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September 2, 2009
Year for Priests concert set Sept. 24
By John Gleason
Refreshing, moving, exhilarating. These are but a few of the adjectives used to describe the music of Eric Genuis, composer, virtuoso pianist and recently turned Colorado resident, who will be performing in a Year for Priests concert 7:30 p.m. Sept. 24 at St. Thomas More Church.
The concert, co-sponsored by the Denver Catholic Register, the Colorado Catholic Herald and St. Thomas More Church in Centennial, is free and open to the public. Priests, in particular, are warmly invited to attend as the event is being held in honor of the Year for Priests.
“The aim of the concert,” said Genuis, “is to celebrate, encourage and lift up the priesthood.”
Performing with Genuis will be vocalist Linda Easter and violinist Liesel Schoenberger.
For more than a decade, Genius has traveled around the world, from the United States, Canada, Australia, Austria, France, Germany and Poland performing for millions of people. To date, he has recorded four CDs as well as having composed music for film, television and Internet media. He achieved honors in performance piano from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and completed course work in film scoring from the Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Possessing a deep interest in music since he was a youngster, Genius said all his compositions come from his heart—from the joys and sorrows that he’s experienced throughout his life.
“The funny thing is I thought that music would be something I’d do for my own enjoyment,” he said. “I never thought it would have been something I’d do for a living.”
Currently, Genius is in the middle of a concert tour in Texas comprised of 30 performances not only in concert halls, but in schools and even prisons. It’s a grueling pace but Genuis said the riggers of the road just seem to roll off him.
“The travel, the tours; it never gets old,” he said. “I’m grateful to do it and I’m having a ball when I’m out there.”
According to Genius, creating music for others is a way of communicating his inner thoughts and ideas. He said it’s always been his greatest wish to share the profound beauty and splendor that can be found in music.
“It’s simple,” he said. “Art has always been a wonderful expression of God.”
An Eric Genius concert has been described as a definite must-see and have proven riveting for all, from contemporary music lovers to the most sophisticated classical musicians. Small wonder that he has earned praise not only from noted composers such as Joel Sill (music supervisor for “Forest Gump”) and composer John Debney (“The Passion of the Christ”), but from others right here in the archdiocese.
In July, Genuis performed at the annual deacons meeting in Denver. One of those who witnessed the performance was Deacon Joseph Benjamin of St. Joseph Parish in Akron. Deacon Benjamin, himself a vocalist, said the music he heard was passionate and profound.
“It was a very moving concert,” he said, “and I think many people there were taken to tears either through joy or sorrow. It’s simply music that touches your heart.”
Genius seemed almost embarrassed when told this.
“All I can say is that the hour and a half on stage is sheer bliss,” he said. “I can’t describe it any better than that. It gives me such joy to perform and share this music, this art, with an audience.”
St. Thomas More Church is located at 8035 S. Quebec St. in Centennial. No tickets or reservations are necessary to attend the concert. For information, call Mila Glodava, 303-221-9240.
YEAR FOR PRIESTS CONCERT
Featuring: Pianist-composer Eric Genuis
When: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 24
Where: St. Thomas More Church, 8035 S. Quebec St., Centennial
Cost: free and open to the public
Contact: Mila Glodava, 303-221-9240