Kelley & Clark in Concert • Boston Preview Event

OSTON — Friday, September 29, 2017 • 7:00 p. m.  • Richard Kelley, trumpet, and composer/organist Richard J. Clark team up again at St. Cecilia Church, Boston in a concert of American composers Clark, Hovhaness, Pinkham, and Sowerby. This concert offers Boston audiences a preview of their upcoming performance at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York on All Souls Day (11.2.2017 @7pm). St. Cecilia Church is an extraordinary sacred space with its opulent acoustics and the Smith & Gilbert Organ (IV/53 3,023 pipes.)

Richard Kelley, trumpet, has been a soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and plays with the Boston Pops. He has performed with artists such as Andrea Bocelli, Ray Charles, Steven Tyler, and James Taylor. He can be heard on a variety of recordings including the Oscar and Golden Globe-winning soundtrack to Disney’s Pocahontas and Stephen Paulus’ Grammy-nominated Concerto for Two Trumpets and Band.

“The career of trumpeter Richard Kelley is not only a testament to the versatility of his instrument, but also to the ability of one individual to excel across the broadest possible range of music.” — Brian McCreath, WCRB

Composer and organist Richard J. Clark’s eclectic appearances range from the Celebrity Series of Boston and the Boston Philharmonic to Jive Records (Sony BMG), Fenway Park, and the New York Songwriter Circle at the historic Bitter End in Greenwich Village. Clark’s compositions have been heard worldwide including performances under the baton of Fernando Malvar-Ruiz, The American Boychoir, EWTN, SiriusXM, and the Russian premiere of Ascent to Freedom by organist Mark Husey. He is the Director of Music & Organist at St. Cecilia Parish, Boston, and St. Mary’s Chapel, Boston College.

These concerts will feature two works composed specifically for Richard Kelley: Pinkham’s Scenes and Clark’s Requiem pour une américaine à Paris. Recorded by Kelley and Clark, Requiem has been featured on SiriusXM’s Sounds from the Spires, various radio programs around the US, and will be performed at Saint-Eustache in Paris in 2018.

Requiem – Order CD
Requiem – Order from iTunes

When: Friday, September 29, 2017 • 7:00PM

Where: St. Cecilia Church, 18 Belvidere St., BOSTON, Massachusetts 02115
Admission: FREE
Event website: www.stceciliaboston.org
Press Contact: Mark Donohoe
Phone: 617-536-4548 ext. 115
Email: RJC AT rjcceciliamusic DOT com

Sacred Music for Christmas on “Sounds from the Spires”

RECENTLY joined Dr. Jennifer Pascual, Director of Music for Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City, on her program Sounds from the Spires. I am very fortunate to have been on the show several times. This will explain any drop in the ratings.

Pascual’s weekly show can be heard on SIRIUSXM 129 Radio, The Catholic Channel, Saturday, 11pm-12am, Sunday, 6am-7am and 8pm-9pm (All Eastern times)

You can listen to a PODCAST of this interview broadcast on 12.4.2016:



MUSIC FEATURED ON THIS PROGRAM:

Light Upon the World | Richard J. Clark, baritone; Produced by Paul Umbach | Available on iTunes and CD Baby.

Communion Antiphons for Christmas | SATB, Organ, Trumpet, Assembly • World Library Publications • Recordings Directed by Paul French

Madonna & Child | Organ • recorded on the Smith & Gilbert Organ (IV/52) at St. Cecilia Church, Boston

Although this conversation with my children happened before a prior interview, the story bears repeating:

My six-year-old son put me in my place before a radio interview. My daughter, who was eight, said, “Daddy is lucky because he is famous because he is being interviewed.” My son who was six responded: “No, he’s not famous. Never, ever! Only God is famous.” This, coming from a boy who loves getting into mischief, especially if it gets a laugh from his siblings and disapproval from his parents. But here he was dead serious and spot on!

Soli Deo gloria!

New Organ Work • Madonna & Child

HE CREATIVE process often takes time to evolve, always in surprising ways, and sometimes takes on a life of its own even after a premiere.

