Episode 23   December 9, 2017     Canon James Buonemani, Organist-Choirmaster, and Dr. Tom Mueller, Associate Organist, are the musicians at St. James Episcopal Church, Los Angeles. Both are brilliant organists, composers and arrangers. Dr. Mueller is also the Assistant Professor of Church Music and the University Organist at Concordia University, Irvine.

Meet two of the finest musicians in Southern California. Hear how music came into their lives and how music has led them to two of the most prominent positions in Church Music anywhere in the country. We will explore the rich musical program at St. James and how it has developed over the last 20 years under the director of Canon Buonemani. You will hear a wide variety of music recorded live by the St James Choir and special organ arrangements written by both Canon Bounemani and Dr. Mueller, performed on the historic organ at St. James. It is certainly the continuation of the rebirth of the great English choral tradition and proof that tradition is alive and well in Southern California at the hands of this spectacular musicians. St. James in the City website: http://stjla.org/

Seg 1

MUSIC: Bransle de Bourgogne from Suite francaise   Francis Poulenc arranged and performed by Dr. Tom Mueller at St. James Episcopal

Seg 2

MUSIC: Fanfare for the Common Man Aaron Copland arranged and performed by James Buonemani at St. James Episcopal

MUSIC: Bransle de Champagne from Suite francaise Francis Poulenc arranged and performed by Dr. Tom Mueller at St. James Episcopal

Seg 3

MUSIC: Trois danses pour orgue- No. 1   Jean Alain performed by Dr. Tom Mueller at St. James Episcopal

MUSIC: Magnificat – -Collegium Regale- – Herbert Howells performed by St. James Choir, James Buonemani, Conductor, Dr. Tom Mueller, organist

Seg 4

MUSIC: I wonder as I wander- – trad. arr. J. Aaron McDermid (b. 1974) performed by St. James Choir, James Buonemani, Conductor

MUSIC: Motet- Sancta Maria, Regina caeli – -Second Eve- Ola Gjeilo performed by St. James Choir, James Buonemani, Conductor


Episode 22   December 2, 2017     Patrick Flahive, noted Children’s Choir Director, Director of Music, Sacred Heart Church, Covina, Past President of The American Federaltion of Pueri Cantores, and the Conductor and Founder of Pueri Cantores San Gabriel Valley.


Hear from one of the country’s finest Children’s Choir Directors and Music Educators about the importance of children singing and learning music. Patrick Flahive is one of the most experienced musicians teaching children in the United States. As an educator and church musician, he knows first-hand that great adult choirs and singing congregations of adults flourish in parishes where there are children’s choirs. Enjoy exploring Patrick’s own musical story which led him to be the National President of the American Federation of Pueri Cantores, the official Roman Catholic international organization for Children’s Choirs. Hear about his 19 years as president and the many festivals and tours which he took with his own choir, Pueri Cantores of San Gabriel Valley. Patrick works with us here at Christ Cathedral and will be directing our Preparatory Choir for the Diocesan Children’s Choir of Orange, he’s the Children’s Chorus Master for the annual Cathedral Opera Production mounted by LA Opera at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, and works with numerous choirs in his parish in Covina.


Pueri Cantores San Gabriel Valley: http://puericantoressgv.org

Their Christmas Concert is Sunday, December 17 at Sacred Heart Church in Covina. 7:30 PM

The next One Act Opera at the LA Cathedral, “Jonah and the Whale” will be March 16-17, 2018


MUSIC: Welcome Yole (Ceremony of Carols) Benjamin Britten   PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor

MUSIS: Deo Gracias (Ceremony of Carols) Benjamin Britten   PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor

MUSIC: Deck The Halls English Carol PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor

MUSIC: This Little Babe (Ceremony of Carols) Benjamin Britten   PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor

MUSIC: Jesus Christ, the Apple Tree Elizabeth Poston PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor

MUSIC: Jingles Bells   James Lord Pierpont PCSGV Choir, Patrick Flahive, Conductor


Episode 21   November 18, 2017     Mark Thallander, Concert Organist, long-time Organist at Crystal Cathedral (1976-1993), President of the Mark Thallander Foundation.

