HMCKC Becomes Top 2022 AIDS Walk Kansas City Team

HMCKC Becomes Top 2022 AIDS Walk Kansas City Team

For the past 34 years, Kansas City has come together to raise money to support those men, women, and children affected by HIV and AIDS with AIDSWalkKC and the AIDS Service Foundation. The foundation provides educational and financial resources to four local organizations that directly support the more than 5,700 men, women, and children in Kansas City affected by HIV/AIDS.

Heartland Men’s Chorus kicked off our fundraising campaign to support AIDSWalk Kansas City 2022 at the end of February and set a goal of $15,000. Heartland Men’s Chorus has a long history of support and is one of the many proud sponsors of this iconic event. As members of the organization, we came together and created fundraising pages, participated in raffles to raise money during rehearsals, collected donations after our Spring and Summer concerts, and donated to personal fundraising pages. In addition, on the day of the walk, during the opening ceremonies, we entertained and created event energy by singing three songs from our Spring concert.

We are proud of the efforts of our membership and the support of all those who donated. We raised $14,036 and, although short of our $15,000 goal, ended as the top contributing fundraising team for 2022. We know all these funds stay local and look forward to being an AIDSWalkKC 2023 Partner.

HMCKC’s First Executive Director is Retiring After 25 years!

After 25 years of dedicated service to HMCKC, Executive Director Rick Fisher will retire on June 30, 2022. In Heartland Men’s Chorus Kansas City (HMCKC) history, only one individual has served as Executive Director.

For over two decades, Rick has worked diligently to ensure the financial security of the Chorus. He has established himself as a leader in the local LGBTQIA and Kanas City arts communities. Throughout the changing history of the last 25 years, Rick has served as an unwavering and constant influence for the Chorus.

Rick’s legacy looms large in the history of HMCKC. It seems only appropriate that his accomplishments be recognized as he retires. At his suggestion, we are asking you to join us in honoring him by donating to our endowment fund, a fund that Rick helped create. We hope to raise $25,000 to celebrate Rick and ensure a bright future for HMCKC. Any questions regarding the endowment fund and/or this fundraising effort can be sent to Dudley Hogue, Development Director, at

Rick will be honored at our performances of Unbreakable at the Folly Theater on June 11 and 12, 2022. We hope you will be there to help us celebrate Rick and his invaluable contributions to Heartland Men’s Chorus.

Heartland Men’s Chorus Presents Unbreakable: A New Musical About Queer History

From Selma to Stonewall, the common attribute of our country’s most powerful social justice movements is resilience. Unbreakable presents a historical arc of the experiences of LGBTQ people over the last 12 decades, weaving a musical tribute to how our community has evolved, triumphed, suffered, and soared. This new musical co-commissioned by HMCKC and 8 other choruses from across the United States is brought to you by Tony Award-nominated composer Andrew Lippa (I Am Harvey Milk, The Addams Family, Big Fish, The Wild Party).

Through the 75-minute concert, you’ll learn of the often untold stories of LGBTQ+ people who truly changed history. Joining the chorus on stage include local guest artists Kristen Altoro-Nevins, Joel Morrison, Malik Hughes, and Stacey Stofferahn.

HMCKC presents the Great Plains premiere of UNBREAKABLE on June 11th & 12th at The Folly Theater. Tickets on sale @


About Heartland Men’s Chorus

Heartland Men’s Chorus ( is Kansas City’s gay men’s chorus, now in its 36th season. Founded in 1986 with 30 singers to make music, HMCKC quickly became a safe oasis for a community scarred by fear and hatred.  Now with 80 singers, HMCKC is a vital part of Kansas City’s robust arts and cultural scene, making the historic Folly Theater its performance home for 27 years. More information can be found at Heartland Men’s Chorus. 

Meet HMCKC Board Member: Michelle Fox

  • When did you become part of HMCKC?

