Storied boys choir heard anew

The Boston Archdiocesan Choir School is the only Catholic boy choir school in the U.S. Today the Boston Globe has a story on the choir and its new director from Canterbury, 27-year-old John Robinson.

(Let’s not forget the excellent Madelein Choir School for boys and girls at the Cathedral of the Madeleine in Salt Lake City.)


  1. As a long-time member of the men’s schola at BACS, I was pleased that the school received this front page recognition in the region’s largest newspaper. As with my colleagues, I’ve been quite pleased with John Robinson’s direction and deeply admire his natural talents. He’s a genuinely nice person as well.

    There were some implied criticisms of the post-Marier leadership however that misled. The rupture of the BSO-BACS relationship had less to do with a decline in quality than a mounting concern among some BSO supporters (and I’m told some members) that an “all boys” ensemble did not represent the political ideals of the time. There may have also been issues involving the school’s rigorous academic demands that contributed as well.

    Also the article’s implied criticism does not give due credit to the successor of choir school founder Theodore Marier for helping put the school on stable financial footing. For all his charisma and creative originality, Marier followed the God-will-provide school of economics. John Dunn on the other hand possessed the kind of fiduciary foresight that such an institution requires for survival.

  2. I’m happy to see this positive publicity for BACS and Catholic choral institutions in general. I understand that every opportunity to begin anew involves “turning a corner” and letting go of the past. The local story may certainly hinge upon restoring past cultural associations. For the rest of us, it is important to give John Dunn his due for his offering of manifold gifts of music, leadership and administration. There are precious few institutions dedicated to handing on musical expressions of faith from one generation to the next. Since music is an ephemeral art, tradition is dependent on those institutions that conserve it as a living tradition.

    Indeed, let us not forget the Madeleine Choir School in Salt Lake City, and St. Michael’s Choir School in Toronto, as well as the French- and Spanish-speaking choir schools on our continent. They are the survivors of myriad attempts to establish such such institutions during the last century.


    Fr. Anthony, thank you for providing this link. It is wonderful to hear of the new director and the current status of the Boston Archdiocesan Choir School!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.