Fall 2010 Issue


When in Rome

Dr. Alan Mason addresses students in his ‘Listening to Music’ class.

Dr. Alan Mason, associate professor of music, has the extraordinary honor of being invited to perform at the Vatican for a special concert on November 16. Mason is one of only two accompanists who will play at the concert of Jewish music, which also features 20 cantors from North America. Mason and the cantors will perform before Pope Benedict XVI and other Vatican leaders.

“This is a rare opportunity for the finest of sacred Jewish music to be heard by an audience who might never have this chance in their lifetimes. Jewish prayer is sung, shared through melody, and there is no better vehicle than music to bring people of diverse cultures together.”

The concert, which is part of the American Conference of Cantors, will be filmed and included as part of a documentary titled “Across the Holy Lands.” It is being held at the Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli e dei Martiri. The conference itself focuses on Catholic-Jewish relations.

A gifted musician, Mason has been teaching piano, music history and accompanying the choir at Barry since 1996. His performance at the Vatican is only the latest invitation he has received to perform before a world leader. In 2007, Mason was invited to perform at the White House for President George W. Bush.