I was honored to be part of a wonderful concert with so many amazing musicians. It happened to be on Father’s Day. With that in mind, I just had to compose something for my two-month-old daughter. Composing variations on her name would have sufficed. But I could not shake the significant inclusion of variations on the Mode I Chant, Ave Maris Stella, which comprises much of the middle section of this work. Ave Maris Stella became its anchor—the grounding upon which the child’s theme could flourish.

The premiere was at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston, Massachusetts on the 101-rank E. & G. G. Hook & Hastings Organ. At the premiere, the piece was titled for my daughter, “Variations on the Name Adeline Grace,. But so many after the concert asked me, “Wasn’t that Ave Maris Stella in there?” Yes, it was most assuredly there.

FTER A FEW DAYS, I have had a better understanding of what has transpired. It took me—the composer—to realize this is really a work about mother and child. There is the gentle cradling of the child in a mother’s lap. But there is also the heaviness in the child’s theme—a premonition of a Cross to bear. As Jesus said, “If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” (Luke 8:23)

Note the word Jesus uses: daily. This goes to our calling in life. We are all called to be a disciple of Jesus. It is the mother and father who nurture the child in the Faith, to be a true disciple of Jesus.

In the end, this work was perhaps equally inspired by my daughter and her extraordinary mother. What I did not initially understand, now makes sense as a musical portrait of Mary and Jesus. One can hear the heaviness, but also the lightness and comfort Jesus found in his own Mother, who is also our Mother. In both of them we find comfort. In Jesus we find salvation.

Recorded on the Smith & Gilbert Organ (1999) at Saint Cecilia Church, Boston, Massachusetts. Recording by Evan Landry Score available at RJC Cecilia Music.

“Sounds from the Spires” with Jennifer Pascual • SiriusXM Radio

RECENTLY joined Dr. Jennifer Pascual, Director of Music for Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City and host of Sounds from the Spires, at the SiriusXM Studio in Midtown Manhattan. Her weekly program can be heard on SIRIUSXM 129 Radio, The Catholic Channel.

My six-year-old son put me in my place before our interview. My daughter, who is eight, said, “Daddy is lucky because he is famous because he is being interviewed.” My son responded: “No, he’s not famous. Never, ever! Only God is famous.” This, coming from a boy who loves getting into mischief, especially if it gets a laugh from his siblings and disapproval from his parents. But here he was dead serious and spot on!

PODCAST Broadcast on 2.28.2016:

PLEASE READ MY MIND
Don’t believe everything you hear on the radio. As my choirs well know, it is a requirement that they must read my mind during rehearsal; not everything that comes out of my mouth is reliable. As such, there are two corrections here: 1) “I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life” is from Psalm 27, not Psalm 122 as stated. 2) Our Lady of the Atonement R. C. Church is in San Antonio, Texas, not Houston. I knew that. I’ve always known that. But I said Houston. Please read my mind.

MUSIC FEATURED ON THIS PROGRAM:

Communion Antiphons for Lent | SATB, Organ, Assembly • World Library Publications • Recordings Directed by Paul French

Variations on Misereris Omnium | Introit for Ash Wednesday • St Cecilia Schola • Variations played on the Smith & Gilbert Organ at St. Cecilia Church, Boston

By the Rivers of Babylon | Allesandra Cionco, soprano; Michael Dahlberg, cello; R. Clark, piano

Magna Opera Domini | Commissioned for the ordination of Bishop Steven Lopes. • Recording Directed by Edmund Murray

All Souls | Requiem for Trumpet and Organ

equiem pour une américaine à Paris is a seven-movement work composed for trumpet and organ, it is reminiscent of an early Twentieth Century French Romantic style. Although quite faithful to many of the Gregorian Chants, this is not a liturgical work, but a concert work. It would be difficult to match the music to the liturgical action. However, I hope this may be a helpful and hopeful meditation on God’s merciful love, and our hopeful expectation of eternal life in the words of Credo quod Redemptor: “I believe that my Redeemer lives, and that on the last day, I shall rise from earth and in my flesh I shall behold God my Savior.”