This is an amazing story of a wonderful musician, who served the Crystal Cathedral for 18 years, 1976 – 1993, as Assistant Organist and assisting for the Hour of Power with scripting, service programming, and even arranging for the musical guests! As author, composer, and performer, his life drastically changed after a horrific car accident in 2003. As a man of great faith, he went on to create the Mark Thallander Foundation, which he serves as president, and even continues to perform organ concerts around the country. The Mark Thallander Foundation presents choral festivals inspiring thousands of church musicians, singers, clergy, and congregations, presenting great music of faith. The foundation connects children and youth to sacred and classical music. In addition, it fosters the education of organists through music scholarships. You can find out more at markthallanderfoundation.org

MUSIC: Improvisation On “O Store Gud”   Recorded “live” at The Crystal Cathedral for the Hour of Power   Mark Thallander, Organist   Peggy Lee Whiteaker and Jeremy Reinbolt, Percussionists

MUSIC: Postlude On “Old Hundredth”   Recorded “live” at The Crystal Cathedral for the Hour of Powerc   Mark Thallander, Organist   Peggy Lee Whiteaker and Jeremy Reinbolt, Percussionists

MUSIC: Toccata on “Hymn to Joy”   Recorded “live” at The Crystal Cathedral  The Hazel Wright Organ 20th Anniversary   Mark Thallander, Organist

MUSIC: Festival Fideles

MUSIC: Organ Fantasy On “O For A Thousand Tongues To Sing”   Recorded “live” at The Crystal Cathedral for the Hour of Power   Mark Thallander, Organist   Peggy Lee Whiteaker and Jeremy Reinbolt, Percussionists

MUSIC: Praise to the Lord, the Almighty Michael Burkhardt



Episode 20   November 11, 2017     Dr. Jung-A Lee, Concert Organist, Organist at St. Andrew Presbyterian, Organist for the Pacific Symphony, Artist-in-Residence for Pacific Chorale.

Find out about Southern California’s busiest organist, Dr. Jung-A Lee. She is a church organist, concert organist, symphony organist, accompanist/artist-in-residence for the Pacific Chorale, and college teacher. Hear her fascinating journey from South Korea to Canada to the US as she studied organ at some of the finest and most prestigious universities. Enjoy music from Harvard University Chapel to Disney Hall as Dr. Lee tells of her performances on organs literally all over the world. In 2009 she founded Music Mission International to promote the organ. She is a brilliant young artist with a fascinating story. Tune in!


MUSIC: “Thee, God” Ned Rorem   Memorial Church, Harvard University. Jung-A Lee, organist

MUSIC: “For Mortal Flesh is as the Grass” (Requiem) Johannes Brahms Pacific Choral Festival Chorus, Jung-A Lee, organist

MUSIC: Sinfonia from Cantata No. 29 Johann Sebastian Bach, Jung-A Lee, organist   from her DVD “Beauty in the Wind”

MUSIC: “Amazing Grace/How Great Thou Art” Jung-A Lee with David Washburn trumpet, recorded at St. Andrew Presbyterian Church in Newport Beach on the CD Precious Lord.

MUSIC: Final (Symphonie No. 1) Louis Vierne   Jung-A Lee, organist on the Rosales/Glatter-Goetz Organ in Disney Hall, Los Angeles, from her CD Amazing Grace.


