Jen Arvay Kefalas

With 14+ years of arts administration and hospitality leadership experience, Jen Arvay Kefalas is an expert in planning, curating, and executing complex arts activities that create great experiences for all involved. Jen is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the New York Holiday Singers, a seasonal group that performs fun & original versions of holiday favorites.

She holds a BFA in Dance Musical Theater from the University of Akron in Akron, Ohio. When Jen is not producing the next great event, running financials, or managing calendars, you’ll find her doing professional voiceovers and baking the best brownies in the world. Her chocolate chip cookies are pretty amazing too!

Douglas Purcell

Douglas Purcell has been critically acclaimed for the “strength, beauty and effortless top” of his lyric tenor. In recent seasons of Sacred Music in a Sacred Space, he has been soloist in Haydn Dixit Dominus, Handel Harmoniemesse, Rachmaninoff’s All-Night Vigil, and the special St. Ignatius Jesuits in America: Zipoli and his World concert. Mr. Purcell has performed with The Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, and New York City Ballet. In frequent appearances with MasterVoices (née Collegiate Chorale), he has been a soloist in Purcell’s Dido and Æneas, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Beethoven’s Fidelio and Choral Fantasy at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, as well as Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms in New York. Other solo appearances include American Symphony Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, Mark Morris Dance Group, and Westchester Symphony. He is featured on the Helicon Classics recording with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and Zubin Mehta of Bach’s Cantata 140

Wendy Baker

Wendy Baker, soprano, has a Masters in Music Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music and she obtained a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Clayton State College. She has been heard as a soloist in works including Handel Messiah and Dixit Dominus, Saint-Saëns Oratorio de Noël, Poulenc Gloria, Vivaldi Gloria, Faure Requiem, Brahms Requiem, Haydn Stabat Mater, Theresienmesse and Harmoniemesse, Mozart Requiem, Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music and Dona Nobis Pacem and Rossini Petite Messe Solennelle. She has sung the roles of Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Mother (Amahl and the Night Visitors), Lauretta (Gianni Schicchi), Giuletta (I Capuleti e i Montecchi), Gilda (Rigoletto), Madame Heartthrob (The Impresario), Countess (Le Nozze di Figaro), and the title roles in Suor Angelica and Lucia di Lammermoor.

The recipient of numerous awards, Wendy was a Jensen Foundation National Finalist, Oratorio Society of New York Semi-Finalist, Gerda Lissner National Finalist and Grant Winner, and a Prize Winner in the Met District and Regional competitions.

She has had the privilege of traveling to Israel and the Salzburg Music Festival where she sang as the soprano soloist in the Bloch Sacred Service under the baton of Zubin Mehta. She is honored to be a member of the Saint Ignatius Loyola Choir.

Danya Katok

Danya Katok, soprano, originally from State College, PA, is an exceptionally versatile vocalist whose repertoire ranges from the pure straight tone of plainchant to the exciting belt of musical theater. Performances of note include Max in Where the Wild Things Are with New York City Opera (for which she was praised by The New York Times as being “superb”), featured vocalist in “An Evening of Cole Porter” with The Boston Pops, soprano soloist in Haydn’s The Creation with Sacred Music in a Sacred Space, vocal soloist with Mark Morris Dance Group at Jacob’s Pillow, and soprano soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 4 with Pennsylvania Chamber Orchestra and New York Symphonic Arts Ensemble. Danya received her DMA in Voice Performance from CUNY Graduate Center in 2016 and is currently on the music faculty at Hunter College.

Sarah Griffiths

Soprano Sarah Abigail Griffiths has been hailed for her “glowing tone, effortless facility and vivid expressivity” (Dallas Morning News), and has appeared as soloist and chorister with professional ensembles throughout the United States. She can be heard on recordings with Armonia Celeste (Centaur) and New York Virtuoso Singers (Naxos), and she is featured singing Alice Parker’s song cycle Dickinson: On Recollecting in a 2017 recording for Gothic. She has performed U.S. premieres by Bob Chilcott and Thea Musgrave and world premieres by Katherine Hoover, Edward Smaldone, and Martha Sullivan. She holds degrees from the University of North Texas, Westminster Choir College, and Earlham College, and is an adjunct professor at Ramapo College and William Paterson University.

Rev. Dennis J. Yesalonia, S.J.

Father Dennis Yesalonia is a native of Jersey City, New Jersey. He entered the Society of Jesus in Boston, Massachusetts in 1976 and was ordained a priest at St. Joseph Chapel at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts in 1985.

No stranger to New York City, Father Yesalonia is a 1967 graduate of Xavier High School. He journeyed to New England to attend the College of the Holy Cross and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1971. He holds a Juris Doctor degree from Notre Dame Law School where he distinguished himself as a Concannon Scholar. Father Yesalonia has been a member of the bar of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts since 1975 and of the U.S. Supreme Court since 1988. After entering the Society of Jesus, Father Yesalonia earned a master’s degree in philosophy from Fordham University, a bachelor of sacred theology degree from Regis College in Toronto, and a master of divinity degree from the University of Toronto.

Following his ordination to the priesthood, Father Yesalonia served as legal counsel to Boston College for thirteen years and taught a seminar on estate planning at its law school. After an interim period in private practice, he returned to academia as legal counsel to the College of the Holy Cross until 2003. In 2002, Father Yesalonia was named treasurer of the New England Province of the Society of Jesus. After a term of eleven years as treasurer, he served as chief operating officer of the Health Sciences Division of Loyola University Chicago before briefly returning to the provincial staff of the New England Province until the summer of 2015. Throughout his many years in legal and financial administration at Jesuit institutions, Father Yesalonia regularly served on weekends as an Assisting Priest at parishes in the archdioceses of Boston and Chicago and the diocese of Worcester.

Father Yesalonia joined the parish staff in September 2015. He became Pastor in June 2016.

Steven Morris

Steven Morris is a graduate of Fordham University and a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Berklee College of Music with a major in songwriting. Current projects include music supervising, arranging and orchestrating Nikki Sixx’s Heroin Diaries (upcoming North American tour), composing and producing the theme music for Let’s Get After It with Chris Cuomo (SiriusXM Satellite Radio), writing music, lyrics, arrangements and orchestrations for the new musical Everyone Comes To Elaine’s (based on the book Everyone Comes To Elaine’s by A. E. Hotchner about the world renowned Upper East Side restaurant Elaine’s). Recording bass tracks for legendary guitarist, arranger and producer, David Spinozza’s Beatles Big Band project. Ongoing collaboration as a recording artist and songwriter with Grammy Award winning producer and engineer Paul Boutin (Morris Brothers). Composing and producing the theme song for The Richie Byrne Comedy Special (Network Pending). Steven has also contributed music, lyrics and orchestrations for the musicals Duck Commander Musical (Las Vegas), White Noise (Chicago, New Orleans), Once Around The Sun (Off Broadway), Rock Star (Off Off Broadway), and What You Will (Philadelphia). His recording artist releases, as one half of the Morris Brothers, include Stand Out, Pop The Trunk and One Less Dream.

He has written for, and with, major label and independent artists, and his songs have been featured on network and cable television. As a bass player he has recorded and performed everywhere and beyond, with numerous artists some of whom are; Stevie Wonder, Sting, Darius Rucker, Natalie Cole, Robin Thicke, Kristen Chenoweth, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Allan Toussaint, Arturo Sandovar, and in the orchestras of numerous Broadway shows (Hairspray, Hot Feet, Baby It’s You, Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar, It Should Have Been You, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Bronx Tale, School Of Rock, Waitress, Summer, Bat Out Of Hell). He was nominated for Chicago’s prestigious Jeff Award in the category of Outstanding New Work-Musical or Revue for the Royal George Theater production of White Noise (Whoopi Goldberg Executive Producer), and has also composed sacred music for, and performs with, the Church of St. Ignatius Loyola’s Wallace Hall Choir. For a time, he and his twin brother could be seen as the Mad Cloning Scientists on The Late Show With David Letterman. He is a client of the WME agency, a writer/publisher affiliate at SESAC and a member of Local 802 American Federation of Musicians. He lives in New York City with his wife and their three children.

Elisa Singer Strom

Soprano Elisa Singer Strom enjoys a versatile career, ranging from opera to contemporary, early, and sacred music. Recent solo performances include Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Fairfield County Chorale, and Rossini’s Petite Messe Solennelle as well as Brahms Requiem with the choir of St. Ignatius Loyola. An active collaborative artist, Ms. Singer Strom regularly performs choral music throughout the New York area with groups such as Musica Sacra, New York Choral Artists, Voices of Ascension, choir of St. John the Divine, Park Avenue Synagogue, and more. Elisa earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, and her master’s from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

Kate Maroney

Kate Maroney is a passionate believer in the deeply transformative, fully humanizing power of music and in its ability to foster empathy in the community of performers and listeners alike. She particularly values collaborations with kind and generous colleagues who share this conviction. Recognized for “vibrant and colorful” singing (The New York Times) Kate’s recent soloist appearances include with the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra, Gare St. Lazare Ireland, Indianapolis Symphonic Choir, New York City Ballet, Santa Fe Desert Chorale and Symphony, Seraphic Fire, Berkshire Choral Festival, TENET, Carmel Bach Festival, Opera Grand Rapids, New York Baroque Incorporated at Trinity Wall Street, LA Opera, Lincoln Center Festival, Oregon Bach Festival, Musica Sacra, Bach Collegium San Diego, Princeton Pro Musica, Bach Vespers Holy Trinity, Mark Morris Dance Group, Yale Choral Artists, American Opera Projects, Berkshire Bach Society, and Clarion. In addition to noted interpretations of concert and oratorio repertoire from Bach to Mendelssohn, Kate is sought after by composers and has premiered works and collaborated closely with Philip Glass, John Corigliano, David Lang, Martin Bresnick, Julia Wolfe, Missy Mazzoli, Hannah Lash, Nina Young, Dominick Argento, Christopher Cerrone, Daron Hagen, Matthew Welch, Paola Prestini, Ted Hearne, Lisa Bielawa, and Scott Wheeler. Kate toured the world for several years singing Einstein on the Beach and learning how to count numbers really fast. She holds a D.M.A. from Eastman, degrees from SUNY Purchase and Yale, teaches voice pedagogy at Mannes (The New School), and resides in Brooklyn with musician-husband Red Wierenga, son Ossian, and two adorable felines names Misha and Ayler. For schedule and more info:

Joseph Tompkins

Percussionist Joseph Tompkins has performed with the New York Philharmonic, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the New York City Ballet Orchestra, and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, among many others. He has played in twenty-three productions on Broadway, and has recorded soundtracks for a number of major films. For seven years he was a member of the percussion trio Timetable, a group committed to commissioning and performing new works for percussion. Tompkins has composed a number of internationally recognized works for snare drum, and has been commissioned as a composer by the New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, and Atlanta Symphony percussion sections. He has given masterclasses throughout the United States and across Europe