Buffalo Gay Men’s Chorus to perform at Fredonia Opera House

The 1891 Fredonia Opera House will present the Buffalo Gay Men’s Chorus in a concert featuring music from Hollywood and the Broadway stage on Friday at 8 p.m.

Under the guidance of Artistic Director Ciaran Krueger, the BGMC is one of western New York’s premier choral ensembles. In its spring 2014 concert program, Rise Up Singing, the group performs selections from Hollywood movies and Broadway shows including “The Sound of Music,” “Hairspray,” “Ragtime,” “Rent” and “Wicked,” among others.

Dedicated to producing vocal music of high quality in the rich tradition of men’s choral singing, members of the BGMC sing to create harmony while celebrating pride in the community and in themselves. This well-known ensemble is recognized for their lush harmonies, laughter and excitement.

The idea of forming a gay men’s chorus in Buffalo was first conceived in 1999. Guided by Roger Parris (still an active member of the chorus), a group of men worked throughout the following year to make the BGMC a reality. Auditions were held in May 2001 with 36 members on board that first day. Soon there were more than 50. At the first rehearsal, the group learned and sang the long-lived and classic American hymn, “How Can I Keep from Singing?” The song remains to this day the BGMC theme song and a continuing reminder for its members of the mutual family togetherness and inspiration that the Chorus always aspires to attain.

Today, the BGMC boasts more than 70 members. Over the years since its creation, it has commissioned numerous compositions and special arrangements of music, often by well-known local composers. Several awards have been bestowed on the organization, including the Empire State Pride Agenda’s ESPA Award for community service and a Buffalo and Erie County Arts Council Award for exceptional contribution to the arts and community in Western New York. The group has twice been invited to perform with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and once with Ars Nova. Artvoice has repeatedly proclaimed the group Buffalo’s “Best Choral Group.”

Tickets to the BGMC are $15 ($13 Opera House members, $10 Students) and may be purchased in person at the Opera House Box Office or by phone at 679-1891, Tuesday through Friday, 1-5 p.m. They also may be purchased online any time at www.fredopera.org.

The performance is presented, in part, with support from the United Arts Appeal of Chautauqua County.

The 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported, not-for-profit performing arts center located in Village Hall in downtown Fredonia.

A complete schedule of Opera House events is available at www.fredopera.org.