Heartland Men’s Chorus Announces Season Marked by Growth and Change

Heartland Men’s Chorus has announced its 28th season: a series of programs notable for its scope and variety. It will also be the last season programmed by outgoing artistic director, Dr. Joseph Nadeau. Nadeau will conduct the chorus for its holiday concert in December, and then join the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles as artistic director. The entire season was programmed by Nadeau before the announcement of his departure, and it will reflect his artistic vision and ambition.

“Joe’s artistic leadership is largely responsible for the phenomenal growth of HMC during the past 15 years,” said Kathy Dunn, Board chair. “We’re lucky to have one last season to savor his artistic influence as we continue to grow.”

That growth is evident in the season ahead, which includes the Midwest premiere of a major new work co-commissioned by the chorus, and an expansion of its season from seven performances to eight.

The chorus begins its season with the holiday concert, Baby, It’s Cold Outside, December 6-8, 2013. More than 3,000 audience members each year join the chorus for its holiday program due to its mix of traditional music and outrageous humor. This season’s offering is woven around the theme of winter weather. The chorus will sing “White Christmas,” as one might expect, but the comic songs “Lavender Christmas” and “Black Christmas” are also on the program.

“We’ll also get the chance to showcase the musicianship of the chorus,” said Nadeau. “We’ve got some numbers featuring tight harmonies arranged by Deke Sharon, the arranger for the group Straight No Chaser and musical supervisor on the film ‘Pitch Perfect.’”

March 29 and 30, 2014, the group presents the Midwest premier of the oratorio I Am Harvey Milk, a song cycle written by Broadway composer Andrew Lippa (the Tony Award®-nominated composer of The Addams Family and The Wild Party), commissioned by HMC and five other gay men’s choruses. Celebrating the life and legacy of the first openly gay person elected to public office in California, the work’s eleven movements represent the eleven months Milk spent in office before his assassination.

“I was struck with Harvey Milk’s quote ‘You gotta give ‘em hope,’” said Nadeau. “I think audience members will find this concert inspirational and informative, but above all hopeful.”

Gateway Men’s Chorus from St. Louis, Missouri, will join HMC for the concert, and HMC will travel to St. Louis for an encore performance the following week.

The chorus presents Vegas, Baby June 13-15, 2014, its most elaborate physical production to date. The concert will feature the music of Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra from the Las Vegas “Rat Pack” era, as well as hits from contemporary Las Vegas headliners such as Celine Dion and Bette Midler. Guest artists include renowned Liberace impersonator Martin Preston and magician David Sandy.

“And our own unique take on Las Vegas showgirls, of course,” added Nadeau.

Guest conductors for the chorus’s spring and summer concerts will be announced in autumn. All performances take place at the Folly Theater, 300 West 12th Street, Kansas City, Missouri. Season tickets from $72.00 – $114.00 are available now by phone at (816) 931-3338 and online at https://hmckc.org.


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