The CD is available for purchase ($9.99) and for download ($6.93)
Score available at RJC Cecilia Music

YouTube:  I. Introit | Requiem aeternam”
YouTube:  II. Gradual | Requiem aeternam
YouTube:  III. Dies Irae
YouTube:  IV. Jubilis!
YouTube:  V. Offertory | Domine Jesu Christe”
YouTube:  VI. Communion | Lux aeterna
YouTube:  VII. Last Farewell

HIS WORK WAS COMPOSED for Richard Kelley, trumpet. Certainly, the trumpet is rarely, if ever associated with Gregorian Chant. However, Mr. Kelley possesses unusually extraordinary grace, dignity, and humility, all which sing beautifully through his playing. (Listen especially to IV. Lux Aeterna and the quote of “In Paradisum” in the VII. Last Farewell.)

The one movement, which is a departure from the Requiem mass, is the “IV. Jubilis!” It briefly quotes the Tract (which of course comes before the Sequence in the mass–the order is reversed in this concert piece.) It is also loosely based on the Post-Vatican II addition of the “Alleluia” The “Jubilis!” theme returns at the end of the final movement, in hopeful expectation of eternal life in heaven.

ICHARD KELLEY, TRUMPET was a soloist with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops 1984 and 1985 at the age of 16 and 17. He studied at the Juilliard School in NYC, he is a former member of Boston Brass Quintet and a current member of the Brass Band of Battle Creek. His credits include Broadway shows in NYC, TV ads, and film soundtracks. He has performed with artists such as Andrea Bocelli, Ray Charles, Steven Tyler, James Taylor, Glenn Close, Bernadette Peters, Jennifer Aniston, and Vanessa Williams. Conductor of the New England Swing in Nashua New Hampshire, he now plays frequently with the Boston Pops.

• CD Cover Photography by Rev. James Martin, SJ | Window from St. Mary’s Chapel, Boston College
• Recording Engineer: Evan Landry
• Mastering: Paul Umbach
• Richard Clark played the 1999 Smith & Gilbert Organ Recorded at St. Cecilia Church, Boston

Requiem pour une américaine à Paris has been featured on “Sounds from the Spires” on SIRIUS XM 129 Radio, The Catholic Channel.

Richard Kelley and I had the opportunity to speak with the program’s host, Dr. Jennifer Pascual, Director of Music for Saint Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City.

• PODCAST • Listen here to the program broadcast on 10.6.2013:

The Death of a Parish | A Promise of New Life?

MONG THE MOST PAINFUL spiritual experiences many Catholics suffer is the closure of their parish. This pain is especially acute for those who have invested years or decades of their lives in their community. Some even have generations of family history tied up in a parish. So devastating is the loss that for many the grieving process is akin to that of a death in the family.

But this is a cross that some bear and others do not. Each parish has a unique story and unique gifts to offer. Some are material, but the greatest asset of each parish is its people. But when a parish closes, the community is left in mourning. The psalmist states: “Send forth your Spirit and all things shall be created anew; and you shall renew the face of the earth.” (Psalm 104:30). Is there a promise of new life after such loss? There is no easy fix; the Holy Spirit will guide such rebirth.

HIS SCENE HAS BEEN PLAYING OUT all over the United States and many parts of the world. One such tragically sad closure is that of the Holy Trinity (German) R. C. Church in Boston’s South End. It was exceptionally unique and beautiful. Established in 1844, the current building was dedicated in 1877. The parish was closed in 2008 and the church building recently put up for sale. Serving the German community, it was also home for many years to the Traditional Latin Mass. (This is especially notable prior to Pope Benedict’s 2007 Apostolic Letter Summorum Pontificum on the celebration of the Roman Rite according to the Missal of 1962).

Holy Trinity was one of several churches in downtown Boston built in the nineteenth century to serve an enormous immigrant population. These edifices, many within a few short blocks of each other, are larger than most cathedrals throughout the United States. Many issues, some complex and some tragic, leave the nineteenth and twentieth century configurations of the Archdiocese hopelessly out of date and unsustainable.

