Jennings Burnett

(George) Jennings Burnett. Organist-choirmaster, composer, impresario, b Stogumber, Somerset, England, 21 Dec 1867, d Victoria, BC, 10 Jan 1941. His first important teacher was J.R. Kelway Toms in Wellington, England. Burnett emigrated to the USA and in 1889 held a church position in Chicago.

Burnett, Jennings

(George) Jennings Burnett. Organist-choirmaster, composer, impresario, b Stogumber, Somerset, England, 21 Dec 1867, d Victoria, BC, 10 Jan 1941. His first important teacher was J.R. Kelway Toms in Wellington, England. Burnett emigrated to the USA and in 1889 held a church position in Chicago. In 1890 he went to New Westminster, then to Victoria, BC. A leading musician in that city for five decades, he was organist-choirmaster 1890-1903 at St Andrew's Presbyterian Church and then, until shortly before his death, at St John's Church. He brought outstanding concert artists (Alfred Hollins, T. Tertius Noble, Marcel Dupré, Clarence Eddy, and others) to Victoria and organized performances of Handel's Messiah in 1894, Rossini's Stabat Mater in 1917, and other choral works. For several years the choir director at Victoria High School and a piano-organ-theory teacher, Burnett was a founding member of the BCRMTA. Of his compositions - over 100 anthems, chants, and services, and piano, organ, and orchestral works - some were published by Novello, Weekes, Summy, Nordheimer, Whaley Royce, and Derek. Seven have been reprinted in CMH including four hymn tunes (vol 5), two anthems (vol 9) and The British African Gavotte for organ (vol 4).