Best in Show - Festival Day 1
It is always an honor to open the GALA Choruses Festival. This is my third GALA in 15 years with CGMC, but somehow this one seemed more magical... It appeared that every seat in the Boettcher Concert Hall was filled; 2500+ eager audience members ready to take in CGMC's set "Feel the Love".
There was a raw connection between CGMC and the audience. For me it was because I had deep feelings about much of the content. Every one of us told a story that was empowering - I suspect that the story was a bit different for each of us. I felt exuberance dancing in Feel the Love in contrast to the tears streaming down my face in Why. I was a bit mad in Am I not Pretty Enough but hopeful in Today My Life Begins - AND the audience got it.
You know how they say - GALA delegates give standing ovations for anything and we got our share.
I could see smiles, tears, joy and hope in the faces of so many of the audience - we all felt the love.
Afterwards I joined my Aunt and Uncle (local Denver residents) to see the remainder of concert block 1C. They enjoyed the entire concert block, but gushed about CGMC. "You performed; sang, danced and entertained. The others did at least one of those things in their performances - but not like you guys providing all three throughout."
We had a celebratory luncheon at Osteria Marco (YUM!) and many chorines came by all still with stars in their eyes.
Later in the evening Gary and I attended the Pinnacle fundraiser. We shared a table with CGMC and WCPA compatriots. The fundraiser helped to put in perspective why the gay chorus movement is still thriving. Today we can make an impact on how the mainstream thinks and feels about the LGBT community and in doing so make it easier for up and coming LGBT youth to have an accepting and nurturing environment to be themselves. Dan Savage hosted the event and said it best "Everyone deserves to be respected for who they are. We must speak up against hate and intolerance. Let's provide hope for lesbian, gay, bi, transgender and other (bullied) teens by letting them know that "It Gets Better."
That evening we dined at Vendome - an exceptional French restaurant... Denver is a great city for foodies!
The evening ended with CGMC's Chicago Party! The Corner Office was packed, lines around the corner just to get in and rub elbows with us. I met delegates from all four corners of the US and some international delegates as well. Our fabulous accompanist Jimmy Morehead led four of CGMC's Divas in a condensed version of Kander and Ebb's Chicago. Kudos to D'Manda Donation for hitting those lady like low notes, Lilly Boquet for her ever lashing wit, Ethel Bourbon whose rendition of Mary Sunshine had me questioning what parts she actually had in her nether region and the poignant but always hilarious Dixie Lynn Cartwight.
I could not be happier to spend a full day like this with the men and women of CGMC whom I love dearly – you are my chosen family and I am always proud to share the stage with you.