About this blogger:
Dr. Alfred Calabrese is a conductor, educator, composer, scholar, and church musician. Having worked in academia for two decades, he felt called to enter full-time work in the Catholic Church, and since 2007 has directed the music at Saint Rita Catholic Church. He and his wife live in Dallas, TX. They have two grown children.
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“Although the mass contains great instruction for the faithful people, nevertheless, it has not seemed expedient to the Fathers, that it should be every where celebrated in the vulgar tongue. Wherefore, the ancient usage of each church, and the rite approved of by the holy Roman Church, the mother and mistress of all churches, being in each place retained; and, that the sheep of Christ may not suffer hunger, nor the little ones ask for bread, and there be none to break it unto them, the holy Synod charges pastors, and all who have the cure of souls, that they frequently, during the celebration of mass, expound either by themselves, or others, some portion of those things which are read at mass, and that, amongst the rest, they explain some mystery of this most holy sacrifice, especially on the Lord's days and festivals.”
— Council of Trent (17 September 1562)

May 2016 • Major Choral Event In Dallas!
published 18 January 2016 by Dr. Alfred Calabrese

847 Frank La Rocca HIS EXCITING NEW major work by composer Frank La Rocca will receive its world premiere on Saturday, May 21, 2016 at 8:00pm in Dallas, Texas:

  * A ROSE IN WINTER • The life of Saint Rita of Cascia

Dr. La Rocca’s 90-minute oratorio for chorus, orchestra, and soloists was commissioned by Saint Rita Catholic Church (URL) in Dallas, and is the brainchild of Alfred Calabrese, director of music at the parish. The original libretto is by Matthew Lickona. Four outstanding American soloists will take part in the world premiere:

SOPRANOMelanie Sarakatsannis
BARITONESumner Thompson
TENORBrian Downen
BASSDaniel Cole

The title role—that of Saint Rita—will be Ms. Sarakatsannis. The professional orchestra will be joined by the St. Rita Festival Choir, and the conductor will be Alfred Calabrese (BIO).

HE CONCERT on 21 May will be preceded by a three-day conference entitled “High Above the Stars: Sainthood, Beauty, and Catholic Artistic Expression.” The conference (May 19-21) is designed for musicians, artists, poets, theologians, and Catholic laity, and deals with the creation of sacred music and art, the promotion of beauty, and the quest for sainthood in everyday life. Masterclasses will be held for conductors, composers, and poets. Speakers include: Carmen-Helena Téllez, (University of Notre Dame); David Clayton, artist, writer and educator, and a regular contributor to the New Liturgical Movement website; Ron and Kathryn Rombs (University of Dallas); and the Very Rev. Michael F. DiGregorio, O.S.A, Prior Provincial of the Augustinians of the Saint Thomas of Villanova Province. Fr. DiGregorio is the former director of the National Shrine of St. Rita in Philadelphia and pastor of the parish.

All are invited and encouraged to come to Dallas for this event. A website is being developed for the concert and conference. There you will be able to find registration materials, a complete schedule of events, biographies of all of the principle players, information on travel to and from Dallas, housing options, and fun things to do and see while you’re here. All proceedings will be held on the north Dallas campus of Saint Rita parish, which is a mere 15 minutes from DFW Airport.

Please join us in May for this tremendously exciting moment in the Catholic musical world!