November 2, 2013 — The holiday season often reminds us of times spent with loved ones. This year as it launches a new member of its own family, the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus celebrates family members both given and chosen in Seasons of Family, the AGMC’s 33rd holiday concert. The 2013 edition of this beloved annual event will be presented Friday, Dec. 6 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 7 at both 2 and 8 p.m. in the concert’s long-time home, The Cathedral of St. Philip, 2744 Peachtree Road NW in Buckhead. Tickets are now available online.
Since the late 1990s, the AGMC holiday concert has been presented amidst the grandeur of The Cathedral, the South’s largest Episcopal cathedral. The church continues to be the perfect venue for this moving and joyous holiday celebration.
“The Cathedral itself must be considered one of the recurring ‘guest stars’ of our December holiday concert,” said Kevin Robison, now in his seventh year as the AGMC’s artistic director. “Its reverent beauty and ringing acoustics greatly add to the experience for both our audiences and the chorus itself. We feel extremely privileged to be welcomed back each year.”Buy tickets now »
Celebrating Families, Including One of the AGMC’s Own
The holiday concert will feature a number of special arrangements of familiar holiday tunes, from “Home for the Holidays” to the Peanuts “Christmas Time is Here,” “I Saw Three Ships,” Benjamin Britten’s “This Little Babe” and the amusing “Throw the Yule Log On, Uncle John” and “Good King Kong Looked Out” by P.D.Q. Bach.
The concert will premiere a special “Ave Maria” written by Robison dedicated to the memory and service of Dennis R. Nance, who joined the chorus in 1981, its first year, and was the AGMC’s longest-singing member. Nance died in July 2013.
“For so many of us, Dennis was the AGMC,” Robison stated. “Over the years, he welcomed hundreds of new members to the chorus family. He arranged or adapted countless songs that have made our concerts so special. He was a long-standing member of Panache, our select ensemble, and for many years Dennis had the time-consuming but mission-critical task of keeping our thousands of pieces of music catalogued and available. He is so greatly missed, particularly as we approach the holidays, and we dedicate this song to him.”
The concert will also feature the song for which the event is named, “Seasons of Family,” recognizing that many of us have not always felt welcomed at holiday gatherings.
“You don’t have to be gay or lesbian to feel like you don’t quite fit in during holiday family or work events,” Robison noted. “But we’ve certainly had so many times where we couldn’t bring along someone we considered a life partner and have him or her treated the same as the other husbands and wives. This song recognizes that fact, yet celebrates that we each make our own families — chosen, not always given. And it’s a message that the AGMC itself welcomes all persons to the chorus family. As the song says, ‘our door is always welcome, our greeting’s always warm as we come together to celebrate the joy of peace and harmony’ during this most hopeful of seasons.”
New AGMC Family Members to Perform
Speaking of welcoming family members, the AGMC family expanded this fall to include the new Atlanta Women’s Chorus, which will make a cameo appearance at the men’s holiday concert as it prepares to launch its own groundbreaking concert season.
“We have been so proud to launch the AWC under the administrative banner of our new Voices of Note organization,” said Eric Klem, board chair. “The response of our women’s chorus project this past spring was exceptional, and we have more than 40 women singing under the direction of the talented Dr. Melissa Arasi. We’re glad to officially welcome them to our family at the holiday concert, and look forward to their first stand-alone concert in February.”
The AWC will present Finding Her Here: In and Out of Love on Feb. 8. See voicesofnote.org for more details or to participate in the next cycle of auditions.
Free Saturday-Afternoon Ice Cream Social
Again this year, the holiday concert’s Saturday matinee will feature group-friendly prices and be followed by a free ice cream social, making it a special and affordable event for all ages. As in years past, the social is graciously provided by the Zweifel Law Firm and Peachtree Battle Chiropractic.
Season and Holiday Tickets Now Available
Tickets are now available for a combined AGMC/AWC season of entertainment, seasons of each individual chorus, or tickets to the holiday concert. Season subscribers receive the best seats in their chosen section for each concert, along with discounts for later purchase of additional tickets.
To purchase season subscriptions or holiday concert tickets today, call (404) 320-1030 or buy online through the choruses’ website.
About the AGMC, AWC and Voices of Note
Through the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus and the Atlanta Women’s Chorus, Voices of Note, Inc., presents entertaining and thought-provoking performances that appeal to a diverse audience and promote equality for all people.
The AGMC was established in 1981 and is today one of the world’s longest-running all-male choruses. The AWC was launched by the AGMC in 2013.
Both choruses are members of GALA, the Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses.
Voices of Note 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. Other support comes from the Metropolitan Atlanta Arts Fund, the City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs and The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta.
The AGMC’s 33rd season is produced by Atlanta Magazine and Smirnoff. Other supporting organizations include Macy’s, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, St. Mark United Methodist Church, Brandon D Hunt Design, Dan Lax Media, Saks Fifth Avenue, Ameriprise Financial, Peachtree Battle Chiropractic, Southwest Airlines, and St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. A complete listing of financial supporters — and how you can support the mission of the two choruses — can be found at voicesofnote.org.