The Substitute Choirmaster (May 25, 1879)

Salvatore Basile

in Fifth Avenue Famous

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print May 2010 | ISBN: 9780823231874
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823234929 | DOI:
The Substitute Choirmaster (May             25, 1879)

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William F. Pecher had more than enough reason to be discouraged. For most of his life, the organist had led an existence in which careful plans had always been made, but nothing had worked out exactly as planned. Music-making on a high level could be a risk, often a ruinously expensive one. New Yorkers hungry for musical improvement would soon notice an increase in cash outlay, if not quality. This chapter traces the history of St. Patrick's Cathedral and Pecher's tenure as its first ever choirmaster. St. Patrick's maintains an unusual place in the history of sacred music—not only because of its fame but also because its own history coincides with that of a critical time in the history of New York itself, when the city evolved from a commercial port town into an international capital.

Keywords: St. Patrick's Cathedral; William F. Pecher; sacred music; history; New York; organist

Chapter.  9032 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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