A beloved Seattle institution, every Sunday at 9:30 p.m. since 1956. All are welcome.
The Compline service from Saint Mark's is broadcast live on Classical KING (98.1 FM, or king.org).
The service is also livestreamed. Watch on the cathedral's livestream page here, or via Facebook Live (either the cathedral's page or the choir's page), or on the cathedral's YouTube channel. For more information, please visit the Compline Choir's website.
Compline from Saint Mark's is also available each week as a podcast. Search for "The Compline Choir" wherever you get your podcasts.
About the Office of Compline
A beloved Seattle institution since 1956, the all-male Compline Choir sings the last monastic office of the day every Sunday at 9:30 p.m. When the cathedral building is open, hundreds pack the nave each week for this meditative service, while thousands more listen to the live radio broadcast—Classical KING (98.1 FM) has broadcast the service live from the cathedral nave since the early 1960s, by some accounts the longest-running weekly radio broadcast in Seattle. Today, the service is also available as a video livestream or as a podcast.
The Order of Service for the office of Compline as it is sung at Saint Mark's—the so-called "Seattle Rite"—may be seen here.
The texts of the hymns and anthems to be sung at Compline are posted each week on The Compline Underground blog.
Please note that as of May 11, the cathedral has discontinued the mask recommendation and the "distanced section" in the nave. Learn more here.
Listen & read more:
- Learn more about ways to listen to Compline.
- Browse CD and digital recordings featuring the Compline Choir
- Compline FAQs
Compline: A Seattle Rite is a brief video about the Compline service and the Compline Choir at Saint Mark's Cathedral made by Richard Gilbert & Michael Seewer in 2021. An older video about compline, produced in 2013 by Austin Rickel & George Carman, can be seen here.
Organ by Night
The return of in-person Compline services also marks the return of another favorite late-night musical event: post-Compline organ music! These informal mini-concerts have introduced generations of Seattleites to the power and beauty of a real pipe organ. All are welcome to listen in the nave, or join the organist in the loft to see what playing an instrument of this size is really like. (The radio program The Organ Loft, which airs on KING-FM immediately following Compline each week, was inspired by this tradition.) A Q&A in the loft usually follows the performance.
2023 Organ by Night organists:
- MAY 21, 2023: Christopher Stroh
- JUNE 18: Susanna Valleau
- JULY 16: Canon Michael Kleinschmidt
- AUGUST 20: Alan Lynch
- SEPTEMBER 17: Canon Michael Kleinschmidt
- OCTOBER 15: Amiel Elfert
- NOVEMBER 19: Michael Plagerman
NOTE: The decision to include these informal presentations on the Compline video livestream is left to the discretion of the organist. Some prefer not to, for a variety or reasons. The choice to livestream Organ by Night or not will typically not be announced in advance.
The Women's Compline Choir of Saint Mark's
In the summer of 2019, the men of the Compline Choir traveled to the U.K. for two weeks, serving residencies in Canterbury and Salisbury. To cover the services during absence, Saint Mark's Associate Musician Rebekah Gilmore was asked to assemble an all-female choir, comprising some of the most accomplished choral singers in the Seattle area. The services they sang, the first all-female services in the 63-year history of Compline at Saint Mark's, were deeply moving to many, and may be heard here.
The Women's Compline Choir now gathers to chant the service several times each year, usually in the summer. The most recent services were be July 30 & August 6, 2023, which can be found here. Watch this space for 2024 dates.