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Prep Chamber Orchestra to Perform for the Pope this Sunday

Friday, April 18, 2008  
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The St. Francis Preparatory School Chamber Orchestra will perform for Pope Benedict XVI at the Papal Departure Ceremony at John F. Kennedy International Airport on April 20, 2008. The Prep's Chamber Orchestra will be joined by The United States Army Band (“Pershing's Own”), as well as the Vicariate Choirs of the Diocese of Brooklyn.

Prep's Chamber Orchestra is made up of the school's elite musicians, several of whom have attended the pre-college divisions at the Juilliard School, the Manhattan School of Music and Queens College's Aaron Copland School of Music. Some have also participated in the New York State School Music Association's (NYSSMA) All-State ensembles as well as the Music Educator's National Conference (MENC) All-Eastern Honors Ensembles. The ensemble is a regular participant in annual NYSSMA festivals, earning high praise for their musicianship, maturity and professionalism.

Previous engagements have included the 2003 Queens Borough President's Celebration of African-American Heritage at Queensborough College, the Queens Borough President's 2003 Tribute to the victims of September 11th, the 37th Assembly of National Conference of Vicars for Religious, and the 2007 Brooklyn Diocese Prayer Channel Telethon.

This season alone the orchestra will be presenting its own six concert series on The Prayer Channel, featuring many prominent soloists from New York's professional music community.

The St. Francis Prep Chamber Orchestra is a fixture at numerous school functions, ranging from their own concert performances, to ballet, theatrical and ceremonial engagements.

The Orchestra's Director, Robert L. Johnston, is veteran educator and performer, who is currently in his 12th year at the Prep. Under his guidance, the school's String Program has grown to include three orchestras, beginner classes, and 25 public performances this year. The Orchestra's Associate Director is Mark Krolikowski, a twenty-eight year veteran of the school who also serves as Sound Engineer for the Prep's Art events.