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History of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Utah
Taken from the Utah History Encyclopedia. (Links Added)
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In 1869, following a succession of short-term conductors (including Parry, Stephen H. Goddard, James Smithies, Charles John Thomas, and Robert Sands), English convert George Careless, a professional musician from London, was appointed director of the choir, with Joseph J. Daynes as organist. Under Careless, the choir assumed a more permanent character, with many of the unique features that would ultimately define its role in the church and distinguish it from similar choirs in other Mormon communities. His successor, British-trained Ebeneezer Beesely (1880-89), further shaped the choir's identity and began the tradition of touring with the choir to neighboring communities, keeping the choir together during the intense difficulties associated with the practice of polygamy.

During the long tenure of Welsh director Evan Stephens (1890-1916), the Mormon Tabernacle Choir achieved new levels of discipline and excellence; the present choir loft was built in the west end of the Tabernacle, choir membership swelled to 600, and the choir took the first of its many national and international tours. After this tour, membership in the choir was recognized as an important church calling which could take precedence over other church responsibilities. Under Stephens, the first recording of the choir was made on 1 September 1910. Succeeding him in 1916, Anthony Lund, who had studied at the Leipzig Conservatory, brought a twentieth-century mentality to the choir, replacing the robust but eccentric character of Stephens's choir with a more refined, European sound. Lund recorded with the choir in 1927 for the Victor Company and conducted the first nationwide radio broadcast (NBC) of "Music and the Spoken Word" on 15 July 1929. Moving to CBS in 1932, the program has continued as the longest uninterrupted network broadcast in American radio history.


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