Denver Gay Men’s Chorus performed at St. John’s Lutheran Church on 6-28-2019/ Their performance coincided with 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. The song selection exposed me to a rash of emotional cleansing moments. The coincidence of attending this concert was initiated by accidentally meeting Herb Toplan while waiting on the ½ price ticket booth on Times Square. Herb was a member of my temple’s chorus and had moved to Denver many years ago.
Before the Parade Passes By threw me an emotional wrench. My friend Paul of forty years had been a lover of anything Jerry Herman. Another friend Lynn Miner was a member of the Los Angeles Gay Men’s Chorus. Both Paul and Lynn died within a year of each other eleven years ago. Their deaths haunt me. The flush of tears during the song filled me with their ghostly presence. Taking the Oscar winning “Glory” including a rap section was chilling despite the lack of air conditioning in the church. Garth Brooks richly appropriate “We Shall Be Free” was mesmerizing. “This is Me” from The Greatest Showman erased all the corny cliché lyrics to an unapologetic a spiritual uplift. The poignant “True Colors/Brave” was a stunner. Guest artist Carolyn Montgomery supported by a pianist, bass, and guitar had audience flourishing with loving hope.
This is the kind of theater that frees your soul.