ABOUT MARK HOWELL
W. Mark Howell was born in the Parish of Portland, Jamaica West Indies. His musical talents were recognized at the age of 10 when his older brother, Alton Howell, noticed Mark playing a popular song on the piano that he had heard played on the radio. That incident prompted his mother, Bernice, to have formal piano training for Mark from his step-grandmother, Marian Howell. At the age of 13 after his step-grandmother’s death, Mark succeeded her as Organist and Choir Director of their church –Manchioneal Methodist Church. Three years later, Mark migrated to the United States of America and served as Organist and Choir Director for the Asbury United Methodist Church, Mt. Vernon, N.Y., a position he held for 13 years. He then served at St. Stephens United Methodist Church in the Bronx, NY, and later at St. Augustine church also in the Bronx, NY. Mark later served as Minister of Music for St. Charles Borromeo Church, Harlem, N.Y. – a very vibrant and active parish in the Archdiocese of New York. Mark is currently the Music Director of Saint Joseph and Saint Boniface church in Spring Valley, New York.
Mr. Howell studied at Herbert H. Lehman College in New York where he received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Management with a minor in Music. Mark also attended the Juilliard School of Music Evening Division, where he participated with the Juilliard Choral in performances in and around Lincoln Center. Mark also participated with this Group in the New York Philharmonic’s 150 Years Celebration –a Tribute to Leonard Bernstein – at Alice Tully Hall in 1993. Mark has also conducted and performed with his choir, The Mark Howell Singers at several concerts held at Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center.
Mark, an Organist, Pianist, Conductor, and Composer/Arranger, has written several choral and solo pieces. Many of Mr. Howell’s compositions have been composed especially for those among his closest friends who happen to be singers/musicians. The works of this talented composer remind one of Franz Schubert who often turned his thoughts and feelings about the events of his life into songs. It is so that one of his friends, a soprano, calls him Schubert. Schubert is also Mark’s favorite composer.
The pinnacle of Marks’ Ministry of Music was achieved in September 2015 when he led a combined Choir of 54 Voices from St. Charles Borromeo Church/Chapel of the Resurrection in a Pre-Papal Mass Concert for Pope Francis. This was held at Madison Square Garden in New York City where one of Mark’s original Compositions, Unceasing Praise, was performed with a full orchestra and with his soloist, Carla Harris. Mark, along with this choir, was also featured in the Wall Street Journal as well as on NY1 TV News station.
For Holy Week of 2014, Mark traveled to Germany where he had the distinct privilege of ministering for the Holy Week Service at St. Marien Church in Füerstenberg, Germany. One of Mark’s original compositions, his Communion Anthem, Here At the Table, was performed by the Choir of St. Marien Church and has been performed since at other venues in Germany. His other compositions, Be Still and Know, sung in English and German, as well as Midnight Blessings, were also performed by Carla Harris and were received with exuberant rounds of applause.
In 2012, Mark digitally released The Lord Is My Shepherd, a duet for Soprano and Tenor sung by Gail Blache-Gill and Clinton Ingram. This was composed for the 50th Independence Celebration of Jamaica, West Indies, and held at the Riverside Church in New York City. In 2013, Mark Released his first CD, Here At the Table (Songs of Eucharistic Celebration) featuring the Mark Howell Singers and several other artists. In 2014, Mark wrote and released the single, From Up Above, recorded by Wendell Holden, after a near-tragic incident involving a robbery at gunpoint. He dedicated this song to his Mother, Bernice McDonald who has passed away and who he felt was watching over him throughout that entire ordeal. In 2019, Mark composed The Babe of Bethlehem for soprano Karen Parks and the Mark Howell Singers for a performance at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem, New York. This song was also featured in a benefit concert at Carnegie Hall in 2023. It is also recorded and released on all digital platforms. Mark was also featured in the Magazine, Black Impact, which features unsung heroes who are making a positive impact in the lives of others as well as on society at large.
Mark gives all praises and glory to God for having granted him the gift of music that he asked for so diligently as a child.
Oh wow! This website is long overdue.; this is too good to be kept private;
You are a talented musician, singer and composer who is passionate about your craft and possess a natural ability
and the willingness to achieve pinnacle. Mark, it has been an honor to work with you in the past 10 years because you treat me and everyone around you with great respect and professionalism. I wish you great success in the industry and continue to carry your craft to the place of unparalleled delight.
This is a great achievement throughout his life , God will continue to bless him.
Mark is a genuine, loyal and talented person that anyone would want to be around. I admire his determination and enthusiasm for the music industry. He has an extraordinary talent and he is a great songwriter. All of his achievement is a testament, passion and hard work. Determination and perseverance have paid off in a big way. If anyone hears him play, conduct, and perform, consider themselves lucky. One of a kind on this earth. He has been gifted from God at an early age. I truly like one of his pieces. It is one of my favorite, inspiring, and calming. Just he is absolutely the greatest musician.