UT NEW LIFE BEGINS TO BREATHE ELSEWHERE: I received a phone call from Fr. Jonathan Gaspar, Director of the Office of Divine Worship and Priest Secretary to His Eminence Seán Cardinal O’Malley. The historic organ at Holy Trinity Church, an E. & G. G. Hook, Opus 858, ca. 1877 was being removed in five days in order for it to be preserved. Before it was to be dismantled, he asked me to come in for a look and to record the instrument one last time.

The hope is that this instrument will continue to lead the people in singing God’s praises in a brand new Neo-Gothic style chapel being built by the Archdiocese near Boston’s newly developing waterfront. Although not designated as a parish, Our Lady of Good Voyage Chapel will serve a great need in that location. Pending the outcome of fundraising, this organ will have an opportunity lead the Church in sacred song again.

As I began to play the forty-five rank instrument, I thought of the generations who came here to worship God. For one hundred sixty-four years, this parish nourished the faithful. Playing these last notes in this church was a sacred privilege I did not deserve.

HAT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A SHORT ten-minute visit tuned into nearly two hours. The organ was in shockingly good condition for having not been serviced in six years. (This is a testament to a highly robust music program that featured several ongoing choirs.) After six years, the tuning was remarkable except for some reeds, which one expects. The chests were in astoundingly good shape. One hundred thirty-seven years after it was first built, this instrument wants to sing on! It must.

Typical of the extraordinary craftsmanship of the Hook organs are its deep and rich colors. I savored the distinctively warm flutes and strings supported by beautiful 8’ foundations. The reeds were colorful, and the instrument, well balanced. Rebuilt and revoiced by Conrad Olson in the 1950’s, the instrument is highly versatile, capable of leading hymns as well as accompanying chant and choral music.

Exploring various colors, I wandered into improvisations of hymns and chants I thought fitting for a last farewell. Among them were Praise to the Lord, and For All the Saints to honor all those who came before to worship here. In Paradisum and Lux aeterna were fitting for what felt like a funeral for the organ and for this magnificent church. Finally, I share with you the very last notes I played that day, an improvisation on Ave Maris Stella. Its somewhat mournful tone is fitting. The final phrases linger on a bit too long, as I did not want to leave.

The bells in the tower, (which originate from New Orleans during the Civil War–another intriguing story) as you can hear, still work beautifully:

HOSE I MET WORKING ONSITE treated this former place of worship with reverence and dignity. They were proud of the construction from local puddingstone and granite. They went about their business with a sense of respect and awe for the sacred objects they were sadly removing.

But there is a sacred end for the sacred objects being removed: the stained glass windows, the pews, and all the woodwork that covered the walls will be re-purposed in other churches and perhaps some in the seaport chapel. The extraordinarily beautiful high altar is currently being installed at the St Joseph Cathedral in Manchester, New Hampshire. The Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston is receiving many of the statues and has already been using the beautiful baptismal font. Perhaps these are small but important ways to honor the countless faithful who worshipped at Holy Trinity.

R. GASPAR PLAYED A FEW LAST NOTES on the organ before we left. Then, stepping out into the bright sunlight, we knew we would never set foot inside again. He later said it felt like we were witnessing the death of a church. Its beauty went far beyond appearances; it shone as a beacon of Christ’s light for generations of worshippers. Its greatest beauty was its people. This is why it feels like a death. But will there be new life?

Perhaps this story reminds us of the frailty of the physical world, of earthly possessions. But tied up in this corporeal existence are real memories, spiritual journeys, and lives filled with joy and suffering. We are brusquely reminded that the Kingdom of God is not here. Our hope and trust is entirely with the Lord. But God does not leave us comfortless. We are sisters and brothers in the Universal Church. We are united as one in the Body of Christ and united in Christ’s love. Congregavit nos in unum Christi amor.

