Above: the old St. Alphonsus parish theatre, now refounded as the Athenaeum Center for Thought and Culture
Our readers should be aware that The Catholic Art Institute will be hosting its 4th annual conference, this year themed “Art & Virtue.”
The event will take place on Sunday, October 30th, beginning with High Mass at St. John Cantius at 12:30pm, and moving to the nearby newly refurbished Athenaeum Center for Thought and Culture. As always, the event will draw the best and brightest of Catholic artists and aesthetic thinkers from around North America and the world, but one need not be a professional creative to attend: the CAI has always been purposeful in drawing in fans, patrons, and lovers of beauty as well, and this year has created the option to purchase tickets for as little as 48 dollars!
The striking Catholicity of the event begins with the High Mass aforementioned, where for many attendees this becomes their first encounter with a Latin Mass done at such a high level. At 1:45pm busses are on hand to take attendees from the Church to the Athenaeum Center, where registration takes place and a catered lunch is available during this open social time. Speakers begin at 3pm in the newly restored Athenaeum theatre, ushered in by renowned Catholic architect James McCrery, whose lifetime of experience always comes through in his fascinating talks. Then this year’s Scottish invasion begins with Alexander Stoddart, the King’s Sculptor in Ordinary. This is Stoddart’s second talk for a CAI conference, and he will provide another hour of wit, erudition, and belly-aching hilarity.
The evening’s keynote speaker is none other than Sir James MacMillan, Scottish composer and conductor. Sir MacMillan (a faithful Catholic who has never shied away from his faith in the public square), is one of the most performed living composers in the world, and listeners can expect a strident and inspiring talk from this living legend.
In between talks there is social and networking time, while attendees can also purchase a ticket to the catered dinner and panel discussion, which will be moderated by William Newton, Art Critic & Contributor to Spectator World. At the end of the evening, further social time and a cocktail hour will take place.
Attendees at previous conferences have come away energized and inspired, and have commented on the strong camaraderie and sense of purpose the event inspires. This year’s tiered ticket prices allow a wider variety of attendees to join the inspired day, with tickets for presentations available at the door. Tickets which include lunch, dinner, and the panel presentation must be purchased by October 22nd. For more information about this spectacular event, please visit the website.
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