On Wednesday, December 26, 2012, nearly 600 alumni and friends of the St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute music program gathered at SJCI to celebrate the career and artistic ministry of mentor-teacher James V. Deiotte.
From the fall of 1974 until this past spring of 2012, Jim was at the helm of Western New York’s most robust and successful choral music and musical theater program. Through his work with SJCI’s Freshman Singers, Glee Club, Varsity Singers, Swing Choir, LaSallian Singers, and Alumni Men’s Ensemble, as well as his work with the casts of thirty-eight consecutive spring musical productions, Jim shaped the lives of thousands upon thousands of young men and women. Over the course of almost four decades, Jim enriched the Lasallian network by bringing the St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute Swing Choir and Varsity Singers to perform at Lasallian schools, institutions, and events – both near and far.
Known as much for his spirituality, generosity, and passion as for his virtuosity and expert pedagogy, Jim is the sort of teacher and man who makes a strong impression on everyone that he meets. That is why more than thirty men and women who sang under Jim’s leadership teamed up to plan and organize the December 26 festivities—a massive display of gratitude and affection for an outstanding musician, educator, and individual. The concert and tribute can be viewed online at www.sjcigiftsofgrace.com.
Jim credits in large measure the example of the Christian Brothers and the Lasallian vision of education as being major motivations during his thirty-eight year ministry as a Catholic educator in the Lasallian tradition.
Photo: Jim Deiotte captured in a moment of peaceful reflection, while traveling in Montserrat, Spain with the Alumni Men’s Ensemble, July 2012.