Episode 19   November 4, 2017     Carl St. Clair, Conductor of the Pacific Symphony

Hear from one of America’s longest tenured Symphony Conductors, Carl St. Clair. He is a musical treasure of the entire Orange County arts community and far, far beyond that as a beloved guest conductor of almost every major symphony in the US and Europe. Not only do we hear of his very earliest beginnings in music, but his working with the great Leonard Bernstein. Enjoy great memories with the early days of the Pacific Symphony and how it has become one of the prominent symphony orchestras of our time under St. Clair during his 28 years as Conductor and Artistic Director. He highlights two of this season’s coming concerts, “Cathedrals of Sound” built around the deeply religious composer, Anton Bruckner, and his Symphony No 8 and then he speaks a bit about the symphony’s historic trip to Carnegie Hall this year to celebrate the 80th birthday of Philip Glass with the piece commissioned for the opening of our own Segerstrom Concert Hall, The Passion of Ramakrishna.         https://www.pacificsymphony.org


MUSIC:   Greeting   Leonard Bernstein

MUSIC: There Will Be Rest   Frank Ticheli   Pacific Chorale, John Alexander, director

MUSIC: The Passion of Ramakrishna PROLOGUE   Philip Glass     Pacific Symphony and Pacific Chorale Carl St. Clair, Conductor

MUSIC: Symphony No. 8 II. Scherzo   Anton Bruckner Vienna Philharmonic, Herbert von Karajan


Episode 18   October 21, 2017     Johann Vexo, Concert Organist, Choir Organist, Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, Organist, Nancy Cathedral.

Enjoy hearing from this French concert artist, Johann Vexo, as he describes Sacred Music in France as well as the French system of Titular Organists and Choir Organists. Johann will compare the church in France with the church in America, and even who owns the churches and organs in France! Hear him speak about his musical training, his church and university positions, and the many places around the world he has performed as a concert organist. It is a fascinating look into the life of this amazing young artist and a captivating glimpse into the musical scene of another country.

MUSIC: Symphony No. 5 TOCCATA   Charles Marie Widor     Johann Vexo on the Grand Organ of the Cathedral of Nancy, France

MUSIC: Trio Sonata No. 4   Johann Sebastian Bach    Johann Vexo on the Choir Organ of Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris, France

MUSIC: Prelude and Fugue on the Name of ALAIN Maurice Duruflé   Johann Vexo on the Organ of Our Lady of Refuge, Brooklyn NY

MUSIC: 24 Pieces de Fantasie: FEUX FOLLETS   Louis Vierne   Johann Vexo on the Grand Organ of Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris

MUSIC: Poémes pour Orgue: Vers L’espérance Thierry Escaich   Johann Vexo on the Grand Organ of Notre Dame Cathedral, Paris


Episode 17 October 7, 2017   Stephen Salts, Singer, Conductor, and the Creator of “HOWELLS 125”

Stephen Salts is one of the busiest musicians in Southern California, singing in many choirs and ensembles, conducting choirs, and even running the Children’s Choir program at St. Wilfrid Episcopal Church. Yet this Fulbright Scholar in the Anglican Choral Tradition had time and the vision to create a year-long festival celebrating the English Composer, Herbert Howells’ 125th birthday!! Listen as Stephen talks about his background and education, his study in London, hear him sing on several recordings, learn about his involvement in “Golden Bridge” project, and especially find out all about the many performances of the great music of Herbert Howells which took place, all because of his foresight and drive to create this spectacular festival. Enjoy this exciting episode of MUSIC FROM THE TOWER showcasing this superb musician, innovator, and scholar.

MUSIC:   “My love is fair” Henry Leslie Choir of Royal Holloway. (Stephen is singing the bass solo on this recording) (Hyperion Records: 2016 English Romantic Madrigals)

MUSIC:   “Spiritus Mundi” Dale Trumbore recorded live at the 2016 Golden Bridge Concert

MUSIC:   “Coelos ascendit hodie” Charles V. Stanford   Trinity College Choir recording of this piece by a teacher of Herbert Howells (Hyperion Records: 2017 Stanford Choral Works)

MUSIC: “Behold, O God, our defender” Herbert Howells Trinity College Choir (Hyperion Records: Howells: Collegium Regale and other choral works)


Episode 16 September 30, 2017   Richard Unfried, First official Organist of the Garden Grove Community Church, the Hour of Power and later the Crystal Cathedral.

