Georgian Society for East Yorkshire

Music in Beverley

Beverley Market

Beverley Market

Beverley saw a great musical scene during the eighteenth century, with many musicians living in the town. From the 1750s, subscription concerts were held in the Assembly Rooms in North Bar Within. Private concerts were also common, one possibly being mentioned in 1762 at which airs from the Messiah were performed by a visiting singer from Newcastle.

The town became a venue for popular music festivals. One, in 1769, marked the opening of the new organ at Beverley Minster. Organs in the eighteenth century were more modest than those today, but the Beverley Minster organ was large by Georgian standards. Like all English organs at the time, it lacked the pedal keyboard that gave later organ music much of its power, but before 1824 it became one of the first English organs to be fitted with pedals.

Another large music festival took place in 1819, this time at St. Mary's church. By 1825 Beverley had its own choral society.

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