Dr. John Romeri served for five years as the Music Director Of Sts. Peter and Paul Basilica and Director of Music in the Philadelphia Archdiocese. During that brief time, he profoundly affected the music of his denomination and the city at large. Dr. Romeri began the Cathedral Basilica Choir, re-instituted the Archdiocesan Choir of Philadelphia, founded the Archdiocesan Girls Choir, founded “Concerts at the Cathedral Basilica” which brought world-class music to the people of Philadelphia, and established an academy to offer training in Sacred Music. He was frequently consulted as a choral clinician throughout our region and in cities across the United States.
Jean Madden, Assistant Director under John Romeri, commented that “John was such a inspiration to work with. A bundle of energy and a bottomless spring of knowledge, which he graciously shared with anyone who asked a question.”
Additionally, John led or helped crusades to rescue pipe organs from closing churches and moved them to a places where they could be appreciated or restored. In this mission he frequently called on the staff at Cunningham Piano to help him in making decisions on which instruments were deserving of rescue. If a pipe organ was not possible for a church, he often recommended a Rodgers digital organ as a smart way to have the performance of a fine organ without the cost of a large traditional pipe installation.
In 2015, Dr. Romeri left Philadelphia and took the position as Director of Music Ministries for Christ Cathedral in Orange County California, formerly known as Crystal Cathedral founded by Dr. Robert H. Schuller. In this new position, he has had the rare chance to design the music ministry from the ground up in an exciting new Cathedral location. He is also overseeing the restoration of a world class pipe organ there, with work being performed by Fratelli Ruffatti, of Padua, Italy.
Our own Rich Galassini caught up with Dr Romeri at Christ Cathedral in Orange County. We invite you to join them in this fascinating look at the beautiful 34-acre campus and restoration work being done to the beautiful buildings and the historic Hazel Wright organ, the 5th largest organ in the world.