Hear from the very first organist, following Arvella Schuller, at what was to become the Crystal Cathedral. Mr. Unfried recounts his early years, his training, seeing an ad in the Diapason Magazine, meeting the Schullers, and his audition for the Garden Grove Community Church and its 23-rank Wicks Organ. He then moves on to the beginning of the Hour of Power, the 1969 crusade with Dr. Billy Graham with Dr. Schuller, which may have actually named the “Hour of Power”. In these Pre-Ruffatti Organ years of the Hour of Power, he remembers what those early TV years were like, and even a bomb scare at the Offertory! Next hear about choosing the Ruffatti organ for the Arboretum, the three years waiting for its installation, and the dedication by famed organist Virgil Fox. Finally find out who named this organ “Big Buddha” and why. It is an hour filled with memories of the early years of the Crystal Cathedral that you won’t want to miss.

MUSIC: Fugue and Prelude (1965) Rayner Brown (1912 – 1999) Dedicated to Richard Unfried Recorded on the 5 Manual 116-rank Ruffatti Organ on the album, Thou Art A Rock, recorded by Richard Unfried.

MUSIC: The Church’s One Foundation (Aurelia) Recorded on the 5 Manual 116-rank Ruffatti Organ on the album, Hymns of Hope and Power, recorded by Richard Unfried.

MUSIC: Toccata (Fifth Symphony) Charles Marie Widor Recorded on the 5 Manual 116-rank Ruffatti Organ on the album, Thou Art A Rock, recorded by Richard Unfried.

MUSIC: God of Our Fathers (National Hymn) Recorded on the 5 Manual 116-rank Ruffatti Organ on the album, Hymns of Hope and Power, recorded by Richard Unfried.


Episode 15 September 23, 2017   Dr. Robert Istad, NEW Artistic Director and Conductor for Pacific Chorale, Professor of Music and Director of Choral Studies, California State University, Fullerton.

Hear all about Pacific Chorale from its new conductor, Dr. Robert Istad, as he takes over the Chorale just in time to celebrate their 50th Anniversary Season. Dr. Istad talks about the group, its singers, and some of the highlights of the past seasons. He also spends a bit of time on his own musical journey and what lead him to Southern California to continue his musical education. As a busy college professor, Dr. Tstad talks about his Cal State Fullerton choirs as well. He is currently the president of the California Choral Directors Association. Finally, Rob explains in detail about the great concerts in the Chorale’s 50th Anniversary season and other concerts they will be singing with the Pacific Symphony, including one in Carnegie Hall! For information on the Pacific Chorale, visit www.pacificchorale.org.


MUSIC: A Celestial Map of the Sky Tarik O’Regan (Pacific Chorale’s Composer in Residence)

MUSIC: Herr, unser Herrscher (St. John Passion) Johann Sebastian Bach

MUSIC: Sanctus (Mass) Leonard Bernstein

MUSIC: III. Peace My Heart (Songs of Eternity for Chorus and Orchestra) James Hopkins


Episode 14 September 16, 2017   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.

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 begin their 13th Season of creating beauty through Choral Music! Hear from Matthew about the founded the organization, his own interesting musical history, and what lead him to create one of the finest musical groups in Southern California. Learn about the amazing concerts coming this season, from a birthday celebration for composer Herbert Howells, their annual Christmas Concert, a festive concert celebrating St. Cecilia with the music of Handel and a partnership with the instrumental group Kontrapunktus, and finally Sacré France featuring the spectacular choral music of French composers. All concerts, except for Sacré France are held in the historic Mission Basilica in San Juan. Sacré France is part of their annual partnership with Christ Cathedral Concerts.   Complete details and to obtain tickets: http://deangelisensemble.org     Enjoy their latest CD: http://deangelisensemble.org/music/


MUSIC: Ave Maris Stella Fredrik Sixten (De Angelis Vocal Ensemble)

MUSIC: Ave Maria Robert Parsons   (De Angelis Vocal Ensemble)

MUSIC: In Youth is Pleasure   Herbert Howells

MUSIC: Salve Regina   Alfred Desenclos

MUSIC: O Salutais Hostia   Pierre Villette