Matthew Schulte joined the HMC Board in 2015.

He is also a member of the Kansas City Royals Family. Matthew started with the Royals 10 years ago in the front office. While he started out in the Ticket Sales department, he has spent most of his time in various roles within the Marketing team. He now serves as the Senior Manager of Special Events and Promotions and is responsible for the giveaway items and special ballpark events. He was involved in executing MLB Jewel events that the Royals hosted, including the 2012 All-Star Game Festivities, 2014 Postseason, and the 2015 World Championship.

He was also a member of the Kansas City Chamber’s Centurions Leadership Program and received an ACE Diversity Award from this same Chamber. 

Meet Lamar Sims Celebrating 20 Years With HMCKC

Season 38 brings quite the milestone we will be recognizing all season. HMCKC accompanist, Lamar Sims is celebrating his 20th year with the chorus. 

Such well-deserved recognition! We are so grateful for the commitment and talent Lamar has brought to our mission and vision. 

Lamar is also the principal accompanist for OUTside Voices KC, among other ensembles.

You can hear Lamar next in our holiday concerts on December 2, 3, 5, and 10th. More info at

HMCKC HeartAches Return!

For two decades now, the Heartland Men’s Chorus has utilized a small group of singers to perform different styles of music while representing the chorus when all 90-150 members weren’t available. From difficult acapella barbershop music, classical chamber selections, or Broadway-style theatrical moments, the HMC small ensemble was often the first boots on the ground delivering the mission of HMCKC into the KC community.

The first small ensemble of HMC was called “Heartbeat”, created under the leadership of Reuben Reynolds III in the Spring of 1992. Under the leadership of Joe Nadeau, “The Heartaches” were born and stayed together through his final performance in 2014. The ensemble then changed its name to “The Burnt Ends” with Artistic Director Dustin Cates and kept that name through 2019, the start of Artistic Director Shawn Cullen’s tenure with HMCKC. After the COVID-19 Pandemic, HMC reemerged with 77 singers, and the focus was on building back the full ensemble, but now, 140 strong, Artistic Director Shawn Cullen has resurrected the small ensemble, embracing the name of the longest tenure of success, “The Heartaches”. Auditioned this past July 2023, 16 members of HMC have been chosen as members and made their debut performance with Liz Callaway and Ann Hampton Callaway at this season’s Evening of Note.

Look for The Heartaches during this season’s holiday production and save the date(s) February 8, 9, and 10 as The HeartAches perform their stand-alone cabaret, “What’s Love Got To Do With It” at the Black Box Theater, just in time for Valentine’s Day 2024.

Cullen’s Corner

What a year last year was! From the largest ticketed holiday show in HMC history to the sold-out “After All- 60 Years of Cher” spring show to the epic Disney Pride in Concert- we took a big leap in musical excellence, theatrical presentation, and audience growth! One of the biggest challenges I face each and every season is answering the question that everyone asks- “So, how are you gonna top that?” Even though I have over 50 original career productions under my belt, the pressure to produce something that singers and audience members alike will love is sometimes completely overwhelming. 

Creatives often use a process at the beginning of their career rooted in imitating others. Through the learning process, programming moves naturally to assimilation and finally into the final stage of creative producing, innovation. No matter what, each time a producer or writer creates something for the stage, it takes a massive amount of vulnerability and trust grounded in experience and skill (still, always terrifying). 

This season we are taking a fresh, innovative approach to our holiday show by creating an original theatrical storyline with characters and a plot to guide our audiences on a holiday adventure. “A Very Merry Christmas Pageant” is an original musical production that follows all members of HMC as they represent various parts of Kansas and Missouri and compete for the title of “Mister Merry Christmas”. You’ll find out the backstory of a few contestants as they partake in several elements of competitive pageants, all while being judged by three guest judges from the KC arts community. This hilarious and heartwarming production will keep you giggling in your seat as you listen to 140 voices performing an eclectic mix of music to get you in the holiday spirit. You’ll hear everything from “My Grown Up Christmas List” and “Do You Hear What I Hear” to non-holiday pop songs through a holiday lens, like Laura Branigan’s 80’s hit- “Gloria”! Now we just need to figure out how to fit all these singers on the Folly and Yardley Stage! As usual, myself and our leadership team stay so very grateful for the community support of HMC, and we can’t wait to bring our music with a message to Kansas City once again this 38th Season!

Shawn Cullen