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New England Composer Series:

George Whitefield Chadwick

Born: Lowell, Massachusetts, November 13, 1854

Died: Boston, Massachusetts, April 4, 1931

"Mr. Chadwick is intensely interested in making his country a better place
in which to live through the refining influence of good music."


George W. Chadwick was among the first rank of American composers during the late 19th century and early 20th centuries.

After early organ studies with Dudley Buck and Eugene Thayer at the New England Conservatory of Music, Chadwick went to Germany for studies with Salomon Jadassohn and Josef Rheinberger. Upon returning to Boston in 1880, Chadwick became a teacher at the New England Conservatory and later became its director in 1897. He served in that position until his death in 1931.



There have been a number of recordings of his instrumental music
(piano pieces, organ works, overtures, symphonies and chamber music).
Yet much of his choral music and songs remain neglected.

Along with John Knowles Paine (1839-1906), Chadwick was one of the
most respected members of the Second New England School, as it became to be known.

The First New England School consisted of 18th century composers, such
as: William Billings and Oliver Holden, which were the names used for a choral society in the 19th century.

As an illustration of the considerable respect Chadwick received, this is an excerpt from A Book of Choruses for High Schools and Choral Societies (1923):

He has composed five overtures, Rip Van Winkle, Thalia, Melpomene, Adonis, Euterpe; three symphonies; an opera, Judith; various smaller orchestral works, choral works, string quartets, and a number of anthems and songs. He was selected to compose the opening ode for the dedication of the Chicago World's Fair in 1893. Probably no American composer has had a larger influence on the development of music in this country. Mr. Chadwick's works have won a permanent place in the repertoires of orchestras, choruses, choirs, and singers the world over, and a performance of one of his compositions is an event both in this country and in the art centers of Europe.

As conductor he has played an important part in stimulating a love for the best choral and instrumental literature. As organist and composer of church music he has notably improved standards of taste in that field. As teacher and Director of the New England Conservatory of Music he has led thousands of America's finest young musicians to a truer realization of the dignity of their profession and to a consciousness of their responsibility which the American musician owes to his art and to his community.

Mr. Chadwick is intensely interested in making his country a better place in which to live through the refining influence of good music.


That is high praise indeed for this New England composer who deserves much more recognition today as one of the most talented of American composers from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

I have admired his music for many years, and as a composer myself, born on the same date as Chadwick, I am pleased that several of his choral works were performed by the Old Stoughton Musical Society and are now available on this CD: Music by Six New England Composers (AMRC 0002).

To paraphrase one of his choral works [available on the CD listed below], he was a composer of...

"All Power and Might."

--Roger Lee Hall


A chorus for mixed voices (1918)
music by George Whitefield Chadwick

This chorus was recorded live in concert
To order a CD with this work, go to this link:

World War I music



Here are a few CDs of Chadwick's instrumental music:


Chadwick: Symphonic Sketches; MacDowell: Suite for orchestra Op42/1-5



Chadwick: Four Symphonic Sketches & other composers



Chadwick: Symphonies 2&3







Chadwick: Symphonies No. 2 and 3



American Character










American Character:
Piano Music of George Whitefield Chadwick






CD: Music by Two New England Composers

George Whitefield Chadwick (1854-1931)

1. Anthem: "Lord of All Power and Might" (1895) -- Old Stoughtom Musical Society Chorus, 1987

2. +"Caravan Song" (1923) -- Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus, 1987

3. +"Mexican Serenade" (1923) -- Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus, 1987

4. Chorus: +"Praise Him, O Ye Heaven of Heavens" from Noel (1909) -- Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus; Earl Eyrich, conductor, 1987

5. Instrumental: +"The Star" from Noel (1909)-- Richard Hill, organist, at Old West Church, Boston, Massachusetts, 1980

6. Chorale: +"How Lovely Shines The Morning Star" from Noel (1909) -- Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus; Roger Hall, conductor, Old West Church, Boston, 1980

+ = First Modern Day Performance

Edwin Arthur Jones (1853-1911)

7. +Serenade: "Wake, Maiden Wake," Op. 16 (1881)[edited by Roger Hall] -- Old Stoughton Musical Society Male Voices; Earl Eyrich, conductor, 1987

8. +Soloist and Chorus: "King Christian," Op. 19 (1886)[edited by Roger Hal] --
Dennis Bender, bass-baritone; Old Stoughton Musical Society; Earl Eyrich, conductor, 1987

9. String Quartet No. 2 in G minor, Op. 22 (1987) -- The Middleton Quartet, 1987 [first performed by The Kneissel Quartet at Mrs. J.L. (Isabella Stewart) Gardner's home in Boston in 1889]

10. +Prelude and Fugue in G minor (1878) -- Richard Hill, organist -- performed at Musick in Old Boston Festival at Old West Church in Boston in 1980

11. Chorale: "Behold what matchless tender love" from Easter Concert (1890) -- Old Stoughton Musical Chorus; Earl Eyrich, conductor,1984

12. +Solo Quartet & Chorus: "Great God of Nations" from Easter Concert (1890) -- Jean Williams, soprano; Meredith Lays, alto; Peter Bradstreet, tenor; David Benjamin, bass; Old Stoughton Musical Society Chorus; David Hanson, organist; Roger Hall, conductor, 1981

+ = First Modern Day Performance




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Chadwick and Jones CD



Music by Chadwick and Jones also included on this CD:

Music by Six New England Composers (AMRC No. 0002)


New England Music Links on AMP

American Music Recordings Archive [AMRA]

Christmas Music in New England

"Glory, Hallelujah" - Songs and Hymns of the Civil War Era

Massachusetts Music

New England Composer Series No. 1: Edwin A. Jones

New England Music Institute (NEMI)

New England Music Series

New England Song Series No. 1: BATTLE HYMN OF THE REPUBLIC

New England Song Series No. 2: GOIN' HOME

New England Song Series No. 3: JINGLE BELLS

New England Song Series No. 4: SIMPLE GIFTS

New England Song Series No. 5: SONG OF THE OLD FOLKS
(Tune: Auld Lang Syne)

New England Song Series No. 6: FATHER AND I WENT DOWN TO CAMP
(Tune: Yankee Doodle)

Singing Stoughton

Society for Earlier American Music [SEAM]





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