Congratulations to Dr. Horst Buchholz!
  • Dear Colleagues,
    Congratulations and prayers for CMAA's own Dr. Horst Buchholz, newly appointed Director of Music at the Cathedral
    Basilica of Saint Louis in Missouri. Please join me in prayers for the success of Dr. Buchholz's new ministry in one
    of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world. May his service there be long and productive! Merry Christmas & a
    Happy and Holy New Year to all!
  • Great news indeed!
  • Brilliant! An excellent appointment.

  • He did dramatic work at Trinity Cathedral - drastic improvement and I know that he will be missed.
  • Leak leak leak!

    It's wonderful.
  • Maureen
    Posts: 673
    How wonderful! Congratulations!
  • I know some people at Trinity who will be seriously bummed. And Case Collegium has been doing a Brownbag Concert there annually, so I'm hoping we can maintain that under new management. But good for Horst.
  • BruceL
    Posts: 1,070
    I'm looking forward to having him here in St. Louis. Unfortunately, my work schedule (and my wedding!) hasn't allowed me to attend a colloquium, so I haven't had the privilege to work with Dr. Buchholz. That said, many of us in St. Louis were very worried that we would get "anyone" rather than "someone" for the cathedral, so this is very positive!
  • So, Bruce, was he hired to "clean house"? I was looking at their mass schedule, and it looked like something from the land of the St. Louis Jesuits.
  • BruceL
    Posts: 1,070

    I can't claim any "insider information". That said (full disclosure), Dr. Romeri was the consultant for my hire here at the parish. There are certainly some good things in the cathedral program as-is, and it seemed that there was more of a movement toward chant or at least the proper texts at the (few) Masses I've been able to attend the last two years (for example, the ordination Masses have had excellent music.) The execution is always very good for a Catholic cathedral in this country, and certainly Dr. Romeri was very conscientious about the standards there.

    I think there is room for improvement in the selections at the Masses, at least if we take a strict view of a cathedral program in light of SC and other Vatican documents. However, as is often the case, some of the things you mention may be due to contrary priests, laity, musicians, or any combination of the above!

    Dr. Buchholz will be fortunate to be gaining a program that has high standards; hopefully he can make some progress in areas such as 1) a Gregorian schola (for example, the seminarians would be IDEAL for this) at at least one weekend Mass...our own Fr. Samuel Weber was hired by now Cdl. Burke with this sort of role in mind; 2) more a cappella polyphony on a weekly basis (this is tricky because of the vast acoustic...tuning and projection issues), and 3) the more generous use of Latin Mass ordinaries...although this might depend on the willingness of the priests to sing the Mass. I believe that the rector is in the process of moving the choir to the gallery; although this may create some coordination problems, it's my opinion that the projection there might be a little better. The only problem is that most of the organ is at the other end of the church in the choir!

    In any case, I am very positive about this hire: the job description was pretty wide-open, so I was worried there was a chance things were not being taken seriously. Needless to say, I was pleased to find out that was not the case!
  • Ouch...Jeffrey! It is better to remain silent, and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove ALL doubt! As one who was actually involved at the CBSTL for several years, making music, I can tell you that there was virtually NO STL Jesuit music. The only time that I can recall that there was, was when it had been requested by a family for a Funeral Mass.
  • No, I didn't see any SLJ on the programs...but it was not what I would expect from a cathedral, let alone one hiring Horst Buchholz. So I was being more smart-ass than ignorant...which may, alas, amount to the same thing sometimes.
  • The confusion might be that the SLJs were busier up the street at St Francis Xavier College Church, right on the St. Louis U. campus. There used to be a 4M Kilgen in the loft and an antiphonal in the Sanctuary. I don't know what they have there now.
  • BruceL
    Posts: 1,070

    This is all apocryphal, but several Episcopalian musicians in town of good reputation tell me that the Kilgen was thrown out in the 60's/70's...literally...into the alley dumpsters. I shudder to think of it! This organ was considered the best thing in town, I am told, and Dupre and many other notables played it. Remember, this is the town in which Guilmant played his famous series of World's Fair recitals,etc. I am told that the responsible party in the throw away is one of the who perhaps served on a USCCB advisory board recently...however, I cannot corroborate that with any internet research.

