Chapter

“Professor” (1929–43)

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: http://dx.doi.org/10.5422/fso/9780823231874.003.0004
“Professor” (1929–43)

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In giving Pietro Yon authority over the music at St. Patrick's, the Cathedral was committing to a very grand experiment. He would receive a lavish budget and whatever personnel he deemed necessary to create the kind of sacred music for which he had become famed. To enhance the experience, there would be a tripartite organ, one of the largest in the world. The idea was costly but absolutely logical. St. Patrick's Cathedral was moving from national to international prominence, and its musical needs would be best served by a world-class musician who was also a world citizen. In this, Yon fit the bill perfectly. He would assemble a group of male singers who became the core of the Male Soloist Ensemble. Yon's time at St. Patrick's had been bracketed by national catastrophes—the Depression at the beginning, World War II at the end. Still, he had prevailed handsomely.

Keywords: Pietro Yon; sacred music; St. Patrick's Cathedral; Male Soloist Ensemble; singers; tripartite organ; Depression; World War II

Chapter.  19815 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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