Father Alphonse Stephenson

Father Alphonse's very first orchestra was formed in New York's Theater District while he served at St. Malachy's, the Actor's Chapel. His conducting debut was with bass soloist Paul Plishka of the Metropolitan Opera. In 1980, the late Broadway director and choreographer Michael Bennett engaged him as conductor and music director of his smash hit, A Chorus Line. Father Alphonse conducted over three thousand performances of the record-breaking musical.

A student of the late George Schick of the Metropolitan Opera and Dr. Robert Abramson of the Juilliard School, Father Alphonse has been guest conductor of the Fresno Philharmonic, Delaware Valley Philharmonic, Metro Lyric Opera, the Greater Palm Beach Symphony Orchestra and the Key West Pops Orchestra.

Recently retired as Chaplain, Brigadier General and Director of the Joint Chaplaincy Staff at the National Guard Bureau, he also served as Air National Guard Assistant to the Air Force Chief of Chaplains at the Pentagon. Ordained a Catholic priest for the Diocese of Paterson in 1975, Father Alphonse has been awarded a Doctorate of Music (honoris causa) from Monmouth University.

Cecelia Foundation

Responding to the great need to introduce young people to good music, Father Alphonse is founder of the Cecelia Foundation, a non-profit organization funded solely through private contributions and the sale of our Christmas recordings, which brings the full orchestra to Catholic schools throughout the state and awards professional quality instruments to deserving students.

Orchestra of St. Peter by the Sea - can be reached at 732-775-0820

Jim McIlvain - jim_mcilvain@yahoo.com.