Ward, Justine Bayard Cutting

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WARD, JUSTINE BAYARD CUTTING

Musician and educator; b. Aug. 7, 1879, Morristown, New Jersey; daughter of William Bayard and Olivia Murray Cutting; d. Nov. 27, 1975, Washington, D.C. After her conversion to Roman Catholicism in 1904, she devoted herself to the cause of church music, inspired by the motu proprio, Tra le sollecitudini, on sacred music of Pius X (1903), which called for a revival of interest in gregorian chant and classic polyphony.

Ward was convinced that any reform in church music had to begin at the earliest stages of the child's education with proper training in music. In 1910 Dean Thomas E. Shields of Sisters' College, the Catholic University of America asked her to prepare a music curriculum for the parochial schools. With the collaboration of J. Young, SJ she published Music First Year of the Ward Method in 1916. That same year she introduced her method in the Annunication School, in New York, assisted by Mother G. Stevens, a religious of the Sacred Heart, and in 1917 she endowed a Pius X Chair of Liturgical Music at Manhattanville College. This later became known as the pius x school of liturgical music. For many years, Ward taught at Sisters' College as well as at the Pius X School.

In 1920, Ward, secretary of the Auxiliary Committee for the Pontifical School of Sacred Music, Rome, joined forces with the St. Gregory Society of America to organize an International Congress of Gregorian Chant in New York. Dom André Mocquereau and Dom Augustin Gatard, Benedictine monks of the Solesmes Congregation, conducted the services at St. Patrick's Cathedral where hundreds of adults and children trained in the Ward Method sang the Gregorian chants. She was responsible, too, for the 1922 summer session at Manhattanville, where Dom Mocquereau taught the chant and Dom Hebert Desrocquettes, Gregorian accompaniment, both courses according to the principles of Solesmes.

The Ward Method spread quickly throughout the world. In particular, Ward reached a wide audience with her lectures on the chant illustrated with examples sung by the Pius X Choir, whose training she carefully supervised. In the early 1930s the partnership of Mother Stevens and Ward was dissolved, but both continued to work zealously for the reform of church music.

In 1929 Ward established the Dom Mocquereau Schola Cantorum Foundation for the teaching and the dissemination of Gregorian Chant and in 1930, she founded a schola cantorum at Catholic University. For her long service to church music Ward received many honors: decorations from the Italian and Dutch governments: the Croce di Benemerenza, Order of Malta: the Cross, Pro Ecclesia et pontifice from Pius XII; honorary degrees from the Pontifical School of Sacred Music and Catholic University. The liturgical reforms of Vatican II with the emphasis on the vernacular de-emphasized plainchant but Ward, until her death, continued to support Solesmes in its research and study of Gregorian chant.

Bibliography: j. b. ward, "The Reform in Church Music," Atlantic Monthly 97 (1906) 455463; "Music in the Parochial Schools," Catholic Choirmaster 2 (Apr. 1916) 68; "School Music in Its Relation to Church Music," Catholic Choirmaster 4 (Jan. 1918) 29; Hymnal (Washington, D.C. 1918 rev. ed. 1930); Gregorian Chant, v. 1 and 2, Catholic Education Series (Washington, D.C. 1923 and 1949); "Ex ore infantium," Commonweal 2 (1925) 450451; That All May Sing (Washington, D.C. 1956, rev. ed. New York 1976).

[c. a. carroll]

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