Episode No. 43  Saturday, July 28, 2018  Maria Cristina (Kit) Navarro, Soprano soloist, Soprano Section Leader, Teacher, Performer

Superstar Soprano Maria Cristina (“Kit”) Navarro is in high demand everywhere!  Not only is she a busy staff soprano and cantor at Christ Cathedral, but is a frequent soloist at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, with Pacific Chorale and the one-time Pacific Opera.  She performs in her native Philippines, in Europe, and all-over Southern California!  She is at home on the opera stage as well as singing sacred oratorios, singing in choirs and serving as a cantor at church.  On the show, she describes the differences between opera and oratorio, and even speaks of her favorite roles!  She is a teacher of music and fitness.   She has several upcoming performances:   Cristine will again be the featured soloist with Pacific Chorale’s annual Choral Festival, August 12, 2018, under the baton of Dr. Robert Istad.  This year’s Choral Festival concert is all Mozart and Ms. Navarro will have solos in the Mozart Vespers, and sing the famous Alleluia from “Exsultate Jubilate”.   For free tickets to this performance:  https://www.scfta.org/events/2018/pacific-chorales-choral-festival.
She will be performing with the Philippine Chamber Singers this coming August 17, 2018 at the Disney Concert Hall.  You can also hear Kit almost any Sunday here at Christ Cathedral at the 930 AM Mass and she will be featured in the “Gloria” by Antonio Vivaldi in this year’s Christmas at the Cathedral, December 14, 2018 at 7:30 PM.  For tickets and information: ChristCathedralMusic.org

MUSIC:  Requiem.(movement 5)  Johannes Brahms.   Soprano Cristine Navarro
MUSIC:  Opera, Magic Flute. (Der Holle Rache). Wolfgang Mozart. Soprano Cristine Navarro
MUSIC:  La Capinera. Italian Art Song.  Soprano Cristine Navarro
MUSIC:  La Boheme. (Quando m’en vo) Puccini  Soprano Cristine Navarro
MUSIC:  Carmina Burana. (#17 In Trutina – Tempis Est Locumdum) Carl Orf  Pacific Choral Choral Festival Choir 2017,  Soprano Cristine Navarro


Episode No. 42  Saturday, July 21, 2018  Daniel Ficarri, Organist, Composer, Juilliard student, Organ Scholar at St. Paul the Apostle in NYC, Founder of “Sacred sounds at St. Paul’s”; David L. Ball. Assistant Director of Music and Organist, Christ Cathedral

Daniel is another of the many success stories of the great Juilliard teacher, Paul Jacobs.  However, unlike the incredible organists who have filled America’s greatest churches and have come from this great institution and this amazing teacher, Daniel is not just another super-star organist.  Daniel is an already famed composer;  a commissioned composer at that!  You will hear from this spectacular young musician, as he talks about his latest commission, this time, a piece for the dedication of the new Dobson pipe organ at the famed St. Thomas Church in New York.  This piece was commissioned by the British music journal, Choir and Organ, for this very special occasion.  Daniel was featured in the latest issue of this magazine with a great article and even the possibility of downloading his latest piece.  On the radio, he is joined by our very own organist and Juilliard graduate, David L. Ball.  It is David who actually commissioned Daniel to write two other organ pieces. Enjoy these two wonderful young organists as they talk about commissioning music, composing it and performing it.  One of our best shows yet.  You will no doubt hear lots more about both of these astonishing talents!

http://www.danielficarri.com  http://www.davidballorgan.com

MUSIC: Carillon de Westminster Louis Vierne   Daniel Ficarri, Organist
MUSIC: Prelude in D Major  Daniel Ficarri, Composer and Organist  recorded at Hitchcock Presbyterian Church, Scarsdale, NY   Commissioned by David L. Ball
MUSIC: Suite for Organ No. 1  Adagio   Daniel Ficarri, Composer and Organist  recorded at St. Paul the Apostle, New York City    Commissioned by David L. Ball
MUSIC: Suite for Organ No. 1  Toccata   Daniel Ficarri, Composer and Organist  recorded at St. Paul the Apostle, New York City    Commissioned by David L. Ball
MUSIC:  Exsultation  Daniel Ficarri, Composer and Organist  recorded at St. Vincent Ferrer, New York City    Commissioned by Choir and Organ Magazine


Episode No. 41  Saturday, July 14, 2018 Brian Sawyers, Organ Curator of the great Hazel Wright Organ, Musician, Composer.   

