archbishop Pilgrim founded the Salzburg Cantorey to foster polyphonic church music. In the following centuries, music arrangements for church services were the responsibility of the prince-archbishop’s court musicians. Until the 18th century, these included S. Bernardi, H.I.F. Biber, G. Muffat, J.M. Haydn, Leopold and W.A. Mozart.

In 1841, the ‘Dommusikverein und Mozarteum’ (Cathedral Music Association and Mozarteum) was commissioned to revive church music in Salzburg. In 1880, the School of Music and the Cathedral Music Association became separate entities.

To meet modern requirements, the ‘Freunde der Salzburger Dommusik’ (Friends of Salzburg Cathedral Music) association was set up in 1971. Since then, the association has had members from across the world. We would like to invite you to become a member of this group of sponsors (fax: 0043/662/8047-2349)!

The annual fee of EUR 25.00 / honorary members EUR 75.00 allows members to visit one cathedral concert and all organ matinees free of charge.

Concert in the Salzburg Cathedral dome

With the reestablishment of the Salzburg Cathedral Boys Choir in 1974, a cornerstone was laid to create a place for children’s choirs in the cathedral music landscape. Under the direction of Gerrit Stadlbauer, the cathedral boys and girls sing in several groups with a total of 60 young singers. The Salzburg Cathedral Choir now has 85 volunteer members. The main task of the choir is to accompany the liturgy in the cathedral. The reconstruction of the dome galleries and their organs, which was completed in 1995, established the unique opportunity for performing the works of the old Salzburg masters. The repertoire also includes numerous oratories, pieces for choirs and orchestras, all of which are performed during cathedral choir concerts.

The cathedral choir performs in the Basilica in Aquileia

The soloists are professional musicians and the Salzburg Cathedral Orchestra consists of members from the Mozarteum orchestra. Since 1992, Johannes Bilo has been the concert master of the cathedral choir and Johannes Krall has been the concert master of the chamber orchestra. The ensembles play a broad repertoire of traditional church music. The musicians are also familiar with musical practice in the dome galleries.

Since October 2005, cathedral organist Heribert Metzger has been playing on the cathedral organs. He is the artistic director of the ‘Orgel zu Mittag’ (Midday organ music), organ mediations and improvised concerts for 5 organs.

János Czifra has been the cathedral music director since 1987. In addition to liturgical occasions, he plays with the Salzburg Cathedral Choir in many European cities as well as overseas and regularly assists with the Salzburg Mozart Week, the Salzburg Cultural Days and numerous festivals.