       My first experience was attending a holiday concert in 1996. I absolutely loved it. I felt so warmly embraced by an instant family.  Not only could I see that the Chorus was proud, strong, and fun-loving, but the audience also contributed to creating an inviting and congenial atmosphere.  I have tried not to miss the holiday concert (in particular) since that time, because it always brings a great sense of family, love, and graciousness.  I became truly involved in 2003 when my wife joined the Board, and we volunteered regularly for events.

  • Why did you want to join the HMCKC board?

   When we returned to KC, after living away for 5 years, I knew I wanted to immediately reconnect with the Chorus.  I wanted to join the Board to help lead the Chorus during the difficulties of COVID, overcome those challenges, and meaningfully contribute to this ever-evolving group of dedicated people. I hope to provide intelligent, practical, and considerate leadership while the Chorus continues to develop as a creative, innovative, and community-building organization.

  • What song makes you happy?

“Walking on Sunshine” and “I Shoulda Been a Cowboy”


Meet New HMCKC Member: Raven

  • You are one of the newest members, so how did you hear about HMCKC and why did you want to join?
I heard about HMCKC from one of the member’s children when I was in High School. We participated in choir together and she had invited me to attend one of the shows with her. The first show I saw was called “Falling in Love Again” in ’13. It was an emotional show about 1920s Berlin. It invoked in me something powerful, I was inspired to be brave and never stray from the path of happiness. No matter how hard it may be because a better day awaits. That feeling sat with me for many years, I continued to perform and went to college pursuing a music degree. I never felt confident enough to really let myself free, I went to performances sporadically, and continued paying attention, until one day I finally had the nerve to audition. 
  • What has your experience been with the chorus?
Since I auditioned, I have found a family. A quirky, amazing, beautiful, loving family. HMCKC just pulls you in, gives you one of the biggest bear hugs ever, sits you down, and wraps you in comfort. Every. Single. Member is happy to see you, genuinely wants to know you, and supports you. The members and staff of the chorus are so incredibly helpful and want you to succeed and challenge yourself to be the best and most authentic self that you can be. There is nothing more satisfying, and empowering than being a part of a group that truly builds each other up and wants you to be YOU!
  • Why should someone support HMCKC?

Our Mission is “To build Community, Celebrate Pride, & Empower Authenticity.” And through every step of the process, it is upheld. Through continual support from our Director, Section Leaders, Other Chorus Members, Executive Board Members, and most importantly our local Kansas City Patrons, we get to build and do something great in our city. We empower our community through one of the most powerful forms, the Arts. We get the chance to touch the heart and soul of a person who is in need of a loving and support message. HMCKC is about changing lives, one song at a time.

Help HMCKC Elevate Its Future

Tickets are still available for ELEVATE – an urban garden party benefiting the Heartland Men’s Chorus Kansas City!
Join us on Sunday, April 24 on the rooftop deck at Two Light Luxury Apartments for great entertainment, fabulous food, and stupendous cocktails!
  • The best bourbon cocktails in town provided by West Bottoms Whiskey Co.
  • Gorgeous decor provided by Gregory’s Fine Floral
  • Stunningly beautiful cookies by Woodland Cookies – and they’re tasty, too!
  • Food provided by some of your favorite restaurants!
  • Fine wines from Mike’s wine and Spirits
  • Get your photo taken by a professional photographer
  • Incredible music provided by the small ensemble from Heartland Men’s Chorus Kansas City
  • Enjoy the incredible views from the inspired Two Light Luxury Apartment rooftop space
  • Indoor and outdoor space available
  • Support the Chorus that you love – and enjoy the fellowship of our HMCKC family

Go to for details – and get your tickets today.

1986 by Jeffrey Porter

Now’s Your Chance to Join or Come Back to the HMCKC Singing Family!

HMCKC alumni singers!
Have you missed singing and performing?
Missed the fellowship and connection?
The participation in part of a beautiful legacy and a new evolved mission and vision?
Now’s your chance to come back to the HMCKC singing family!

