- Music Education - Vocal
- Class of 2016
Answering a Call to Ministry
A lifelong love of music and a desire to teach inspired this TCU student to study music education. After graduation, John Philip Antinone plans to apply for the Fulbright to teach English abroad and eventually enter the seminary to earn a masters in divinity.
Phil is a doer.
For John Philip Antinone, musical talent runs in the family. Both his father and step-mom are choir directors, and as a high school senior, the Bedford native was the president of the choir department and performed in musical theater. A degree in vocal music education seemed to be the perfect fit, but Phil made a break from tradition when he decided to attend TCU.
“I did the Monday at TCU experience,” says Phil about his first time on campus. “I realized that TCU was going to be the one school that would allow me to explore who I wanted to be, and give me the opportunities and resources to be successful. If you choose the school that listens to your needs, you not only find the university you want to invest in, but the one that invests back into you. That’s what TCU’s done for me.”
Now a senior, Phil has fully embraced his Horned Frog identity, serving as a tour guide for the Student Foundation, joining Beta Upsilon Chi, the Christian fraternity on campus, and participating in several TCU clubs including choir, cheer, rowing and TCU’s Frog Camp. And he’s managed to do all of this all while holding a spot on the Dean’s List for three semesters.
“My freshman year I had the opportunity to sing backup for Andrea Bocelli,” explains the baritone. “I realized I couldn’t let these four years pass without taking every single opportunity to absorb the perks of being a TCU student.”
In fall 2014, Phil also had the opportunity to study abroad in Genoa, Italy, where he was the only American at the university.
“I got to teach people what the Horned Frog was,” he says. “And I learned how to say ‘Vai rane!’ which is ‘Go Frogs!’ in Italian.”
The four months he spent in Italy were pivotal for him, and Phil plans to return to Italy after graduation.
“I’d like to apply for the Fulbright to teach English in an Italian high school,” explains Phil. “While I’m in Italy, I’ll begin to apply for seminary for a masters in divinity.”
The senior says that he has felt a calling to ministry since he was a freshman in high school, and he hopes to attend seminary at Harvard or Yale. Ultimately, he dreams about starting his own church in Italy.
“People typically have a five-year plan—I have a fifty-year plan,” he jokes. “I told my advisor from day one what I wanted to do, and we’ve been working toward my goals ever since.”
In the meantime, Phil serves as the worship leader at Whites Chapel United Methodist Church in Southlake, directing Sunday morning rehearsals and preparing the weekly worship music.
“I believe that ministry is anywhere and everywhere, and that’s why I chose music education at TCU,” Phil explains. “Music will always be part of my life. Those are the gifts and talents that God’s given me.”
Phil says that TCU has both inspired him and kept him grounded in his own faith journey.
“It’s up to you to make your faith your own in college,” Phil explains. “TCU allowed me to adopt the faith I want for myself and choose where I want my faith to go.”