The Curé of Ars
Dr. John W. Vitz has written an exciting, and inspired musical based on the extraordinary life of Saint John Vianney. Angelus Music has a beautifully recorded score, performed by a great cast, available in CD and mp3 formats! The CD comes with a BOOKLET that contains a synopsis of the play, lyrics for each song, and much more.
Saint John Vianney
In the aftermath of the French Revolution, a young man rose from obscurity to restore the Catholic Church in France! His name was Jean-Marie Vianney. Once again, we live in a secular, “post-Christian” era. Faithful Christians, with the help of the Holy Spirit and the Hand of God, are called to action to evangelize, defend and present the Truth that is Jesus Christ and His holy Church! One way to respond to that call is through the arts.
For this reason, Angelus Music has produced this musical, “The Curé of Ars”. The word curé means parish priest. Ars is the small French hamlet where St. John Vianney served as curé for 41 years, and rebuilt the Catholic Church, in France!
Inside The Recording Studio
Here are a few photos and comments of “The Curé of Ars” recording session.
Credit where credit is due
Elizabeth Hunter Ashley
To this day, I am in awe of what Elizabeth contributed to “The Curé of Ars” recording at Studio 880. Her energy was contagious, and she is enthusiastic, reliable, and fun to work with, but most of all – she is a professional and a perfectionist. Elizabeth has a beautiful family, and she is one of those blessed people who is an example of what it means to be a Child of God.
James was the perfect person to record the role of St. John Vianney. He is a huge talent! His performance comes from his heart, and his voice is amazing. He even knows Latin – which is more than we can say for St. John Vianney!
Eoin (pronounced “Owen”) was in high gear pursuing his career as a performer/singer/songwriter. Even though his own CD, “Confess”, was about to be released, Eoin went out of his way to get to the studio at night to sing the role of Cadet Vianney. When he showed up, he was gold!
The owner and chief engineer at Studio 880. John has always believed in my work. His performance on the CD as “The Grappin” (the devil) will scare the hell out of you!
John Kendall Bailey
JKB has been my right arm whenever I need a superhero. He was the conductor of the orchestra and chorus on the “Mass for Peace in the Third Millennium” CD. After the soloists had recorded their tracks, John gathered his singers from Voices of Musica Sacra, and they sang their hearts out as The Angel Chorus. In the studio, John Lucasey blended the Angel Chorus tracks with those recorded by the soloists, and “The Curé of Ars” CD had blossomed.
I met Andrew (age 12 at the time) during a voice lesson at the courtesy of Chad Runyon, his vocal coach. His voice was so pure and impeccable, that I offered him the chance to sing on our CD. A few weeks later, Andrew’s father was kind enough to bring him into the studio after work, and Andrew stepped up like a pro and sang HOW CAN I KNOW? You have to hear this young man sing! He has the voice of a saint, for sure!
The first time I saw Joe rehearse his choir at St. Augustine’s Church, in Pleasanton, I knew that he was the one who could get the effect I needed for one of the large ensemble pieces in the play, THE JOURNEY OF A SOUL. This song requires more than just good voices, it is a major scene in the play! Joe worked his magic and the singers delivered a great performance.
Carolyn directed the St. Joan of Arc choir who did an outstanding job with ANIMA CHRISTI (Soul of Christ). I owe a special thank you to the brilliant Evan O’Dorney for his help with the choral arrangement of Anima Christi, and to Judy Linares for her piano accompaniment!
Music Track Samples
The script and the score are written!
A beautiful studio recording of the highlights of the musical is “in the can”!
The score is inspirational in itself, but the story and the production will astound!
- Overture - (Orchestra)
- The Story Begins - The Angel Choir (John Kendall Bailey, Director)
- Mary's Lullaby - Marie Vianney, the mother of the infant John Vianney (Melissa Reese)
- How Can I Know - John Vianney at age 8 - how he found God. (Andrew Alcaraz)
- Hangin' In - John Vianney struggling in pre-seminary (James Locke)
- Anima Christi - St Joan of Arc Choir (Carolyn Williams, Director)
- The Hand of God - Vianney ministers to a foresaken, dying man (James Locke)
- Destiny - Elise laments her beloved Cadet leaving for war (Elizabeth Hunter Ashley)
- Destiny Reprise - Vianney and Elise pray together (James Locke, Elizabeth Hunter Ashley)
- Pater Noster - Vianney praying in Latin to salvage his vocation (James Locke)
- Ordination - The Angel Choir (John Kendall Bailey, Director)
- Truth - Father John Vianney preaches to the sinners of Ars (James Locke)
- La Providence - Theme for the opening of La Providence orphanage (Orchestra)
- Philomena - Vianney and Elise tell the orphans this story of a Saint (James, Elizabeth, Allie Cable)
- Passing Through Time - Cadet decries his life as a long term prisoner of war (Eoin Harrington)
- The Journey of a Soul - Pilgrims contemplate the afterlife while waiting in the confession line (Ensemble and James Locke)
- Enter, the Grappin! - Using the persona of Cadet, the devil attacks The Curé! (John Lucasey)
- The Angelus - Elise prays for the return of long lost love, Cadet (Elizabeth Hunter Ashley)
- The Curé Returns - Father Vianney returns to Ars after he left to go to a monastery (Orchestra)
- Yesteryear - Reunited, Cadet tells Elise how he loves her now, more than ever (Eoin Harrington)
- Made In Heaven - The Wedding March and marriage vows (Elizabeth and Angel Choir)
- The Final Procession - Saying “Goodbye” to The Curé of Ars (Orchestra)