Halifax’s only gay male choir performs live again after 2 years
Halifax’s only gay choir is performing live again after two years and having already sold 1,200 tickets, they say it’s clear the folks at HRM are ready and hungry for more queer entertainment.
âWe’ve already sold 85% of the tickets for our three shows, and it’s so exciting,â said Tim Cross, president of the Halifax Gay Men’s Chorus.
HGMC will occur December 9, 10 and 11 at St. Andrew’s United Church on Coburg Road in Halifax. Ticket prices are reduced for seniors and youth.
âEveryone is very excited to stand up and perform in front of an audience again. There’s nothing quite like performing in front of an audience,â Cross said.
HGMC started in 2018 and Cross says they only expected 20 people to sign up at most, but to his surprise he had tripled that number of interests.
Now they have about 55 people performing at their December concerts. Cross says there are already people waiting to sign up for the New Year’s choir, and it’s special to see the choir grow over the years.
“A very good mix”
âIt’s a really good mix. There are guys over there who are retired, and then there are younger guys who are just starting their careers,â Cross said. “It extends to all ages. So that’s one of the really exciting things for us.”
Adam Reid, executive director of Halifax Pride, says it’s good to see the queer arts community flourish.
âIt’s great that queer groups and individuals are taking up space like this, creating space with internal institutions that you may be familiar with, that could use education and in-depth reflection on their practices. “
St. Andrew’s Church has been an ally of LGBTQ people since 2017, and they say they couldn’t be happier not only to be the venue for HGMC’s comeback gig, but to have a relationship with them.
âWe are a welcoming and open community, and we proudly display the pride flag,â said Kevin Parks, Minister of Music at St. Andrew’s Church. “We just need to open our hearts to things we don’t necessarily understand and examine why we have the beliefs we have. We fully embrace and welcome everyone here in St. Andrew’s.”
Parks also says St. Andrew’s takes safety very seriously, so anyone attending the concert will be asked for proof of vaccination at the door and will be required to keep their masks on at all times. They will limit attendance to 400 people.
Susan Chisholm, minister at St. Andrew’s, told CBC News that providing that space is the least they can do, given the tribulations gay people still face today.
âThe Halifax Gay Men’s Chorus, with its magnificent vocals, is a beautiful expression of this. And the more time we spend together, the better, âsays Chisholm. âThe assault that has been – continues to be – waged against homosexuals in the name of religion is frankly blasphemous of the Christian gospel. “
Cross says the show will include traditional Christmas carols, but will also feature some old disco classics and be a great opportunity for people to not only enjoy familiar music, but also reconnect with their community.
âIt’s rare that there is an opportunity for young and middle-aged people to come together, and the support has been nothing short of remarkable,â says Cross. “There are so few opportunities for the LGBTQ community to come together in an organized fashion other than what is happening with Pride.”
Cross reflects on a poignant moment in his career when one of the group’s soloists performed the song My father’s son musical Kinky Boots. The song is about the emotional relationship between a gay father and son.
âWe had no idea what he was going to say as a soloistâ¦ and he basically said to the audience, ‘For anyone who feels marginalized or like, you’re struggling, you have a family here.’â
Cross says it’s something he will always remember: the LGBTQ community for many is the family they never had. Cross says that no matter your gender or sexuality, he hopes everyone walks away from his show feeling welcome.
“It’s a community that everyone is welcome to be a part of and the experience of which is open to everyone.”
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