In 2018 the city of New Orleans celebrated a significant anniversary, and much pomp and circumstance abounded. 2018 marked several other important anniversaries for Trinity Church and the greater New Orleans music scene. The multi-award winning Trinity Artist Series, Bach Around the Clock, and the Organ and Labyrinth music ministries all celebrated historic birthdays in 2018. These always free music events have entertained with a range of musical genre - from jazz, rhythm & blues, classical and more. The longevity of these three programs is remarkable and speaks to the culture and the community that has been created at Trinity under tireless direction of Albinas and Manon.  We asked several artists and musicians to share their thoughts on the impact of these three important ministries and their thoughtful tributes are included below.  Enjoy!
 

Manon and Albinas are shining beacons of grass roots musical efforts in the city of New Orleans. Their passion and outright enthusiasm is undeniable and effects all who come in contact with them. My first performance at Trinity Church was during the early years of Bach Around the Clock. I was inspired to present a jazz version of the famous Minuet in G which fit right into the diverse programming. Manon and Albinas have embraced the varying cultures that make our great city unique and incorporated them in their very popular music programs. I look forward to playing at Trinity Episcopal Church every year, and in fact have stained glass embedded into my trombone as a tribute to the church's majesty!

Delfeayo Marsalis
Internationally-acclaimed trombonist, educator and
Founder of The Uptown Jazz Orchestra

 

In 1995 I moved back to New Orleans to take care of my Mother. I had been in Houston for ten years.  Sadly my Mom died in 1997. When I tried to find my way get back into performing, someone recommended I contact Albinas to see if he might be interested in my one woman show called “WomanSong.” Well, little did I know that would be the beginning of a long and creative friendship...not only did they present my show in the Trinity Artist Series in 1998,  but included me in the first “Bach Around The Clock.”

 

Albinas and Manon have been the pillars of many a creative endeavor of mine, including OperaCréole’s first production in 2012: Scenes from Samuel Coleridge Taylor’s lost opera “Thelma.”  They have supported us since. My love for them is eternal!

 

My daughter Aria Mason, co-founder of OperaCréole, would agree as I dare say there is probably no serious performing artist in New Orleans that Manon and Albinas, has not supported in some way through Trinity. We have all been blessed to have Trinity as a home. Happy Anniversaries!!!!

 

Givonna Joseph,  mezzo-soprano

Founder and Artistic Director, OperaCréole

 

Congratulations and THANK YOU to Albinas and Manon Prizgintas and the Trinity Church Family for 30 precious years of service to the New Orleans community!!! I am so honored and grateful to be a part of this wonderful history.  I can truly say that my relationship with Trinity has been life changing. My first Trinity Artist Series experience was in 1989 in a collaborative recital with my Voice teacher Dr. Rachel Cortina (Voice Professor, UNO) and Ms. Mary Ann Bulla, (former UNO music Department chair/Professor of Music and LPO pianist). I remember being so nervous before the recital and then I met the DYNAMIC DUO, Albinas and Manon, both of whom immediately made me feel welcome and secure. To date, these guardian angels continue to encourage and see the LIGHT and LIMITLESS POSSIBILITIES in each and every artist/human being they touch!  Albinas and a Manon possess the unique ability and are committed to transcending barriers that attempt to darken one’s creativity, sense of being, and expression. I have grown stronger with each life changing performance... and when I say life changing I mean for both the artist and those who witness these “spiritual events” through the Trinity Artist Series, Bach Around the Clock and Tuesday Labyrinth, all of which I have been a part along with my fellow world renowned artists, namely Dr. Wilfred Delphin and Mr. Music Man himself, Albinas Prizgintas, the Patriotic Project Statewide Youth Chorus, my students from Dillard University, Xavier University, the University of New Orleans, Nicholls State University and last but not least my daughter, Imani Sarai Francis. Imani made her first Trinity debut as soloist in Carmina Burana, with the amazing YELLOW DOG choir, directed by MAESTRO Albinas!!!! During rehearsals, when she wasn’t hiding in the pulpit spaces, she was Manon’s “special assistant” to serve sweet refreshments and specialty teas to the members of the choir.  Sweet, sweet memories...Imani continues to be very connected to Uncle Al and Tee-Tee Manon, who encouraged her from a toddler to this very day. My daughter is now 20 years old, and a junior vocal performance major at Boston Conservatory@Berklee.  I am so grateful for the genuine and continuous efforts of this DYNAMIC DUO and for their unselfish dedication to our New Orleans community!!! Words cannot express the incredible magnitude these “Especially for Trinity” programs in the immaculate Trinity Episcopal Church setting have contributed to my life, my family, international, national and local artist community, and friends. Congratulations for the 10th, the 20th and the 30th Anniversaries!!! My prayer is for that LIGHT to NEVER be extinguished!  We need you to survive!!! Thank you for allowing me the freedom to share  and for surrounding all of us with artists from all walks of life and experience levels to share the special gifts that only God can give. THANK YOU for your PEACE, your VISION , and your UNDYING DEDICATION to the ARTS and the ARTIST community! God bless!  

 

Valerie Anne Jones Francis, D.M.A.

Associate Professor of Music

Nicholls State University

 

The Trinity Artist Series, Bach Around the Clock, and the Organ Labyrinth are the  reasons that I have called Trinity Church home for musicians who live and work in New Orleans, as well as many visiting musicians.  I state the obvious when I say the Trinity Artist Series, Bach Around the Clock, and the Organ Labyrinth have been performance venues for hundreds of musicians.  However, I am forever impressed and thankful that the music events at Trinity Church have been more than performances--they have captured the essence of Christian hospitality as well as the spirit of music and the spirit of Christ. This may not be so obvious.

 

I am forever grateful to Albinas, Manon, and the lay and clerical leaders of Trinity for making "Music at Trinity" an integral part of my professional and spiritual growth for the past 30 years.

 

John E. Ware, D.M.A.

Professor of Music Xavier University

Conductor/Music Director of the New Orleans Black Chorale

 

 

Beethoven is said to have called the trombone "The Voice of God,"  and the sound of harmonizing trombones has resonated through Trinity in both Bach Around the Clock and the Trinity Artist Series for nearly 30 years.  The New Orleans Trombone Choir is truly grateful to Manon & Albinas for allowing us to share "The Voice of God" in God's New Orleans House of Music with NOLA music-lovers.

 

John Risey, Director   

New Orleans Trombone Choir

 

 

 

The artist series and offerings such as Organ and Labyrinth and Bach Around the Clock at Trinity Episcopal Church under the caring and nurturing hands of Maestro Albinas and Manon are unique and have had a profound impact on me and on my students for many years...  Trinity provides a spiritual oasis for beautiful and meaningful music to foster and prosper...  One feel embraced, welcome and propelled to reach for the stars at Bach Around the Clock... We are truly blessed to be surrounded and guided by such angels, Albinas and Manon are precious and simply a gift to our community may God bless and preserve them.

 

Dr. Jean Montès, DMA
Director of Orchestral Studies at Loyola 
and Conductor of The Greater New Orleans 
Youth Orchestra

 

 

 

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