Music Club

If there is one field in which numerous Xaverians have excelled, it is undoubtedly music. Fr. Richard Curry S.J. is rightly considered the 'Father of Music' in Xavier's. It was he who founded the church choir and the school choir and laid the foundation for music in Xavier's. He had founded a staff band which played during all special functions and gatherings. The school band he started played for all the functions and programs like Xavier Fair or Sports Meet. Fr. Curry was the Head of the Chemistry Department. It was during his time that the Xavier Choir began taking part in the 'Festival of Choirs' organised by Delhi YMCA during every Christmas season. (We can proudly say that we participated in this event for the 39th year in 2009. Children of the Prep Department are the ones who mainly participate in this event and year after year, they enthrall the audience with their magic performances). Fr. Curry was a scientist and musician and was responsible for raising the scientific temper of the school as well as developing the musical talents of a number of students. He loved to work with young people who were interested in learning music. When Fr. Frank Loesch died Fr. Curry directed the choir for the funeral mass and ten days later he too left for his heavenly abode. He died of a heart attack at the age of 45 on 5 Feb. 1972.
Another important figure in the field of music in Xavier's was Fr. Robert J. Mayer, S.J. who used to be jokingly referred to as the 'Mayer' of Delhi!!! He was gifted with extraordinary musical talent. He came from America to India in 1951. He served in India and Nepal and then volunteered for service in East Africa. He reached St. Xavier's school in 1972 and he remained here for eleven years. Fr. Mayer composed the 'Xavier Cheer Song' which every Xaverian proudly sings. On certain days, he would come down to the assembly grounds with the choir and would walk down the rows of boys and coax each unwilling throat into joyous singing. He had composed two thousand poems out of which 200 were put to music. These were published in 'Season Songs for Children'. The school song composed by him is still sung at various functions in the school. His deep love for the Society and his Jesuit brothers was shown by his composition of sonnets at the death of any Jesuit of Patna province and poems for other occasions. He died on 28 Jan. 2000 in the US.
Xavier's inherited the musical legacy of these two stalwarts through the hands of Mr. Basil Miranda who had joined Xavier's in 1965 as a Biology teacher. He infused music into the life blood of every Xaverian by playing his accordion. He was a man for all seasons- be it Music Fest, Play Festival, Club Activities or any other school functions his help and support was inevitable. Accompanied by his accordion he filled the heart of every Xaverian with music for 44 long years before he finally signed off from Xavier's campus in March 2009. He rendered his valuable help for the preparation of the musical 'Sound of Music' staged by the Junior School students on the occasion of the Golden Jubilee celebrations. On the Indian musical side one cannot forget late Mr. Rajeshwar Paul who was our first music teacher. He composed the Hindi school song. Mrs. Kanchan Verma too contributed substantially to the growth of music in Xavier's.
St. Xavier's has staged various musicals. The first one was 'Oliver' in which the cast was both the staff and the students. Mr. Harold Joseph, the famous composer of the All India Radio theme song, did music direction for this musical. The other musicals presented by Xavier's were 'Mikado', 'Jesus Christ Superstar', 'Kids Stuff' 'Joseph and His Technicolor Dream Coat' and 'The Ghost Train'. 'The Fourth Wiseman' was staged under the guidance of Fr. T.J. Jose, the former Headmaster of Xavier's in 2002. About 80 to 100 students participated in the choir. In December 2009 under the guidance of the present Headmaster Fr. Shaju Varghese the junior school staged 'Sound of Music' on the occasion of the school's Golden Jubilee.
Among the leading musical stars, Xavier's cannot forget Mr. Param Vir who was a brilliant musician and an excellent pianist. He played piano for the first ever musical staged by the school 'Oliver'. He also directed music for the other musicals staged by Xavier's. In early 80's the school formed its first Rock Band 'The Electric Plant' which played at the Jam Session during the Xavier Fair. Rahul Ram(1981), Sushmit Sen (1981), of the 'Indian Ocean' fame are the other luminaries of the 80's. It may not be fair on our side, if we mention some of the names and leave out those countless stars we have produced - still we would like to place on record a few names of the great musical stars Xavier's has produced. They are - John Packiam, Oscar D'Mello, Lester D'Mello, Praful Gandhi, Vizy Alfred, Mani Thomas, Ashish Abraham, Kem Trivedi, (Subir Malik,Nitin Malik, Chinten Kalra- of the Rock Band 'Parikrama'), Lokesh Bakshi, Anshuman Vaish, Amrita James, Rajesh Upadyay (presently the music teacher in DPS, R.K. Puram, and helping the school-choir win most inter-school music competitions in Delhi), Anka Nath, Arjun Awasthi, Carl Nazareth, Kushal Gundhi, D.J., Sukrit Silas, Mable Sara Joseph, Aisha Lovely George-whose is the leading voice in the school song which has been recorded and played when the assembly is conducted in the class rooms, Gracious Gomes, Raymond Rozario, Ravneet Oberoi Vasav Vasisht……………………….the list does not end here.