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Music Program at St. John Cantius

Many people have enjoyed choral Masses and other great works of music in concert halls. St. John Cantius Church offers a different experience—classic choral Masses sung as the composers intended, as an integral part of the liturgy. Their sacred music is offered within its sacred context—the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

At St. John Cantius you can experience choral masterworks from the Church’s treasury of sacred music, including Beethoven, Mozart, Schubert, Palestrina, and other outstanding composers. You will hear the Mass sung in Latin, the Church’s official language, as well as Gregorian Chant sung by our Schola Cantorum, all within the glorious Baroque splendor of St. John Cantius Church. Our several choirs enhance our offering of Divine Worship with sacred music from the Renaissance era, the Viennese choral tradition, and modern choral works that are consistent with Roman Catholic tradition.

We are happy to welcome Massimo Scapin as our new Director of Liturgical Music this fall. Massimo Scapin (born on November 18, 1968 in Foggia, Italy) is an Italian conductor of both opera and the symphonic repertoire, composer and pianist.

He holds diplomas in piano and in choral conducting from the State Conservatory of Music in Perugia, Fellowship diplomas in orchestral conducting and in composition from the National College of Music in London, and the baccalaureate in religious sciences magna cum laude from the Pontifical Lateran University. Scapin played piano from age 8. He attended the Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music, where he took courses, among others, in gregorian chant with Giacomo Baroffio and composition with Domenico Bartolucci; the International Academy Mozarteum in Salzburg, where he studied piano with Sergio Perticaroli; and the Accademia Musicale Pescarese, where he studied conducting with Donato Renzetti.

Massimo appeared as guest conductor and pianist in Europe, Japan, Kazakhstan, Korea, and the United States. He was conductor at the Musical Theatre of Galaţi in southeastern Romania (2001-03) and at the Musical Theater of Karaganda in central Kazakhstan (2008). From 1996 to 2008, Scapin conducted the symphonic concerts of the Portuguese Cultural Institute in Rome, some of them recorded on 14 CDs, including his Te Deum for tenor, baritone, chorus and orchestra, on commission for the aforementioned Institute. From Christmas 1999 - 2010, Scapin worked as the Assistant Music Director of the Sistine Chapel Choir. On the occasion of the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000, the Office of Papal Liturgical Celebrations commissioned him to compose and conduct music for the Mass celebrated by Pope St. John Paul II at Rome’s Olympic Stadium for the Jubilee of Sports People. He was also a Vatican Radio commentator and entertainer. He became assistant professor in vocal literature and piano accompanying at the Catholic University of Daegu, in southeastern South Korea, in 2011 and director of music at the Archdiocese of Chicago in 2013. In October 2013 Massimo took the podium as associate conductor of the Karaganda Symphony Orchestra. Since July 2019, he has become the Resident Composer for the Sistine Chapel Choir.

The new collaboration of our music program will be under the guidance of our Prefect of Music. Since the music for the Divine Liturgy is so closely aligned with the mission of the Canons Regular of St John Cantius, Rev. Matthew Schuster, SJC will continue in his current role.

Corrado C. Cavalli has celebrated his 5th anniversary as the Principal Organist at St. John Cantius. From his native Turin, Italy Mr. Cavalli continues to tour globally sharing his world class musical talent with the world and at home in our parish.


Attending Mass at SJC
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