Musicians, Singers, and Composers Among the Saints
  • A recent article on NLM might also be appropriate for readers/users here at Musica Sacra: http://www.newliturgicalmovement.org/2017/06/guest-article-musicians-singers-and.html#.WVSTt8bMzBI
    Does anyone have additional names to submit for the list?
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 5,122
    Many thanks for this list!
    It will be very useful.
  • rarty
    Posts: 72
    St. Thomas More (1478-1534), dedicated amateur singer in his parish choir.
    Thanked by 1Musicadesantos
  • wingletwinglet
    Posts: 36
    Many sources say that St. Rose of Lima played the guitar and sang. The NC Reporter denies this, so it must be true!
    Thanked by 1Musicadesantos
  • rogue63
    Posts: 368
    Blessed Ezequiel Huerta; martyr of the Cristero War. Organist/conductor/tenor. Father of 10; brother to a couple of priests. A personal hero of mine.
    Thanked by 1Musicadesantos
  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,717
    I shall only quibble that some "composers" are actually hymn text writers.

    And there are many more.

    Neat idea!
  • I am still looking for de Victoria for addition to this list. Over several years have heard about his cause for canonization, from two widely different sources, but can't find anything about it on my own yet.

  • StimsonInRehabStimsonInRehab
    Posts: 791
    The fact that Fulton Sheen was an organist blew my mind. I'm playing through the scenario in my mind of an episode of Life is Worth Living where he plays "dueling organs" with his special guest star: "Bish vs. (Arch)Bish".
  • on a list of "musicians, singers, and composers", I was surprised to see Pope St. Gregory the Great, notated "collected melodies and plain chant". I wonder, did he play, sing, or compose?
  • M. Jackson Osborn
    Posts: 5,122
    Gregory did, or had done by others, some re-ordering and codifying of the chant repertory, but it isn't likely that he actually composed any chant. There are some hymns that are attributed to him - which means texts, not melodies.

    His largely imaginary wholesale responsibility for the chant repertory which he inherited and to some degree revised, and to which posterity attached his name, was in no small part responsible for the worshipful esteem which the Roman chant came to be held throughout Romanitas lands and its spread throughout Charlemagne's empire - heavily 'influenced' by the chant of Frankish scholars.
  • I understood the term "composer" would be a bit controversial. "Lyricists" might have been a better term for some, while others used popular or existing tunes (or chant odes) of their own time with their text. In a loose sense of the word, the "composers" did "compose" songs...they just didn't have the gift of a tune or the ability to write one. No doubt they appreciated, in an anticipatory sense, the music that would indeed be sung for their texts. We have to remember the very long historical traditions that the Church has passed through in regards to music and not impose our 21st century concept onto 1st or 10th century affairs.
  • JDE
    Posts: 578
    What about St. Alphonse de Liguori? He wrote the popular Christmas hymn "Tu scendi dalle stelle," which I will warn you is a major earworm, so listen with caution.
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  • Kathy
    Posts: 4,717
    That's the Italian Joy to the World.
  • St. Alphonsus de Liguori is on the list! He wrote a substantial number of songs besides "Tu scendi" (which I personally enjoy). Listen to this video of his "Canto della Passione": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1OTyUXYqNt0
    Also read more here (http://www.santalfonsoedintorni.it/Spicilegium/61/SH-61-2013(II)407-423.pdf) and here (https://www.cssr.org.au/about_us/dsp-default.cfm?loadref=59).
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • jefe
    Posts: 121
    I would add my mentor, Anglican, Peter R. Hallock (1924-2014) to the list. A prolific composer, conductor, organist, counter tenor; he personally brought back the ancient office of Compline to a world wide audience. He was a real talent, a Renaissance man with a broad and deep legacy.
    Another is Richard Proulx (1937-2010). What a dedicated Roman, organist, conductor, composer, with a rich musical print legacy.
    Both of these men are what i call, "in the category of the mystical". These are the only two in my lifetime in this category. Am I correct is assuming the subject musician must be in the deceased category?
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  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 429
    So, I am now confused. What is the difference in a 'Servant of God', and a 'Venerable'? I thought they were the same.
  • JL
    Posts: 116
    Could we stop using the "musicians and singers" terminology? It's like saying "apples and Granny Smiths".

    And don't forget Bl. Giovenale Ancina of the Oratory!
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  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 296
    Servant of God has had their cause opened. Venerable has thereafter been declared to have lived a life of heroic virtue.
  • >> Could we stop using the "musicians and singers" terminology? It's like saying "apples and Granny Smiths".

    hm.
    I know someone who can compose, arrange, and play piano and organ beautifully, but cain't sing a lick.
    And someone else who will sing - beautifully - till you get tired and run them off, but they can't even play 'chopsticks'.
  • VilyanorVilyanor
    Posts: 296
    I feel like the latter much of the time, Mela XP
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  • And, once again, a topic worthy of comment and collaboration degenerates into a random succession of irrelevant remarks.
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  • JL
    Posts: 116
    People who write, perform, or direct music are musicians. Whether or not they are any good at these things is another matter entirely, and a job for other words.