Conducting for the Coming King!
You have no doubt heard of Daphne Sequeira, the creator of a choir that many look forward to for Don Bosco’s midnight services at Christmas and Easter / Holy Week. With practices starting 3 months prior to Christmas, it’s no wonder this commitment rings in the Birth of Jesus with all glory and honor fit for a King. Daphne’s Choir deeply enhances the solemnity of the midnight mass with the right selection of hymns and carols that bring home the meaning of Christmas to all those who listen.
She’s more than just a Conductor – She’s a singer, a musician, a teacher, a spiritual mentor and a friend to those who she trains. “You can fulfil just about anything if you are dedicated to your mission in serving the Lord and are prepared to invest in all the hard work called for” says Daphne. Today’s music and attitude that come as a package, stray the youth as far away from church as you can imagine. But Daphne successfully charms these youngsters towards church music with her positivity and encouragement. This is testified by the number of budding musicians and singers in her choir. Daphne’s voice is one that these youth want to hear more of. Daphne feels that she has to share her gift with those around her and believes that singing hymns as St. Agustine says is ‘Praying twice’. She has imparted this even to the youth answering exams that God does not forget the sacrifice made by those who give their time to singing and practices. Presently she continues to tutor a number of students at the Don Bosco Oratory in voice training and keyboard with children ranging from the tender age of 4 years to adults. Besides training others, Daphne has not only trained her daughters Martina and Melody but even her young granddaughter Rebecca who sang her first Carol ‘Away in a Manger at the age of 5 years for the midnight mass at Don Bosco. Under her training and guidance, Rebecca recorded her very own gospel CD called ‘Wonderfully made” composed by her mother which is a favourite amongst the children. Daphne has members of the choir who come from as far as Calangute, Mapusa and Vasco for practices and this year included Jolene who is physically challenged but as spirited as all the other members. Her choir is a blend of the young and old alike with loyal members still in attendance as it was 25 years ago when the choir was formed. The choir is also blessed with Ruben, a budding composer who wrote the music / harmony for this year’s Gloria and parts of the mass, not only for the vocals but also for the stringed quartet who joined in for the very first time and was a well-blended addition to the Choir. Committed musicians like Xavier Peres, Ian Noronha, Darryl Figueiredo, Glen, Chernoll Mendonca among others have time and again rendered their talents and this is what sets Daphne’s Choir apart… they work as one family. With this desire to make a difference even to those who are unable to attend the midnight services, she inspires her choir to join in once again for the morning services on Christmas and Easter and the members keep up this commitment. It’s not an easy task to manage a choir strength of 45 to 50 members, but Daphne does it with ease. Her conducting skills go way beyond the notes and words onto something far more spiritual and meaningful. Her motivation is always the Lord who provides the people and talents required to do His work. The results are there for everyone to hear.
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