The Gift of Music at St Andrew’s Cathedral School

Gift of Music

At St Andrew’s Cathedral School music is central to the life of our school since our beginnings as a choir school in 1885.

At our school our commitment to developing musical talent works hand in hand with our pursuit of academic excellence in the context of a wholistic education. Our Christian vision of the world sees music as a gift, something that points to the existence of something else: something of profound beauty and transcendence beyond the here and now. We believe music frees us: helping us to look beyond ourselves in serving others who experience our performances.

St Andrews Music

“Music fires complex and widespread activity in many areas of the brain. It brings joy, enhancing wellbeing. I love that music unites us as we lose ourselves in it, and it brings diverse students together,” said Mr Ben Milis, Acting Head of Music in the Junior School.

But making music is also a challenge.

“There are no shortcuts in the development of genuine expertise,” said Dr Christian Watson, Director of Performing Arts at the School. “In a world where young people can be distracted by numerous devices that offer immediate gratification, music asks for the opposite—hours of deliberate, determined practice to identify challenges and work to correct them. But this asks for courage. Stepping onto the stage isn’t easy. That’s where the teaching of character comes into it.”

Strong relationships are so important. “Our focus is on bringing our students into a community bound to excellence,” Dr Watson said. “Our teachers and tutors have the perfect balance of outstanding educational qualifications as well as professional experience as performers. They’re also committed to investing in long term relationships—we know that the support of a devoted and expert mentor is essential in any successful music programme.”

Gift of Music

The school starts early, with a comprehensive Junior music programme. “Our students get to experience the wonder and challenge of learning an instrument for the first time, joining a choral group or band or ensemble, and we tailor our programmes to the needs and interests of our children,” said Mr Milis.

“Our city location also opens up a world of performance possibilities in world class venues,” said Dr Watson. “This ranges from carols in the Queen Victoria building, to recitals in our newly renovated Chapter House or a performance in the beautiful surrounds of St Andrew’s Cathedral or Sydney Town Hall.”

St Andrews students have access to international and national music tours, create musical theatre performances in professional venues, and benefit from working with an inhouse recording engineer. In the senior years the School offers both the IB and HSC as options, and a number of the School’s talented students have gone on to study at the most prestigious national and international tertiary performance programs,

Music and academic scholarship applications are open for students in Years 4-11 in 2023.

Other scholarships include:

• 2023 Academic (Years 5, 6, 7 and 11)

• 2022 Cathedral Choir (Years 3 boys)

• 2023 Indigenous (from Kindergarten)

To find out more about our music program and scholarships visit or contact our enrolments department at or call 02 9286 9664.


Located in the heart of Sydney’s CBD, St Andrew’s Cathedral School is an innovative, co-educational day school, providing students from […]

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