Palant is new music minister for Oak Cliff church

On Thursday, the Kessler Park United Methodist Church officially announced that Turtle Creek Chorale artistic director Jonathan Palant is the congregation’s new minister of music. Palant’s inaugural service will be May 22.

Here’s the full press release:


Noted conductor to guide music programs for Oak Cliff institution

Dr. Jonathan Palant, Artistic Director of the Turtle Creek Chorale, has been named Minister of Music at Kessler Park United Methodist Church effective immediately.  He will conduct his first service Sunday, May 22, 2011.

Palant, a resident of Dallas’ Kessler Park area, said, “Kessler Park United Methodist Church, very much like the Turtle Creek Chorale, is rich in its tradition and community involvement.  I look forward to growing the music ministry through unique musical programming, citywide collaborations and intergenerational activities within the church.  I am humbled by this appointment and enthusiastic about every aspect of this new responsibility.”

“We are delighted to have someone of Jonathan’s talents to guide our music programs,” said Reverend David Carr, Senior Pastor.  “We have always had an outstanding ministry of music for all ages – children, youth and adult – and with Jonathan’s direction, we anticipate an even greater level of participation and quality.”

Senior Pastor David Carr remarks, “We see Jonathan’s appointment as a critical element to growing our commitment within the Dallas and Oak Cliff community.  We have a significant ‘visioning’ initiative underway for the whole church having recently launched new initiatives for Generation X and Y adults, as well as programs for our Methodist Youth Fellowship.  It’s truly an exciting time of growth at KPUMC.”

Carr became Senior Pastor of the church in July 2010.

—  Rich Lopez

Drawing Dallas • 05.13.11

YendorrFNL_3Yendor Reese stands against transphobia and homophobia —in heels

MARK STOKES  | Illustrator
Name and age: Yendor Reese, 27

Spotted at: Kroger’s on Cedar Springs


Occupation: Mortgage case worker
Yendor received his unusual name from his father Rodney, who had a unique sense of humor (it’s “Rodney” backwards). With his strong religious upbringing, it was a natural that this handsome Taurus would pursue a career in music. Originally planning to become a music minister, he first pursued a vocal performance (opera) major at TCU before switching to communications/human relations with a minor in religion and music. The change gave him a deeper understanding of other religions and lifestyles, providing him a gateway to his own coming out. He was the first African-American to win “Mr. TCU” in the history of that university.

Yendor was the lead singer for the soul/rock group Soulever Lift, but the group’s plans were set back when their lead guitarist was picked up by Erykah Badu. Yendor writes music and poetry, and plays tennis whenever he can find time in his busy schedule.

His thoughts on International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia: An occasional cross-dresser, Yendor takes a live-and-let-live approach to human understanding. “Why should anyone tell another person who they should love or how to dress or what sex they relate to more? Humans need every color to be a complete rainbow. This day is
a reminder that life is a little bit better with every color — even if it is pink.”

TracieFNL2_1Tracie Hardin combines a green thumb with an artist’s eye

MARK STOKES  | Illustrator

Name and age: Tracie Hardin, 26

Spotted at: FedExKinko’s on Greenville Avenue

Occupation: Botanist/creative director

Indigenous interests: This slim Sagittarian has spent his entire life in Texas, graduating with a biology degree from Tarleton State University. He originally pursued a career in fashion but got disillusioned with the “fickle, cutthroat” retail industry. His lifelong interest in plants led him to his current job, working in a greenhouse. Unlike the fashion business, “plants only yield, and they don’t talk,” he quips.

Art and music: Tracie’s varied interests include creating portraits using recycled materials. “My work is mainly people’s faces and the stories behind them.” His music tastes veer toward rock/hip hop/soul (a fave is Nina Simone). Tracie also practices religious fasting twice a month.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 13, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas