Wild, Harrison M.



Well-known organist and conductor; born at Hoboken, New Jersey, March 6, 1861; his parents were musical, his father playing both violin and cello. He began music study at nine, and with the exception of a year at Leipsic, where he studied organ under a Rust, theory under Richter, and piano under Zwintscher and Louis Maas, his musical education was received in Chicago, his teachers in that city being Arthur J. Creswold and Clarence Eddy for organ and Emil Liebling for piano. Since the age of fifteen he has been active as an organist, holding positions at Ascension Episcopal Church, then for a year at Memorial Baptist, and for thirteen years at Unity Church, where he gave over two hundred recitals. Since 1898 he has been organist of Grace Episcopal Church, where the high order of his service playing and his artistic rendering of works from all schools have brought him into great demand as a teacher. Although then the youngest of Chicago's prominent organists, he was chosen to give the opening concert on the Auditorium organ in 1891, and in 1893 to give three recitals at the Columbian Exposition. For ten years he has been conductor of the Apollo Musical Club, Chicago, for six years of the Mendelssohn Club, Chicago, a male choral society, and for three years of the Mendelssohn Club at Rockford, Illinois, an organization of women's voices. He is Dean of the Western chapter of the American Guild of Organists. Mr. Wild is also a good pianist. Personally he is unassuming and courteous, with a vein of quiet humor, and during his thirty years' work in Chicago has made many friends and admirers.