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Peter Kolar is Senior Editor of Hispanic Music and Publications for WLP, having joined the editorial staff of WLP in 1996. He oversees development of the Hispanic liturgy resources, music, and recordings produced by WLP. Peter is the founding editor of the bilingual missal, Celebremos/Let Us Celebrate® and the editor of its companion music resource, the Himnario/Hymnal. He also spearheaded the second edition of WLP’s Hispanic hymnal Cantos del Pueblo de Dios.

 

A native of Detroit, Michigan, Peter's father is Polish-American and his mother is from El Salvador, Central America. Music and culture were an important part of his upbringing. Peter began formal piano instruction at age 7 and was playing regularly for Catholic Masses by age 10. After graduating from St. Lawrence Seminary High School in Mount Calvary, Wisconsin, Peter went on to study music at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, where he earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in composition. He resides now in El Paso, Texas, where he continues his full-time work for WLP while remaining active in the diocese as a liturgical consultant and coordinator for its music ministry formation program. Peter sits on the board of directors for the Southwest Liturgical Conference, and is the director of the El Paso Diocesan Choir.

In 2012, after years of concentration in other aspects of ministry and publishing, Peter revisited his passion for piano and released a much-anticipated classical CD, "Variations", a solo album showcasing his talents as a gifted performer and composer. The CD’s playlist features Peter’s masterful arrangements of sacred hymns, as well as his own works. Due to its inspired originality and classical appeal, “Variations” has earned widespread praise and positive reviews.

In addition to his solo CD, various other songs and arrangements by Peter are available through WLP, notably the acclaimed bilingual Mass setting "Misa Luna" (chosen by several dioceses and archdioceses as an official setting), the bilingual intercessions “Oración de los Fieles”, and the best-selling "El Señor Es Compasivo", a serene, bilingual setting of Psalm 103.

In 2004, Peter was commissioned to write the theme song for the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, one of the largest annual gatherings of Catholics in the world. The result of that effort was the hit anthem, "Healing Balm", which uses contemporary beats, pop styles, and rap in a compelling song for mission and sending. You can hear "Healing Balm" sung by artists Danielle Rose and Tony Alonso with “PK” himself performing the spoken rap on the CD "God Is My Rock".

Before moving to El Paso, Peter served for 14 years as the Music Director at Holy Cross/Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Chicago, Illinois, where he led its renowned Marimba Ensemble. Performances by the Holy Cross Marimba Ensemble under his direction include appearances at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, NPM conventions, and Chicago’s Symphony Center. Though no longer actively involved in the group, Peter continues to do guest appearances with the Marimba Ensemble, collaborating as recently as 2012 for a performance in Los Angeles. Under his tenure, the Marimba Ensemble released two recordings, "Marimbas Fantásticas, Volume I" and "Marimbas Fantásticas, Volume II", both available from WLP.

A respected composer and arranger, Peter has contributed much to today’s liturgical repertoire and ministerial landscape. One of his significant contributions has been his notated piano accompaniments to Spanish-language pieces. In addition, Peter has gained a reputation as a skillful instructor on authentically emulating Hispanic styles and rhythms on the keyboard. Peter remains a dedicated and sought-after bilingual clinician in the areas of liturgy, music, and ministry. He appears frequently at various events, conferences, and showcases nationwide.

 

Aclamacion del Evangelio/Gospel Acclamation

Aclamación del Evangelio/Gospel Acclamation

Al Partir el Pan/When We Break This Bread

Al Partir el Pan/When We Break This Bread - Click & Print

Alaben Todos/Let All the Earth Praise: Salmo 148

Ave Maria

Ave Maria

Ave Maria

Ave Maria - Palazon/Kolar

Ave Maria - Palazon/Kolar - click and print

Christ Is Risen

El Auxilio Me Viene del Señor/Our Help Is From the Lord: Psalm 121

El Auxilio Me Viene del Señor: Psalm 121/Our Help Is from the Lord: Psalm 121

El Señor Es Compasivo/The Lord Is Rich in Kindness: Psalm 103

El Señor Es Compasivo/The Lord Is Rich in Kindness: Salmo 103 Click and Print

Eso Me Basta, Señor / All That I Need

Gusten y Vean/Taste and See: Psalm 34

Gusten y Vean/Taste and See: Psalm 34 - Click and Print

Hail Holy Queen - Rose/arr Kolar

Hail Holy Queen - Rose/arr Kolar - click and print

Healing Balm/Canto de Misericordia

Healing Balm/Canto de Misericordia - Click and Print

Healing Balm/Canto de Misericordia (Instrumental Parts) - Click & Print

Litany of the Saints - Kolar

Litany of the Saints - Kolar - click and print

Litany of the Saints - Kolar - flutes oboe horn trumpets violins - click and print

Los Confines de la Tierra/All the Ends of the Earth: Salmo 98

Mi Alma Tiene Sed/My Soul Is Thirsting for You: Psalm 63

Misa Luna - Guitar/Vocal Score - Click and Print - Kolar

Misa Luna - Keyboard/Vocal Edition - Click and Print - Kolar

O Christ the Healer We Have Come/When I Behold the Wondrous Cross/O God of Love - Kolar

O Christ the Healer/When I Behold/O God of Love - Kolar - click and print

O Lord of Light - Kolar

O Lord of Light - Kolar - click and print

Open Wide the Doors to Christ

Oracion De Los Fieles - Kolar - click and print

Oracion de los Fieles (Bilingual Intercessions)

Pan del Cielo (Bread of Heaven)

Pan del Cielo/Bread of Heaven - Click and Print

Psalm 130: Del Señor Viene la Misericordia/With the Lord There Is Mercy

Si No Me Acuerdo de Ti: Salmo 137

Stand in the Light

Tesoros Ocultos/Treasures Out of Darkness

Tesoros Ocultos/Treasures Out of Darkness - Click & Print Instrumental Parts

Tesoros Ocultos/Treasures Out of Darkness - Instrumental Parts

Tesoros Ocultos/Treasures Out of Darkness Click & Print

Through the Eyes of God

Through the Eyes of God

Ven, Oh Espirítu/Come, Holy Spirit/Halina Espiritu

Ven, Oh Espiritu/Come, Holy Spirit/Halina Espiritu - Click & Print

Ven, Salvador/Come Savior Lord - arr. Peter Kolar

Ven, Salvador/Come Savior Lord - arr. Peter Kolar - click and print