November 16, 2011 — Beautiful music. Beautiful surroundings. Beautiful bells. And — dare we say it — some beautiful men in tuxes as well?
The 100-voice Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus (AGMC) is now selling tickets online for the three performances of its Friday and Saturday, Dec. 9-10 holiday concert, long a popular seasonal tradition at The Cathedral of St. Philip. Located on Peachtree Street in Atlanta‟s Buckhead neighborhood, the largest Episcopal cathedral of the Southeast is as much a part of this entertaining and moving holiday event as the chorus and its music itself.
“The AGMC has been privileged to hold our holiday concerts in The Cathedral for over half of the chorus‟ history, and we always feel privileged to present our annual „gift‟ to the community in this exquisite space,” said Kevin Robison, the chorus‟ long-time artistic director and a recent recipient of the 2011 Fenuxe 50 awards recognizing influential members of the Atlanta area‟s gay and lesbian community. “Going back to The Cathedral every year is like going home…and many of our audience members say the same thing.”
As in previous years, performances for the AGMC‟s “Bells in Boyland” will be held Friday at 8 p.m., and at both 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday. Ticket prices range from $15 to $40, depending on performance and seating preference. Parking is plentiful and free.
The AGMC is proud to share the stage for its 2011 holiday concerts with some special guests. Now in its 10th season, The Atlanta Concert Ringers are experts in the art of English handbell ringing, performing in arts festivals including Piccolo Spoleto and events sponsored by the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers.
“They will truly add to the audience‟s experience on selections such as our own unique arrangements of „Silver Bells‟ and „Carol of the Bells,‟ as well as other songs both with the chorus and in the ACR‟s own featured performances,” Robison said.
“Bells in Boyland” will also include guest soloist W. Dwight Coleman, director of the School of Music at Georgia State University and an internationally acclaimed vocalist. He is also the general/stage director of the nationally recognized Harrower Summer Opera Workshop and resident stage director of the La Musica Lirica Summer Opera Festival in Italy.
Coleman will be featured in the concert‟s centerpiece, Ralph Vaughan Williams‟ “Fantasia on Christmas Carols” — a work that will also feature Mitch Weisiger, associate director of music for Decatur First United Methodist Church, at The Cathedral‟s stunning Aeolian-Skinner organ.
“It‟s a treat to perform the fantasia with male voices — a scoring supervised by the composer, yet infrequently performed,” Robison added.
And as in recent years, the Saturday 2 p.m. AGMC matinee will not only feature discount ticket prices, but a free ice cream social following the performance. Sponsored by The Zweifel Law Firm and Peachtree Battle Chiropractic, “The ice cream social has become a highlight for many of our perennial attendees, particularly families with young children,” said Ann Pinyan, AGMC board chairman. “Coupled with lower ticket prices for the matinee, we strive to enable families with children — and children of all ages, for that matter — to attend.”
For the best holiday concert seats at The Cathedral, the AGMC encourages you to go online and purchase your tickets now at www.agmchorus.org. Tickets are $40 (platinum section, which often sells out), $30 (gold) or $20 (silver) for the evening performances, with a $5 discount for each section for the Saturday matinee.
For more information, see the AGMC web site or call the chorus office at (404) 320-1030.
Established in 1981 and today one of the world‟s longest-running all-male choruses, the Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus entertains, educates and connects audiences through music that is distinguished for its creativity, diversity and artistic excellence. The chorus is a member of GALA, the Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses, and Chorus America, a 1,600-member non-profit organization that foster the chorus music experience in the U.S.
The AGMC is supported in part by the Georgia Council for the Arts (GCA) through the appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The GCA also receives support from its partner agency, the National Endowment for the Arts. The chorus also is supported by the Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund and The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, and by PwC (PriceWaterhouseCoopers, LLP), St. Mark United Methodist Church, First Metropolitan Church of Atlanta, Outwrite Bookstore & Coffeehouse, The Zweifel Law Firm, Peachtree Battle Chiropractic, and Daemon Baizan Photography. A complete listing of financial supporters — and how you can support the mission of the Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus — can be found on agmchorus.org.