Enjoy a wonderful discussion with one of the busiest organ men in the world.  Brian takes care of the Hazel Wright Organ, 5th largest organ in the world, and the Fred Swann Organ in the Arboretum.  And if Hazel and Fred were not enough, he cares for several other huge organs here in Southern California and elsewhere.  They include First Congregational, Covenant Church in Long Beach, Segerstrom Music Center and several others.  Brian has a long history with the Crystal Cathedral hearing the organs of the cathedral with Richard Unfried, Fred Swann.  Brian took his first organ lesson with Cathedral Organist, Mark Thallander.  His first tuning experiences were with Richard Unfried holding keys and his beginning tuning.  He later worked under John Wilson with the Henderson Wilson Organ Company.  Most of all, Brain talks about just what it will take to put Hazel back in Christ Cathedral.  He will no doubt be a frequent guest as we get closer to Hazel’s great re-dedication.  Brian began piano as a 6 year old, organ at 13, and his constant fascination with switches and buttons!!  He is the PERFECT person to care for Hazel.  Some of todays was even composed by Brian!!

MUSIC:  Symphony No 6, finale (movement V)    Charles Marie Widor     Peter Baicchi, organist   CD:  Music Under Glass, recorded on “Hazel”
MUSIC:  Toccata on “Amazing Grace”  Christopher Pardini, composer and performer   CD:  Chris Pardini and Friends, recorded on “Hazel”
MUSIC:  Clazz   a Jazz composition by Brian Sawyers, with Brian at the organ!
MUSIC:  Symphony No. 6, cantible (movement IV)  Charles Marie Widor   Peter Baicchi, organist   (you will hear some of the birds who lived in the Crystal Cathedral on the recording.  CD:  Music Under Glass
MUSIC: Rising Sun  Brian Sawyers, composer   Peter Baicchi, organist   CD:  Music Under Glass


Episode No. 40 Saturday June 23, 2018 Dr. Christoph Bull, Organist-in-Residence at First Congregational Church, Los Angeles, Composer, Musician Extraordinaire.

Enjoy a fascinating hour with one of Los Angeles’ most interesting and versatile musicians!! Born in Mannheim, Germany, Christoph Bull has performed and recorded around the world, including France, Switzerland, Austria, Denmark, Northern Ireland, Russia, India, Taiwan and El Salvador, at national and regional conventions of the American Guild of Organists and at venues such as Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Lincoln Center in New York City, Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa, the Cathedrals of Moscow, Saint-Denis and Salzburg as well as rock clubs like The Viper Room, The Roxy and The Whisky in Los Angeles.

Hear how a musician of this caliber comes to be a musician. Christoph improvised his first melodies on the piano at the age of five and gave his first organ recitals and rock concerts with a band at the age of twelve. He’s collaborated with leading orchestras, conductors, choirs and ensembles including the Los Angeles Master Chorale, James Conlon, Carl St.Clair, Pacific Chorale, Pacific Symphony and Grammy-winning Southwest Chamber Music.

His organ teachers were Cherry Rhodes, Hermann Schäffer, Ludwig Dörr, Samuel Swartz, Christoph Schöner and Paul Jordan. He also participated in master courses with Marie-Claire Alain, Guy Bovet, Craig Cramer and Rudi Lutz.

Christoph Bull is the creator of the genre-crossing, collaborative multi-media series organica, combining traditional and contemporary music. His collaborators include DJs, video artists, live painter, instrumentalists and singers. He has also contributed to projects by Steven Spielberg, Robin Williams, Harry Connick Jr., George Clinton and Bootsy Collins (Parliament Funkadelic), Cindy Lauper, Lili Haydn and Nishat Khan and opened the organ series at Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa and Villa Aurora in the Pacific Palisades.

