- World’s First Gay Chorus Connects With Its Roots In Landmark 30thAnniversary Concert
San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, the first chorus with the word “gay” in its name, takes center-stage at Louise M. Davies Symphony Hall on December 1, in celebration of its thirtieth anniversary and to mark World AIDS Day. Setting a high-water mark for the gay choral movement, award-winning Broadway composer, Steve Schalchlin, has writtenNew World Waking! Songs on the road to peace - inspired by John Lennon’s Piano especially for the occasion. Artistic Director and Conductor, Dr. Kathleen McGuire, says:“New World Waking!is truly a piece for our time and captures, in music, stories of incredible power, pathos and hope.”
In thirteen emotional, genre-transcending songs,New World Waking!explores violence in our community and in the world and celebrates the individuals who stand up to it and change the world in the process.New World Waking!The Community Women’s Orchestra provides full accompaniment. Two songs tell the true stories of ordinary mothers who fought against the homophobia their gay sons faced and both women will be in attendance on December 1st. McGuire explains:“The chorus was so moved by the stories that they clubbed together and have donated their own money and air miles to make this happen. This spiritual connection to the incredible music and the stories is something we invite you to share with us.New World Waking!tells us that, in the face of hatred and adversity, one person truly can make a difference.”Grammy award-winning guest star, Jennifer Holliday will join the chorus to sing the suite’s rousing finale, “My Rising Up.”
A special arrangement of “Guardian Angels” sung with Kim Kuzma and dedicated to the caretakers of those who struggle with HIV is the centerpiece of a tribute, introduced by three-time Academy Award nominee Piper Laurie, to those lost to the AIDS pandemic. The concert concludes with an upbeat selection of holiday music, reflecting the diverse traditions of the Bay Area.
Tickets for the 30th Anniversary Concert start at $20 and are available from the community box office at the LGBT Community Center (1800 Market), by phone at (415) 865-2787, or online atwww.sfgmc.org. A portion of all proceeds will assist HIV/AIDS charities Under One Roof, Meals of Marin, and the Positive Resource Center.
McGuire concludes:“For thirty years the Chorus has sung for you. We invite you to join us on December 1, and we hope that when you listen to the chorus it awakens the beautiful voice in your heart.”