Biography

Though born in Dover, New Jersey, Chris spent his childhood years in the Dallas suburb of Garland, Texas.  After a full year of begging for piano lessons his parents finally found a teacher that would accept such a young student and at age 6 he began his musical training.  His interest in church music began while attending the large Presbyterian church his family belonged to.  “One of my most cherished childhood memories is from the Sundays that the church brass and percussion ensemble would join the organ, piano, choir, and congregation for the hymns.  The church sanctuary could hold 1000 people to give a sense of the scale of the sound I experienced.  I was so edified and inspired by this sound that I thought surely this must be shared with the world, and I want to have a part in it.”  Chris began diversifying his musical training in middle school when he joined the school orchestra on cello, and further after he moved to Sussex County New Jersey in 2003 when he began playing bassoon and flute.  For this period of a few years cello was his main instrument.  His most notable teachers were Philadelphia’s Gloria dePasquale and Josef Feigelson of Milford, PA.  He rediscovered his love for organ at his first church post in Hamburg, NJ, and after beginning organ lessons he soon realized he could not effectively study so many instruments at once and decided to pursue keyboard studies and church music over strings.  The summer before his junior year he attended the Interlochen Center for the Arts summer program, majoring in organ with Thomas Bara and minoring in composition.  It wasn’t until his senior year of high school that Chris began singing.  He was actually reluctant to join the school choir but knew he really ought to if he was going to go to music school and become a church musician.  Little did he know what joy it would bring him.

Christopher’s years at Marywood University were formative to say the least.  Upon arrival he was recruited into the University Chamber Singers and took on voice as his secondary instrument.  Marywood was close enough to his home in New Jersey that he could keep his private piano students, and because of this his love for teaching would continue to grow.  After completing his music theory and aural skills requirements he joined the Marywood tutoring staff as a music tutor in these subjects.  While serving at Good Shepherd he continued to experiment, make mistakes, and grow.  Through classes in the religious studies department and an independent study he took a deep dive into the theological aspects of music and liturgy.  This, combined with his involvement in the campus bible study and Eucharistic Adoration groups, lead him to realize his calling to convert to Roman Catholicism.  Midway through this time Chris joined Canon Mark Laubach’s ministry at St. Stephen’s as an assistant for a year before going on to put into practice his new knowledge and once again lead his own program.

While studying at Indiana University Christopher further refined his musical skills.  He learned applied figured bass and the art of baroque continuo with Elizabeth Wright, choral conducting, rehearsal technique, and score reading with Dominick DiOrio, and studied organ and sacred music with Bruce Neswick and Janette Fishell.  Additionally, Chris sang with IU’s NOTUS/Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, directed by Dominick DiOrio, where he was constantly challenged with difficult music, world premiere performances, professional recording sessions, travel, and quick performance turnaround times.

Chris’s second love to music is architecture, particularly historic architecture and the later English Gothic styles.  Additionally he enjoys cooking, calligraphy, cycling, meeting new people, and travel.