His solo album First & Grand, the world premiere recording of the Walt Disney Concert Hall Organ, was celebrated by the international trade press and showcases the stylistic versatility and expressiveness of his playing. His original song “Peace” was featured on the benefit album 2 Unite All together with songs by Peter Gabriel, Stewart Copeland and others. His song “Ali” was featured on the website for the collector’s book about Muhammad Ali by Taschen.

Christoph Bull is based in Los Angeles. In addition to his activities as a concert organist, composer, singer-songwriter, speaker, university organist and organ professor at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), he is organist-in-residence at First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, playing one of the largest pipe organs in the world.

Outside of music, Christoph is interested in politics, theology, cinema and sports. He’s read the whole Bible, Koran, Bhagavad Gita and Tao Te Ching, watched every Seinfeld episode and all Star Wars movies in a row in the chronological order of the storyline. He’s run the L.A. Marathon several times and won the National German Youth Championship in Baseball with his team BC Tornados Mannheim.

Information & Contact: www.christophbull.com


MUSIC: Prelude in G Major BWV 541 Johann Sebastian Bach. recorded on Bach’s 333rd birthday!! Christoph Bull, organist. First Congregation Church organ.

MUSIC: Jupiter Symphony Wolfgang Mozart transcribed and performed by Christoph Bull performed at Royce Hall, UCLA.

MUSIC: Nothing Compares to Prince arranged and performed by Christoph Bull on the First Congregational church organ.

MUSIC: Victimae Paschali Laudes Gregorian chant improvised by Christoph Bull at Hollywood United Methodist Church

MUSIC: Psalm 69   Christoph Bull, composer and performed on a Hammond B3.


Episode 39   June 9, 2018   All things Chant!! with our chant experts, Matthew Gray and David Koch from the Mission Basilica San Juan

Enjoy an entire episode of MUSIC FROM THE TOWER devoted to Chant with two chant experts, Matthew Gray, Director of Music, and David Koch, Chant Master, both from the Mission Basilica of San Juan Capistrano. They shared excepts from their new chant CD: “Chant, Communion Chants from the Liturgical Year”.   Since the first centuries of the church, chant was the primary music sung in Catholic Liturgies. With the Second Vatican Council and the use of vernacular languages, came the music of many countries and traditions. In recent years cathedral and parishes around the country have rediscovered the beauty and the awe which chant can provide in the Mass. Today’s guests bring a wonderful insight into how this is being done Sunday after Sunday at the Mission and can be (and should be) done in every parish. Learn about the different types of chant, the church modes, the Propers and the Ordinary of the Mass from these two men who have studied it and performed it. It is a fascinating look at this great treasury of music of the Catholic Church.

CD: Chant, Communion Chants from the Liturgical Year, performed by the Men of the Basilica Mixed Ensemble. Matthew Gray, Director of Music Ministries and David Koch, Chant Master.


MUSIC: Jerusalem surge   communion chant for the Second Sunday of Advent

MUSIC: Pater, si non potest   communion chant for Palm Sunday

MUSIC: Pascha nostrum   communion chant for Easter Sunday

MUSIC: Factus est repente   communion chant for Pentecost

MUSIC: Comedite pinguia     communion chant for Ordinary Time


Episode 38   May 26, 2018 Manuel J. Rosales, Organ Builder

Manuel J. Rosales is the President and Tonal Director of Rosales Pipe organ Company, Inc. He was born in New York City, but raised in Los Angeles. On his 14th birthday Manuel’s father took him to see the movie Fantasiaand he became enthralled with the music of J. S. Bach. An opportunity to work with his church’s organ tuner led to an immediate realization that pipe organ building was going to be his life’s work. He served his apprenticeship with the Schlicker Organ Company of Buffalo, New York, from 1968 until 1973.