Sign up below for your returning singer voice check for 8/24 or 8/31 with the LINK BELOW or join us for an open rehearsal on September 7th and/or September 14th at Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral- Founder’s Hall from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Returning singer voice checks will be held after open rehearsals and will include the same voice checks occurring on 8/24 and 8/31.

Schedule your audition here:

HMCKC is committed to the health and safety of our singers and we do require proof of COVID-19 vaccination prior to participation. Please bring a digital copy or paper copy of your proof of vaccination and a mask to your voice check and/or open rehearsal.

Please be prepared to sing a song of your choice or a simple traditional song like Amazing Grace, America the Beautiful, etc. If you choose an excerpt on your own, please bring sheet music with the excerpt marked for our accompanist. We will do a quick and painless check for matching pitch, hearing and singing harmony, call and response aural recall, assess your level of music reading, and a vocal range check.

Questions? Visit or contact Artistic Director Shawn Cullen, at

HMCKC Announces Enhanced Safety Measures For All Members

For 36 seasons the Heartland Men’s Chorus has entertained audiences in Kansas City. In the last year, all performances moved online because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, but we are planning for in-person performances for this new season.

HMCKC is committed to our singers’ health and safety, and we do require proof of COVID-19 vaccination prior to participation for all singers and non-singing members of the chorus.

“It’s been far too long since we’ve been able to make music, create fellowship, and deliver our message of love and acceptance! The health and safety of our singing members remains our first priority and we’ll stay hyper-vigilant until we pass through this moment of our legacy. Embrace the newness of today’s world with new ways to invite joy into your life- join us!” says Shawn Cullen, Artistic Director and Conductor of the chorus. 

Heartland Men’s Chorus is utilizing enhanced safety measures for Season 36 including the wearing of masks, indoor social distanced small ensemble singing, the use of outdoor rehearsal spaces, reduced contact rehearsal protocols, truncated rehearsal times, and the use of proper HVAC air filtration in rehearsal and performance spaces. All HMCKC members are now required to show proof of being fully vaccinated with a paper or digital copy of their COVID-19 vaccination card. 

The Heartland Men’s Chorus plans three in-person concerts for Season 36, starting with our annual holiday concert, Joy, scheduled at the Folly Theater on December 4th and 5th. 

The Reasons HMCKC Members Love The Chorus

For 35 seasons the Heartland Men’s Chorus continues to build community, celebrate pride, and empower authenticity. We love to share stories from our members on how they found HMCKC and why their support is still strong.

New Member – Ryan Ledet 

“I first saw HMCKC at the ’14 pride festival and instantly wanted to join! I wanted to join HMKC because I wanted a sense of community and to sing of course! The idea of being in an inclusive set of individuals and singing, helped me build my confidence as a singer too.”


Legacy Member – Jason Blaisdell 

“The chorus is a beacon of friendship, love, and acceptance for me and the LGBT community in KC, the region, the country, and even the world. I am so in awe of the huge outreach and recognition that HMCKC receives wherever we perform.”


Board Member – Sandy Schermerhorn 

“HMCKC is a community treasure. Its concerts reach out to all, promoting inclusiveness, warmth, joy, and healing. And the performances are magical!! I was asked to join the board by a longtime friend and singer. He was aware that I attended most of the season’s concerts, since I sat in the first row at the Folly, and I clearly enjoyed the performances.”


HeartLight Member – Blaine Diaz 

“When I lived in California I was part of the Orange County Gay Men’s Chorus. When I moved here in 2009 it was supposed to be temporary, but after a year I decided to get involved with HMCKC after many of my former OCGMC members encouraged me to reach out. Since I joined HMCKC has afforded me the opportunity to rebuild my life.” 


The next HMCKC concert is Saturday, June 12th at 7 p.m. CDT on our YouTube Channel and Facebook Page.