Art&Seek presents This Week in Texas Music History. Every week, we’ll spotlight a different moment and the musician who made it. This week, Texas music scholar Gary Hartman celebrates one of the oldest musical organizations in the state.
You can also hear This Week in Texas Music History on Sunday at precisely 6:04 p.m. on KERA radio. But subscribe to the podcast so you won’t miss an episode. And our thanks to KUT public radio in Austin for helping us bring this segment to you. And if you’re a music lover, be sure to check out Track by Track, the podcast from Paul Slavens, host of KXT’s The Paul Slavens Show, heard Sunday night’s at 8.
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The Houston Liederkranz, a German-Texas singing society, was founded on Jan. 15, 1925. Germans had established numerous musical organizations since arriving in Texas in large numbers during the 1840s. However, as World War I brought wide spread anti-German sentiment and discrimination against German Texans, many of these groups disbanded. By the 1920s, former members of the old Houston Mannerchor and the Houston Sangerbund joined together to form the new Houston Liederkranz. The Houston Liederkranz grew to include men’s and women’s choirs and even a theater group, which performed in the Houston area for years.