    All that remains now is the grillework of what was a very substantial and impressive Kilgen. Very sad.
  • Adam WoodAdam Wood
    Posts: 6,439
    Dude. I don't even throwaway hymnals that I hate.
  • They threw away organs here in Cleveland too. It's as if Oliver Cromwell were put in charge of church music.
  • Gentlemen,

    It is my understanding that the organ remained at St. Francis Xavier until the early nineties. It was the thought then, that they "would never get a new organ until they had gotten rid of the old one." There is, somewhere, a proposal by Holtkamp for the College Church that had the organ hanging on either side of the nave from the Clearstory. I am told that this was an awful design as there was not even any way to service the instrument without the erection of scaffolding! Several notable ranks were saved at the 11th hour when one of the organists was permitted to enter the church in the middle of the night, together with the serviceman. I know there was a Doppel Flute and and perhaps a pair of strings and an Oboe or French Horn. I cannot recall the details. The "big honk" (hooded) that was behind the Altar had already mysteriously gone missing, and was never recovered. And, as time has passed, no one seems to be sure where these ranks ended up.
  • I forgot to mention, that, according to my very reliable source, it was a well regarded Dominican Priest (incidentally an organist) that was the proponent of removing the Kilgen for the sake of hopefully building the Holtkamp. This cleric has since passed, so I will not speak ill of him.
  • BruceL
    Posts: 1,070

    You probably have better information on this than me since you have been in town at C-B longer, so I defer! :) Actually, I shouldn't have assumed the date of 60s/70s, and in fact that wouldn't be correct since my source wasn't even in town in the 70s. I'll chalk up my revisionist timeline to not enough coffee yesterday and a deep seated hatred of the 60s and 70s (*just kidding*).

    Agreed on the Holtkamp proposal. That would be covering up some nice windows, too, right? (For those who are not familiar with STL, "College Church" has some of the most beautiful Frei windows in the city.)

    Perhaps, in an ironic twist, they can just buy the A-S from St. Thomas, 5th Ave., when they throw IT out for their Dobson! It's not much A-S anymore, but at least it's better than nothing!
  • Some of us remember the program that did NOT exist at the St. Louis Cathedral before John Romeri. His leadership brought life to a music program that was nearly non-existant. If you want to see Jesuit music on the programs, find something prior to September 1992. After that time, John, starting with nearly nothing created a program that was, at the very least respectable, if not progressive. Thanks to those many years, often working under some challenging circumstances, there is actually a music program at the Cathedral Basilica that Dr. Bucholz will no doubt continue to shape. As John Romeri accomplished much in his years, I am hopeful that Dr. Bucholz will do the same.

    Regarding the organ at St. Francis Xavier (College) Church, the stops mentioned by BB, I believe made it to Indiana where a now deceased organ builder tried to put them to good use. Reportedly, the organ had been designed by Guilmant and dedicated by Vierne. In "The Organist's Book of Days" on the page of October 6, you will find a picture of Louis Vierne at the console of St. Francis Xavier Church, dated April 3, 1927. Dupre may have played the instrument. It is true that the organ was in need of major renovation and that the Holtkamp design wasn't ideal. The Kilgen was removed when the church received a much needed renovation. Hindsight being 20/20, it would have been best to store the instrument for future restoration and re-installation.

    Bruce, there have been opportunities for College Church to obtain at least one other instrument. There wasn't support to make that happen. Nonetheless, it is a building that would benefit from a worthy instrument.
  • College Church - neither chicken nor egg exist!

    You know, the old adage about whether a church needs an organ first in order to make sense of hiring a good organist, or must first find a good organist who is willing to work towards a good organ for who knows how long! Well, if the powers that be don't want either an organist or an organ, then what? So there's not chicken house on that corner!

    But if the Church can't make her voice heard about either Gregorian chant or the organ as the music of the Church being supreme, then this farm will never have a chicken coup!

    Maybe that's the problem with Am-church -- Americans' desire for beef! No question about chicken or egg coming first, just lots of left over b*** s***!
  • Hear, hear, "Prestant!"