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Overview of Musical Events on Temple Square

[Photo of Mormon Tabernacle Choir]
Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Organ

Ongoing musical events on Temple Square include daily organ recitals featuring the Mormon Tabernacle organ, as well as the Thursday evening rehearsal and Sunday morning broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Other performances in the Tabernacle and the Assembly Hall are sponsored by the Temple Square Concert Series. There is no admission charge to any events on Temple Square. Tickets are generally not required, except for major performances featuring the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Admission to the daily organ recitals and to the Thursday evening rehearsals is open to people of all ages; admission to all other musical events is limited to those eight years of age and older. Up-to-date recorded information regarding all musical events on Temple Square can be found by calling 1-800-537-9703.

In addition, there are occasional special musical events which do not fall under the umbrella of any of the preceding, such as the American Classic Organ Symposia held in 1989 and 1999. 

Daily Organ Recitals

The Salt Lake Tabernacle is currently closed due to construction until at least the summer of 2006. For the duration of the construction project, the daily organ recitals will take place in the new Conference Center located just across the street from the Tabernacle in the block directly north of Temple Square. The organ in the Conference Center was completed in 2003 and was built by Schoenstein & Co. of San Francisco.

The organ recitals in the Conference Center are offered free of charge every day of the year, holidays included. Performances take place Mondays through Saturdays at 12:05 p.m., and Sundays at 2:05 p.m. Admission is free and open to all people of all ages. Those attending should come to door #15 of the Conference Center, on the south side of the building. During the winter and spring 2005 season, recitals will not be held on Saturday, April 2nd and Sunday, April 3rd.

The summer schedule, which begins on Monday, May 30th and ends on Monday, September 5th, is as follows: Mondays through Saturdays, performances are at 12:05 and 2:05 p.m.; on Sundays, one performance is given at 2:05 p.m.

For an up-to-date listing of recitals and performers in the daily recital series, click here.

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Mormon Tabernacle Choir Rehearsals and Broadcast

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir traces its roots to the then-nameless choir which was formed by the Mormon pioneers in August 1847, one month after their arrival in the Salt Lake Valley. The choir's first network radio program was broadcast on July 15, 1929. It is now said to be the the longest continuously running network radio broadcast in the world. The weekly half-hour radio and television program, "Music and the Spoken Word," emanates from the Tabernacle nearly every Sunday morning at 9:30 a.m. (Exceptions occur when the choir is on tour, or on General Conference weekends, when the broadcast emanates from the Conference Center.) The broadcast is open to the public, although children under the age of eight are not allowed. Admission is free, with no tickets required. The doors open at approximately 8:30 a.m., and audience members must be in their seats by no later than 9:15 a.m. For further information, call (801) 240-3221, or send e-mail by clicking here.  (Be sure to remove the spamguard from the address before sending.)

The choir also rehearses most Thursday evenings in the Tabernacle in preparation for the Sunday morning broadcast. These rehearsals are open to the public with no age restrictions and no admission charge. The doors open at 8:00 p.m., and audience members may come and go as they please until the rehearsal concludes at 9:30 p.m.

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Temple Square Concert Series

The Temple Square Concert Series was inaugurated in 1979 and has quickly become a Salt Lake City institution. The series presents a wide variety of performers, including orchestras, choirs, chamber ensembles, solo vocalists, and solo instrumentalists. Concerts take place most Friday and Saturday evenings, as well as occasional weekday nights. Most performances are held in the Assembly Hall, which is directly south of the Tabernacle. Guest organists perform either on the Tabernacle organ or on the Assembly Hall organ or, occasionally, on both instruments (but not at the same time!). Concerts usually begin at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise noted, and admission is free but limited to those eight years of age and older.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004 at 7:30 p.m. (Tabernacle): Lawrence Schreiber, organist emeritus of National City Christian Church in Washington, DC, will perform a recital of seasonal favorites on the Tabernacle organ.  This will be the last evening performance on the Æolian-Skinner organ prior to the closure of the Tabernacle for renovations on January 1, 2005.

Friday, January 7, 2005 at 7:30 p.m. (Conference Center): Stephen Cleobury, Organist and Music Director of King's College in Cambridge, will perform on the newly-installed Schoenstein organ of the Conference Center.

For an up-to-date listing of all concerts sponsored by the Temple Square Concert Series, click here.

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Other Special Events

Alexander Schreiner Centennial Celebration

(Held 8 & 9 September 2001).  This event was held to commemorate the life and music of the legendary organist who was associated with the Mormon Tabernacle for over half a century. Click here for more details.

American Classic Organ Symposia

(Held in January 1989 and January 1999). There are no plans at the present time for any further symposia. Audio tapes of the first (1989) symposium are available from AGO National Headquarters and from the Organ Historical Society.

American Guild of Organists Regional Convention

The Regional Convention for regions VIII and IX of the American Guild of Organists was held in Salt Lake City from June 16 to June 19, 2003.  Numerous events took place on Temple Square, offering ample opportunities to hear the organs in the Tabernacle, Conference Center, Assembly Hall, and Joseph Smith Memorial Building.

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Getting to Temple Square

For detailed instructions on getting to Temple Square, see the "Visitors' Info" page on this site.

This site is maintained by Richard Elliott, who is solely responsible for its content.
This is not an official publication of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
2000 Richard Elliott
(This page was last updated on 12 January 2005 )