Community Engagement

Sacred Music at Notre Dame is at work applying our performance, educational, and theological and pastoral abilities in the greater Notre Dame community. Our students serve as music interns in local churches (Catholic and Protestant) as organist, choir directors, or cantors and our faculty, staff, and graduate students lead the Notre Dame Children’s Choir and children’s Organ Training Program as music educators, vocal coaches, liturgists, and choir directors. All together, we serve 12 local congregations and educate over 300 child choristers and organists weekly.

Sacred Music Academy

Notre Dame Children’s Choir and Organ Training Program

Visit our website to join the Choir.

Student Teaching Children About Music

Founded in 2013, the Notre Dame Children's Choir provides an ecumenical music education that serves over 300 choristers between the ages of one and 18 at no cost to families. The program combines the American children’s community choir model with the English sacred-music cathedral choir. Singers learn the fundamentals of music literacy, vocal technique, and explore their faith in a supportive environment. In addition to regular concerts and weekly liturgies, the program holds an annual community children’s choral festival where children from the Notre Dame region are invited to spend a day with the Notre Dame Children’s Choir in song, fellowship, and performance.

The choir holds weekly classes for infants, toddlers, and parents, and graded choirs for children ages five to 18. The Liturgical Choir leads weekly masses and vespers at the Basilica of the Sacred Heart at Notre Dame and the Church of Our Lady of Loretto at Saint Mary’s College. 

The Organ Training Program is open to choristers of the Choir beginning at age six. These 30-minute lessons are provided at no cost to families. Visit our website to register for the choir and keyboard lessons: sma.nd.edu.

Notre Dame Children's Choir

The Notre Dame Children’s Choir’s advanced ensembles have toured through England and performed in Los Angeles’ Walt Disney Concert Hall, Dallas’ Meyerson Symphony Center, New York City, Philadelphia, Minneapolis, Chicago, and more. The choirs have performed for the Hymn Society of the United States and Canada, the Organ Historical Society, National Pastoral Musicians’ Association, the Indiana Music Education Association, and led a TEDx talk entitled What If Children Were More Than Cute?. The Choir's debut album, O Emmanuel — an Advent and Christmas cantata for jazz trio and choir by composer J.J. Wright — charted at #1 on Billboards’ Chart of Traditional Classical Music. The Choir has appeared on National Public Radio’s Morning Edition, and on the Universal Music Group, Arsis Records, and Dynamic Catholic recording labels. 

Dr. Mark Doerries is the Artistic Director of the Notre Dame Children’s Choir.

How do I request a student to work with me?

To request a student intern at your church, contact Christine Trail, Graduate Studies Coordinator for Sacred Music at Notre Dame (sacredmusic@nd.edu).

Join a Choir


Visit sma.nd.edu to register for the Notre Dame Children’s Choir or audition to be one of our adult Lay Clerks with the NDCC’s Liturgical Choir.Notre Dame Children’s Choir

Repertory and Concordia Choirs

To audition for the Repertory and Concordia Choirs, contact Mark Doerries, Head of the Graduate Choral Conducting Program for Sacred Music at Notre Dame (mdoerries@nd.edu).

See a Show

Sacred Music at Notre Dame faculty and students perform over 50 concerts and liturgies annually in the concert halls of O’Neill Hall of Music and Sacred Music, the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, the Basilica of the Sacred Heart, and in community venues across the region. All events are free and open to the public unless noted otherwise. Visit our events page to view our upcoming events.

Support Sacred Music at Notre Dame

Join our Mailing List