In 1973, Manuel Rosales returned to Los Angeles to serve as the area service representative for the Schlicker Company and established his own firm, Rosales Pipe Organ Service. In 1980, Rosales Organ Builders, Inc., was formed during the construction of his Opus 9, the firm’s largest instrument to that time, for the First Presbyterian Church in Granada Hills, California. The success of this two-manual 32-stop instrument led to several other contracts including his now-famous Opus 11, a 52-stop instrument for Trinity Episcopal Cathedral of Portland, Oregon.

Hear about Manuel’s many collaborations with some of the world’s most famous pipe organ builders. He has studied organs from Europe to Mexico and has built some outstanding instruments throughout the United States. Of course, his most famous instrument is the grand organ in the Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. Enjoy a fascinating visit with this genius of the art of pipe organ building and hear music by some of the great organists who have performed on his amazing instruments.

MUSIC: Fantasia on a Theme of Gustav Holst Aaron David Miller (2016) Daryl Robinson, Organist   Disney Concert Hall   American Fantasia

MUSIC: Grand Chorus with Thunder Michel Corette   David Britton, Organist Trinity Episcopal Church, Portland   Rosales Organ, Op 11

MUSIC: Allegro José Lidon Guy Bovet, Organist Mission San José, Fremont, CA   Rosales Organ, Op 14

MUSIC: Finale from Symphony No. 3 Louis Vierne   George Baker, Organist Trinity Episcopal Church, Portland   Rosales Organ, Op 11


Episode 37 May 19, 2018 César Sanchez, Tenor, Opera Star, Educator, and Chef!!!

Explore the career of this wonderful young singer from his early days in Tijuana to the opera stages of the world. From his very humble beginnings in his parish choir, continued education in high school at the school for liturgical music, to his time at the famous Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, this singer has given everything to his art. He went from being inspired by a recording of Placido Domingo, which he played over and over as a child, to actually being able to work with him as a professional; he fulfilled one of his life’s dream! From winning the Darclee International Vocal Competition in Romania to coaching at the Academy for Vocal Arts in Philadelphia, César has proven his voice is something special indeed. Deeply rooted in his Catholic faith, he believes that is voice and his many spectacular opportunities have been indeed a gift from God.   Whether singing in Mexico City for a crowd of over 14,000 or more recently in lead roles for the Tampa Opera, César’s voice continues to amaze all who hear it. We have been privileged to have had Cesar perform three times for Christ Cathedral Concerts, with more performances coming as we prepare for the festivities of the dedication of Christ Cathedral. In addition to his busy concert schedule, César’s other passion, from his parents and grandparents, is cooking!!

MUSIC: La Donna e mobile   Rigoletto   Giuseppe Verdi César Sanchez, tenor

MUSIC: Granada   Agustin Lara   César Sanchez, tenor

MUSIC: Recondita Armonia Tosca   Giacomo Puccini   César Sanchez, tenor

MUSIC: Nessum Dorma Turandot   Giacomo Puccini   César Sanchez, tenor


Episode 36 April 28, 2018 Paul M. French, Organist, Conductor, Church Musician, Composer, Arranger, and Pueri Cantores Board President

Conductor Paul French was in Southern California to conduct two Children’s Choir Festivals for Pueri Cantores. While in town, we were lucky enough to have him as a guest on MUSIC FROM THE TOWER. Hear from Chicagoan Paul French, the Music Director at Chicago’s Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, where he leads a thriving choral program for both children and adults. Mr. French recently stepped down after twelve seasons as the music director of the William Ferris Chorale, a 24-voice Chicago based professional choir specializing in accessible compositions of the twentieth century, and whose cutting-edge arts programming regularly garnered excellent reviews.

Mr. French has studied composition, chant, conducting and organ at St. John’s University (Collegeville, MN), Northwestern University and the Pontificio Instituto di Musica Sacra in Rome. A composer of more than 200 instrumental and choral works including pieces for adult and children’s choirs, voice, organ, brass and orchestra, he serves on the music advisory staff of the Archdiocese of Chicago and has been a faculty member of the National Association of Pastoral Musicians Choir Director Institutes for over 10 years. Additionally, he serves as Director of Choral Recordings for World Library Publications and is Editor of the Pueri Cantores Choral Series of distinguished choral literature for youth choirs. He is presently the president of board of directors for the American Federation of Pueri Cantores, the official Children’s Choir organization for the Catholic Church. The organization has over 60,000 children members world-wide and hundreds of member-choirs in the United States.


