Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to perform Faure’s Requiem on numerous occasions. While flipping through my photo album this afternoon, I came across the poster from the performance that we did in Albany six months after 9/11. It’s hard to believe that the concert was ten years ago this month.
One of my many pleasures during my tenure in Albany was working with the Festival Celebration Choir. Founded by my predecessor at the Cathedral, J. Robert Sheehan, the group was initially quite large. By the time I encountered the group, it had become a more moderate 60-80 voices. While under its second director, Deacon Neil Hook, I was offered several opportunities to accompany the choir for different concerts, including a presentation of the Mozart Requiem on June 6, 2004. The group even commissioned me to write a Te Deum for them. Eventually, Neil decided it was time for him to retire as the group’s conductor and passed the baton to me. Regrettably, only a year later, I had to pass the baton along again as my tenure in Albany came to a close and new opportunities awaited for me in Orlando.