Wesley Berg

Wesley (Peter) Berg. Musicologist, teacher, administrator, b Altona, Man, 5 Nov 1942; BA (Manitoba) 1966; AWBM 1966; B MUS (Alberta) 1970; M MUS (Alberta) 1971; PH D (University of Washington) 1979. Berg studied piano with G.

Berg, Wesley

Wesley (Peter) Berg. Musicologist, teacher, administrator, b Altona, Man, 5 Nov 1942; BA (Manitoba) 1966; AWBM 1966; B MUS (Alberta) 1970; M MUS (Alberta) 1971; PH D (University of Washington) 1979. Berg studied piano with G. Edward Lincoln in Winnipeg and later conducted 1969-77 the Edmonton German Male Choir Liederkranz. He volunteered in Guyana with the Canadian University Service Overseas 1967-68, joined the teaching faculty at the University of Alberta in 1974, and served as chairman of the Department of Music 1989-95. In 1990 he also became the president of the Western Board of Music (now Conservatory Canada).

Berg's doctoral thesis was entitled 'Choral festivals and choral workshops among the Mennonites of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, 1900-1960, with an account of early developments in Russia' and his studies have continued to concentrate on Mennonite hymnody, musical institutions, and choral singing as well as the general music history of the Edmonton region. In the 1990s Berg studied hymn tunes obtained from La Crete, Alberta Mennonites. He authored many articles and read papers at meetings of the Institute for Anabaptist Mennonite Studies (1988), CUMS (1986), the Sonneck Society (1990), and the Mennonite Historical Society of Alberta (2000), among others. Berg served on the new Mennonite hymnal committee, and was a contributor to EMC and New Grove.

Writings

From Russia With Music: A Study of the Mennonite Choral Singing Tradition in Canada (Winnipeg 1985)

'Mennonite choral singing past and present,' Anacrusis, vol 5, Spring 1986

'Gesangbuch, Ziffern, und Deutschtum: a study of the life and work of J.P. Claszen,' Journal of Mennonite Studies, vol 4, 1986

'The music of the Mennonite brethren in Saskatchewan to 1923,' American Music, vol 4, Winter 1986

'Music in Edmonton 1880-1905,' CUMR, vol 7, 1986

'From piety to sophistication: developments in Canadian-Mennonite music after World War II,' Journal of Mennonite Studies, vol 6, 1988

'Music among the Mennonites of Russia,' Mennonites in Russia, 1788-1988: Essays in Honour of Gerhard Lohrenz, ed John Friesen (Winnipeg 1989)

- and Bayley, Jonathan. 'W.J. Hendra: a pioneer musician in Edmonton,' Alberta History, vol 38, Autumn 1990

- and Paulsen, Gerry. 'Mrs. J.B. Carmichael and the Edmonton Civic Opera Society 1935-1971,' CUMR, no. 17, 1997

'Bearing arms for the Tsar: The music of the Germans from Russia,' Journal of Mennonite Studies, no. 17, 1999

'In search of the old way of singing,' in Knowing and Interpreting Our Past: Alberta's Mennonite History, ed Judith Rempel (Calgary 2000)

- and Gross, Suzanne. 'Singing it "our way": Pennsylvania-German Mennonite Notenbüchlein 1780-1835,' American Music 19, summer 2001

- and Brown, Janice and Nishikawa, Teruka. 'From good wife and wise mother to the Otaka Award: Japanese women composers 1868 to the present,' US-Japan Women's Journal 22, 2002


Further Reading

  • Bozynski, Michelle. 'Profile: Wesley Berg,' In Tune: Words on Music, Sept 1992