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The KPAC Blog features classical music news, reviews, and analysis from South Texas and around the world.

Mastersingers Get Sendoff For Italy At Little Flower Basilica

John Clare / Texas Public Radio

“Bella Italia” will feature music to be performed by the San AntonioMastersingers and the University of Texas at San Antonio Concert Choir in Italy, May 12–21. The program begins with Giovanni Palestrina’s "Ave Maria", "composed for St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican in Rome, where we've been invited to sing a Mass during this tour," says John Silantien, conductor of the groups.

They have also been invited to sing Mass at the Santa Croce Church in Florence and the Basilica of San Marco in Venice. Also on the tour program are motets by American composers Randall Thompson and others, including "Amazing Grace." "European audiences love to hear African-American spirituals, so I included 'Great Day', 'My Lord What a Mornin’', and 'Sinner Man'," Silantien adds.

Their program concludes with a new arrangement of "Deep in the Heart of Texas" commissioned for the trip and "Va, pensiero" by Italian opera composer Giuseppi Verdi. Hear all these and more this Sunday as part of a "bon voyage" concert!

  • Date: Sunday, May 5, 2013
  • Time: 7 p.m.
  • Location: The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Little Flower, 1715 N. Zarzamora, San Antonio
  • Tickets: (210) 244-1790
John Clare is comfortable behind a microphone, streaming video or playing violin. A former broadcaster for NPR, John has previously worked with Voice of America, the Canadian Broadcast Corporation and stations in Kansas, Nevada, California, and Pennsylvania.