20th September 1795
7th November 1857
Charles Zeuner was an organist and composer active in Germany for a time, and then inBoston and Philadelphia in the United States. He was baptized as Heinrich Christoph, but changed his name when he came to the United States, probably in 1830, though some reports say 1824. He studied withJohann Nepomuk Hummel and Michael Gotthard Fischer. He settled in Boston where he made his debut as organist, pianist and vocalist on 13 February 1830. He was organist for Park Street Church and the Handel and Haydn Society 1830-1837. His oratorio “The Feast of Tabernacles,” which was published in 1832, was premiered by the Boston Academy of Music in 1837 at the Odeon. It was the first work of its kind composed in America. He was appointed president of the Handel and Haydn Society in 1838. A disagreement with the trustees led to his resignation from the Handel and Hayden Society in 1839. He departed for Philadelphia where he was organist for St. Andrew's Episcopal Church and then Arch Street Presbyterian Church. For several years, he showed symptoms of insanity, which, however, were not thought to be serious, but on a trip to West Philadelphia he committed suicide.