MUSIC AT GRACE & ST. PETER'S
“If we consider and ask ourselves What sort of music we should wish to hear on entering a church we would surely, in describing our ideal, say first of all that it must be something different from what is heard elsewhere; that it should be a sacred music , devoted to its purpose, a music whose peace would still passion, whose dignity should strengthen our faith, whose unquestioned beauty should find a home in our hearts, to cheer us in life and death; a music worthy of the fair temples in which we meet and of the holy words of our liturgy; a music whose expression of the mystery of things unseen never allowed any trifling motive to ruffle the sanctity of its reserve. What power for good such a music would have!”
– Robert Bridges (1844-1930), Poet Laureate of Great Britain
Click on the links below to see PDF versions of the most recent music lists for the Choir of Grace & St. Peter's
Past Music Lists
Music is an integral part of the liturgical life of Grace and St. Peter’s as one of the primary ways in which we worship, love, and serve our Lord Jesus Christ. The Grace and St. Peter’s Choir has long been revered as one of the finest in Baltimore. Comprised of eight professional singers, their repertoire spans six centuries and features a diversity of composers reflective of the diversity found in sacred music from Biblical time to present day. They are also committed to the expansion of that repertoire through the performance of new sacred music, particularly pieces by Baltimore-based composers. The Grace and St. Peter’s Choir sings more than fifty choral services between October and June and can be heard weekly at Solemn High Mass and on third Sundays at Choral Evensong.
The first known organ to be housed in Grace Church was built in 1856 by the Anglo-American firm E & E. G. Hook of Boston. This instrument was large for its time with three manuals (keyboards), pedals, and 35 ranks of pipes. This organ was replaced in 1886 by the Roosevelt firm, which was based in New York City but had a branch office in Baltimore. Both of these instruments were built in the back of the church. In 1892, the chancel was enlarged and the Roosevelt organ was moved to the front of the church on the decani side (the current location of the Lady Chapel). A third organ was built in 1922 by Austin Organs of Hartford, Connecticut. This new instrument was nearly twice the size of the two previous organs and incorporated many pipes from the 1886 Roosevelt organ. It was at this time that the organ was moved to the opposite side of the chancel where it remains today. In commemoration of the organ’s centennial, Grace and St. Peter’s has contracted the Austin Organ Company to complete a mechanical and tonal restoration of Op. 1074. Please click here to read more about this project and how you can support or restoration effort.
Parishioners Jim and Kathy Forcum left a great legacy in support of music at Grace & St. Peter’s. At this time, we want to harness their generosity, and build on it: The Fund’s principal objective is to finance the restoration of our organ. Once that project is complete, the Fund will help to finance the expansion of our musical offerings through recitals, services of Choral Evensong, newly commissioned pieces, and the maintenance of our renovated instrument. Your gift to the Forcum Fund therefore serves two purposes: First, to renovate our organ; and second, to support the continued success of our music program. Your generosity will richly bless the ministry of music at Grace & St. Peter’s.
JORDAN PRESCOTT, MM, AAGO ORGANIST & CHOIRMASTER
Hailed by The Baltimore Sun as an “organ star,” Jordan Prescott has established himself as one of the leading organists, conductors, and academics of his generation. Jordan is a member of the music theory faculty at Peabody Conservatory having previously taught on the keyboard faculty at the University of Maryland – Baltimore County. He currently serves as Organist-Choirmaster at Grace and St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in downtown Baltimore. A respected conductor and rehearsal technician, Jordan prepares and leads the Grace and St. Peter’s Choir in more than 65 annual choral liturgies. Prescott is committed to expanding the musical canon and choirs under his direction have a commitment to the performance of music by historically excluded composers. He has commissioned more than a dozen pieces of new sacred choral music.
As a solo recitalist, Jordan performs extensively across the United States including appearances at West Point Military Academy Cadet Chapel, Princeton University Chapel, Washington National Cathedral (Washington, D.C.), Grace Cathedral (San Francisco), St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine (New York City). As an ensemble musician, Jordan has appeared under the batons of Marin Alsop, Nicolas McGegan, Anthony Blake Clark, and Joseph Young. Jordan earned first prize in the 16th International Organ Competition at West Chester University and was named one of Diapason magazine’s ’20 Under 30.’ Jordan’s research has been published in The American Organist and Tracker magazines and he regularly presents conference workshops, guest lectures, and masterclasses.
Jordan is a candidate for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Peabody Conservatory where he also holds the Master of Music. His doctoral dissertation focuses on the music of Herbert Howells and elements of continental modernity therein. Jordan’s teachers have included John Walker, Andrew Scanlon, and Christopher Jacobson. Additionally, he has studied in Paris with Marie-Louise Langlais.
An active member of the American Guild of Organists, Jordan holds the organization’s Associateship diploma. He is an avid distance runner and a finisher of the Baltimore Marathon. Jordan lives in downtown Baltimore with his beagle, Dorabella. Learn more at www.jordanprescott.com.