Jordan, Henri K.
Henri K. (Kew) Jordan. Choir conductor, organist, manufacturer, b Seaforth, near Stratford, Ont, 30 Mar 1880, d Brantford, Ont, 27 Oct 1949; honorary D MUS (Toronto) 1938. He studied piano and organ at the Toronto College of Music under F.H. Torrington and Frank Welsman and was cornet soloist in the 48th Highlanders Regimental Band. He gained experience as a church organist in Toronto, Winnipeg, and Goderich, Ont.
In 1903 Jordan trained the Brantford Festival Chorus, which had been formed for participation in the Cycle of Musical Festivals, and took over the Brantford Male Choir11, which his brother Albert D. Jordan had conducted in its first season, 1902-3. In 1903 and 1904 the choir was joined in its annual concerts by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under Victor Herbert. In 1906, adding women to the choir, Jordan converted it into the Schubert Choir, an ensemble that brought fame to Jordan and to Brantford. He also was organist-choirmaster at Brant Ave Methodist (later United) Church, where, early in the century, he presented The Creation and Messiah and where a memorial plaque was dedicated to him in 1950. Jordan composed songs, anthems, and other choral pieces and led several bands. The Schubert Choir disbanded after his retirement in 1941. His last appearance as conductor probably was in a presentation of Gounod's Redemption at a CCO (RCCO) meeting in 1948. On an inscribed photograph in 1933 Percy Grainger called him 'one of the greatest musicians and most original and inspired choral conductors I have ever seen'.
During World War I Jordan achieved the rank of major and won the Military Cross. In later years he was president of the Canadian Valve and Hydrant Co of Brantford.