Greetings to all my faithful readers out there. I know you are out there because I have gotten feedback from you. I found some new to me material in the chorus archives from 1993 that I want to share with you. These show the outreach the Chorus was doing in the community beyond San Francisco. And in print.
First I found a program from the Silicon Valley Gay Men's Chorus for a concert they produced in March of 1993 called "Classic Memories" held in San Jose. They were directed by Lynne McLaughlin. Their special guest was our jazz octet Menage. The concert featured classic pop music from 1890 to the 1940s with music such as "Bicycle Built for Two", "Ah, Sweet Mystery", "The Charleston", "Sing Hallelujah", "I Got Rhythm" and "Someday My Prince Will Come". Menage performed "Java Jive", There, I've Said It Again", "Time After Time", and "I Remember You". Both groups combined to sing "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" as the finale.
The second program I found was one that was In Celebration of Gay Pride Month for GALEEMAS (Gay and Lesbian Employees Association at Pacific Telesis) on June 18, 1993. This was held in San Ramon and the chorus performed songs from our concert "Fantasies: Fairy Tales Can Come True". We sang "Be Our Guest", "Never Never Land", "At the Ballet", "If I Were/I'd Like To Be", "Money Medley", "Beauty and the Beast", "Co-dependent Medley", and "Imagine". This was one way we went on the road to widen our audience and do what we do best - sing for our audience and have fun doing it.
There were two items I found that fall into the print category. The first one was an article in "Alice Reports", which was the newsletter of the Alice B. Toklas Lesbian/Gay Democratic Club. It was titled "Lesbian/Gay Chorus: 13 Years, 'Together in Harmony'". It highlighted the fact that we are the oldest "mixed" chorus in the country and talked up all our endeavors - our concerts, fundraisers, outreach programs, and support of San Francisco community events.
The article also mentions our Cable Car Awards for the chorus and Menage. Also it talks about our sold-out smash hit "Fantasies: Fairy Tales Can Come True" concert and the upcoming 15th Annual Pride Concert which we hosted. My takeaway from this was you never know where the name of the chorus will show up with new praises for us.
Also in 1993 the chorus published two newsletters which were mailed to our friends, family and audience members to let them know of what we had done and what was upcoming. This was called "LGCSF Newsline" and we had two issues, one in April and the other in October. In the October issue we announced the arrival of our first recording "Together in Harmony" coming out in March of 1994 and available on CD and cassette tape - yes Virginia this was way before music streaming and iTunes and Spotify. There was a photo of the chorus in Denver at the 1992 GALA Festival in the atrium between the performance halls. There was also an article about our fall concert which would feature music by gay and lesbian composers. One would be a world premiere written by our pianist Dwight Okamura of three poems by Marguerite Radclyffe-Hall (188?-1943) who was a writer and poet. Her most famous book was "Well of Loneliness". Pat Parr gives thanks to Rodger Pettyjohn for starting the "Composers" concert tradition. Four other members of the chorus also composed music for this concert so it was their world premieres as well. Are there any composers out there either in the chorus or in my readership who would like to have the chorus perform them. Just let our AD, Michael Reilly, know.
One more thing of interest. In the April issue there was an article about our 1993 Annual Fund which was our way then of fundraising for the chorus. It mentions that even a $25 contribution would help and that only ten $25 donors keeps our piano tuned for a year. That's it for this week but as I dig deeper into the archives I will be sharing more LGCSF history with you next week.
In love and harmony, Michael Lucero