Suffering, pain, and loss may not be abated. But the suffering of those who carry the cross often gain greatly in wisdom. As Jesus promises to send the Holy Spirit, he said “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.” (John: 18-19)

Requiem pour une américaine à Paris



NE OF THE MOST powerful spiritual experiences I ever had was the Requiem Mass in the Extraordinary Form at the 2012 Sacred Music Colloquium in Salt Lake City, Utah. This is saying a lot, as many of the liturgies at the Colloquia, whether in the Ordinary or Extraordinary Form, have shaken me to the core; I have been overwhelmed with an unspeakable sense of awe, mystery, and joy. Even these words are inadequate.

Requiem pour une américaine à Paris is a direct outgrowth of this experience. It is based largely on the Gregorian Chant Propers of the Requiem Mass. It is dedicated to the memory of my beloved aunt and Godmother, Anita Cipriani, who passed on The Feast of the Sacred Heart, just prior to the 2012 Sacred Music Colloquium. It was premiered on All Souls Day in 2012.

A seven-movement work composed for trumpet and organ, it is reminiscent of an early Twentieth Century French Romantic style. Although quite faithful to many of the Gregorian Chants, this is not a liturgical work, but a concert work. It would be difficult to match the music to the liturgical action. However, I hope this may be a helpful and hopeful meditation on God’s merciful love, and our hopeful expectation of eternal life in the words of Credo quod Redemptor: “I believe that my Redeemer lives, and that on the last day, I shall rise from earth and in my flesh I shall behold God my Savior.”

The CD is available for purchase ($9.99) and for download ($6.93) (Amazon, CD Baby, iTunes, etc.). Or you may listen and follow the scores below on YouTube. (Score available at RJC Cecilia Music)

YouTube:  I. Introit | Requiem aeternam”


YouTube:  II. Gradual | Requiem aeternam


YouTube:  III. Dies Irae


YouTube:  IV. Jubilis!


YouTube:  V. Offertory | Domine Jesu Christe”


YouTube:  VI. Communion | Lux aeterna


YouTube:  VII. Last Farewell



HIS WORK WAS COMPOSED for Richard Kelley, trumpet. Certainly, the trumpet is rarely, if ever associated with Gregorian Chant. However, Mr. Kelley possesses unusually extraordinary grace, dignity, and humility, all which sing beautifully through his playing. (Listen especially to IV. Lux Aeterna and the quote of “In Paradisum” in the VII. Last Farewell.)

The one movement, which is a departure from the Requiem mass, is the “IV. Jubilis!” It briefly quotes the Tract (which of course comes before the Sequence in the mass–the order is reversed in this concert piece.) It is also loosely based on the Post-Vatican II addition of the “Alleluia” The “Jubilis!” theme returns at the end of the final movement, in hopeful expectation of eternal life in heaven.

ICHARD KELLEY, TRUMPET was a soloist with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops 1984 and 1985 at the age of 16 and 17. He studied at the Juilliard School in NYC, he is a former member of Boston Brass Quintet and a current member of the Brass Band of Battle Creek. His credits include Broadway shows in NYC, TV ads, and film soundtracks. He has performed with artists such as Andrea Bocelli, Ray Charles, Steven Tyler, James Taylor, Glenn Close, Bernadette Peters, Jennifer Aniston, and Vanessa Williams. Conductor of the New England Swing in Nashua New Hampshire, he now plays frequently with the Boston Pops.

NITA CIPRIANI was a French teacher at Hunter College Elementary School and Convent of the Sacred Heart, both in Manhattan. A consummate educator, she studied in Paris and spent much of her life there. In 1992, she was honored by the French Government at the French Consulate in New York as a Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques, a decoration founded by Emperor Napoleon I to honor outstanding academics. Her joy of life and her deep faith in God sing on.

• Pictured: Anita Cipriani and Richard,  New York City, 1996

• CD Cover Photography by Rev. James Martin, SJ | Window from St. Mary’s Chapel, Boston College
• Recording Engineer: Evan Landry
• Mastering: Paul Umbach
• Richard Clark played the 1999 Smith & Gilbert Organ Recorded at St. Cecilia Church, Boston