At Bishop Gary Lillibridge's Service of Investiture, several choirs from San Antonio and the surrounding areas sang a service
under the direction of Donald and Karen Sebesta.
Noting that the singers came predominantly from small and mid-size parishes and missions, those of us choir directors present
thought that this same group of musicians could be used in future endeavors where larger choral forces were necessary.
Also, it would give choir members a chance to perform sacred works that were too large and impractical for all but the largest
After one of the many concerts Donald Sebesta directed, Karen Sebesta and Tawni Garcia took inventory of how many singers
were available at St. David's, Holy Spirit and St. Philip's and discussed the possibility of doing a Messiah excerpts
In the course of preparing for this concert, we realized that Donald and I we were working on choral anthems suitable for
the season. (Donald's Day by Day and The Lamb Will Be a Shepherd Now have been published by Augsburg Fortress.)
At last a program that featured a classic masterwork and two new pieces evolved and our natural abilities seemed a natural
fit for the functions required to bring this project together.
Thus was the genesis of the Choral Consortium.
I dubbed that first concert "An Advent Feast," in which the main event (or course) is preceded by a few short pieces (salad
and appetizer, if you will) and followed literally by sweets, coffee, and other refreshments in the parish hall.
And what an event it was!
The orchestra played brilliantly and the chorus, though a little nervous, sang with excited passion. Almost immediately afterwards
at the fine reception, we were flowered with generous compliments and one question from musicians and congregation members
alike: "what are you doing on your next program?" (Like any lover of choral literature, I already had an idea of literature
for a Spring concert.)
Since we enjoyed performing together so much, we'll once again unite to create another program for Eastertide, titled "Sunset
Yields to Sunrise" after one of my favorite hymn texts. On this program we hope to illustrate the passion of our Lord, the
emergence of salvation's light from a dark tomb, and hope for everlasting life.
Our central focus will be the soul's supplication to God for salvation and redemption, via juxtaposed themes of darkness and
We in the Choral Consortium once again hope that you enjoy the fruits of our labors.
To God be the glory,
James Edward Garcia