MUSIC: Psalm 122 I Lift My Eyes   Paul French (Paraclete Press) The Choir of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Chicago

MUSIC: A Prayer of St. Patrick Paul French (Morningstar Music) Morningstar Demo Choir

MUSIC: Ave Verum   Paul French (Morningstar Music) William Ferris Chorale, Chicago

MUSIC: Te Deum   Michael Bedford American Federation Pueri Cantores Choir of 1000 Voices, Paul French, Conductor – Spring 2012 Holy Name Cathedral, Chicago


Episode 35 April 21, 2018 Dr. Alison Luedecke, Organist, Harpsichordist, Ensemble Musician and Co-Founder of the Millennia Consort, and the San Diego Baroque Soloists

Enjoy hearing from one of San Diego’s finest musicians. Dr. Alison Luedecke. This busy performer is the organist at St. James-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in La Jolla and co-founder of the Millennia Consort. She hails from Galveston, Texas and is active across the US as a solo concert organist and has played in France, Canada, Mexico and Germany. She has been heard numerous times on the nationally syndicated radio show Pipedreams. As an ensemble musician she has performed with the Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra, Symphony Silicon Valley, and other chamber ensembles and symphonies. She earned the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the Eastman School of Music as a student of David Craighead. Checkout www.sdbaroque.com for the newest ensemble of which Alison is a co-founder, harpsichordist & organist- the San Diego Baroque Soloists.


MUSIC: Prelude in D Major   Johann S. Bach   Dr. Alison Luedecke, organist, recorded at St. Paul’s Cathedral, Pittsburgh

MUSIC: Sonata in A Major Felix Mendelssohn Dr. Alison Luedecke, organist, recorded at St. Paul’s Cathedral, Pittsburgh

MUSIC: Pictures at an Exhibition “The Hut on Fowl’s Legs” Modest Mussorgsky arr. Scott Sutherland   Millennia Consortwith Alison Luedecke, Organist

MUSIC: Hornpipe Humoresque Noel Rawsthorne Dr. Alison Luedecke, organist, recorded at St. Paul’s Cathedral, Pittsburgh

MUSIC: Banish Misfortune John Karl Hirton Millennia Consort with Alison Luedecke, Organist


Episode 34 April 14, 2018   Matthew Gray, Founder and Director of DeAngelis Vocal Ensemble, Director of Music at the Mission Basilica of San Juan Capistrano, Assistant Director of the Diocesan Choir of Orange. He tells us all about the coming deAngelis Vocal Ensemble Program SACRA FRANCE!! Ooh La La!!

Enjoy a visit with Matthew Gray, one of Southern California’s busiest Music Directors. Hear especially about his profession ensemble, DeAngelis Vocal Ensemble, as they conclude their 13th Season of creating beauty through Choral Music! Hear from Matthew all about the program SACRA FRANCE, a wonderful choral concert featuring the sacred music of France. This great choral ensemble will transport you to the glories of France. Matt presents works by Duruflé, Villette, Desenclos, and the music of Francis Poulenc, including the stunningly beautiful Mass in G. Major. Sacré France is part of their annual partnership with Christ Cathedral Concerts.   Complete details and to obtain tickets: www.christcathedralmusic.org   Enjoy their latest CD:


MUSIC: The Scribe Herbert Howells   The DeAngelis Vocal Ensemble   Mathew Grat, Conductor

MUSIC: Salve Regina Francis Poulenc   Harry Christophers 16

MUSIC: Sanctus (Mass in G) Francis Poulenc   Winchester Cathedral and Kings College, London Martin Neary, Conductor

MUSIC: Salve Regina   Alfred Desenclos   Choir of Kings College, London   Martin Neary, Conductor

MUSIC: O Salutaris Hostia Pierre Villette Worchester Cathedral   Donald Hunt, Conductor