An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Willan, Healey

(Oct. 12, 1880-Feb. 16, 1968). Renowned composer of church music. He was born in Balham, in Surrey, England. He trained at St. Saviour's, Eastbourne. After advanced study in organ and piano, he served several churches in and near London. In 1913 he came to Toronto, Ontario, Canada, as head of the music theory department at the University of Toronto and organist and choirmaster at St. Paul's Church. From 1921 until his death he was precentor at the Church of St. Mary Magdalene. He wrote adaptations of ancient service music, hymn tunes, faux-bourdons, newly composed service music, motets, symphonies, operas, cantatas, organ works, chamber music, songs, and incidental music for plays. The Hymnal 1982 includes the Kyrie, Sanctus, Agnus Dei, and Gloria in excelsis (S 91, S 114, S 158, and S 202) from his Missa de Sancta Maria Magdalena. He died in Toronto.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from “An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians,” Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.