During their Spring Session in Syosset March 29—April 1, 2016, the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops awarded the Order of Saint Romanos to Dr. Vladimir Morosan and Aleksei Shipovalnikov in recognition of their extraordinary contributions to the field of liturgical music in the Orthodox Church in America.
A native of Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Aleksei V. Shipovalnikov served as Artistic Director and Manager of the Moscow State University Symphony Orchestra and Academic Choir. His post-graduate studies included a master class with Leonard Bernstein in Moscow in 1988. He has also conducted in West Germany and Poland, where he established a reputation for innovative programming in spite of the political risks involved during the communist era. Such ventures included the presentation of the first Stockhausen Festival in the USSR and the establishment of the “Fellowship of Musical Evenings” in Moscow under the auspices of Moscow University and the Russian Musical Society in 1985. Mr. Shipovalnikov immigrated to the US in 1990 and has been a guest lecturer at Columbia, George Washington, Princeton, Stanford and Southern Methodist Universities and Professor of Liturgical Music at Saint Tikhon’s Seminary, South Canaan, PA. In 1991, he was appointed Music Director of Slavyanka Men’s Slavic Chorus. Two years later, he recorded the world premiere of Shvedov’s “Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom” for Harmonia Mundi. In 1994 he was named Artistic Director of the Concertino Chamber Orchestra in Moscow and, in the same year, he directed choral selections for the musical soundtrack of the film, Little Odessa, with Twentieth Century Fox. He is Founder and Director of the Spirit of Orthodoxy Choir and Music Director at Saints Peter and Paul Orthodox Church, Jersey City, NJ.