The life and works of Peter R. Hallock (b. 1924)
Anderson, Jason Allen
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Peter R. Hallock, a native of Washington State, is a mystic, countertenor, composer, organist, and liturgist inextricably linked to St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral, Seattle. He served as organist/choirmaster there from 1951 to 1991 and was named Canon Precentor during his tenure at the cathedral---one of the first laypersons to hold a title traditionally reserved for clergy.Hallock is known as an innovator. Among his many contributions to local and national church music traditions are: introduction of countless audiences in the United States, and Seattle and the Pacific Northwest in particular, to the countertenor voice; the launch of a chant study group that eventually became known as The Compline Choir, an ensemble that has led to a resurgence of interest in the Office of Compline; the installation of the Flentrop tracker-action organ at the cathedral, making St. Mark's the first Episcopal cathedral to install such an instrument; the development of the Advent and Good Friday Processions for the cathedral; reintroduction of liturgical dramas there; composition of The Ionian Psalter; and, presentation of Seattle's first historically informed performance of Handel's Messiah.Many church, academic, and professional musicians do not know Hallock or his music, which includes over two hundred original compositions and arrangements. This dissertation, the first academic study of the life and works of Peter R. Hallock, aims to remedy this. Structured in three parts, the dissertation offers (1) a biography of Hallock, (2) an annotated chronological catalog of his works together with a primer on his compositional process and style, and (3) a selection of six unpublished compositions.
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