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Back by popular demand!
2nd Annual Karaoke FUNdraiser
Friday, June 19, 2015
7:00 pm – 12:00 am
Cat ‘n Fiddle Pub
540 – 16 Avenue NW, Calgary
Admission: $10 at the door
Singing begins at 8:00 pm!
Come early to ensure a good seat and sign up for our exciting “Duet” and “Impersonation” contests. Don’t like singing alone? Buy a “Pip” or a “Lifeline” or even buy the entire OVC Chorus.
We look forward to seeing you there!
The 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard started a global conversation about hate crimes and has since become one of the most (in)famous symbols of the potentially devastating consequences of homophobia.
In the song “What Matters”, singer-songwriter Randi Driscoll uses Matthew Shepard as the “brightest angel” in all of us. He asks us to think about a few of the important conversations that began after Shepard’s death:
We invite you to join us for our last concert of the season, Rainbow Connections: A Pride Concert. OVC is partnering with Calgary's Gay-Straight Alliance network to tell our stories of love and courage. By singing together, and learning together, we can reflect on where we’ve been, where we’re headed, and how to support those who struggle.
Here's a sneak peak of “What Matters” as performed by One Voice Chorus Minnesota, conducted by the wonderful Jane Ramseyer Miller.
In the week leading up to OVC's Make the Yuletide Gay concert last December, a debate raged at the provincial legislature and in social media on the topic of gay-straight alliances (GSAs) in Alberta’s high schools. GSAs are student-led organizations that work to create positive environments for LGBTQ students. At the time, it looked as if the proposed provincial legislation would have forced some Alberta students to go to court if they wanted to start a GSA.
Since then, Alberta has become a national leader for positive change in Canada’s debates on sexuality and gender expression. Students themselves convinced then-Premier Jim Prentice of the importance of GSAs in their lives, leading the Progressive Conservatives to reverse their position. This past March, the members of Alberta's legislature voted nearly unanimously to allow GSAs in every school where a student requests one.
In warm support of GSAs and the courageous teenagers who are working so tirelessly to make their school communities safe and welcoming for LGBTQ students, One Voice Chorus invites you to join us for Rainbow Connections: A Pride Concert.
The GSA students are, in the words of pop star Jewel, most certainly living "A Life Uncommon". We hope you will join us on June 7 to "hear our voices ring out clear with sounds of freedom."
One Voice Chorus performed to two full houses at its Club Carousel concert in March. Now OVC is back for the final concert of its 2014-2015 season: Rainbow Connections: A Pride Concert!
Joined by members of a local gay-straight alliance (GSA) as special guests, OVC presents a concert that celebrates Calgary's strong and inspiring Rainbow Connections.
About the GSA, OVC Artistic Director Jane Perry says, “These are high school youth who understand the value of gathering together to celebrate individuals, honour differences, and shine a light on common bonds.”
We invite you to join us in welcoming these youth into our community as they teach us about theirs.
The concert is three weeks away, still. This is a good time to order your tickets (and a few for your friends and family, too).
To whet your appetite for the concert, here's a sneak preview of one of our favourite songs for this concert: Anders Edenroth’s wacky "I Sing, You Sing", as performed by The Real Group in 2007.
OVC's annual karaoke FUNdraiser has been POSTPONED until June, on account of the Flames playoff game on April 17. We just can't sing loud enough to compete with enthusiastic fans at the pub!
Stay tuned for a new date in June!
On the opening night of Club Carousel, Calgary’s first-ever gay dance club, the police arrived, and informed those present that if they were found gathering on the premises the next night, they would all be charged with “operating a cabaret without a license.” Despite the police warning, many brave members of the society showed up the next night anyway.
But so did the police, who arrested and charged the members as warned.
Renowned Calgary defence lawyer, Harvey Ghitter, offered his services to those charged, and according to the late Jack Loenen, an original member of the Scarth Street Society, by the time those charged went to trial, “the original police charge was thrown out of court as we were classified as a social club (open only to members and their guests) and not as a cabaret.”
Gradually, word spread about Club Carousel, and it became an inspirational model for the formation of other gay clubs in Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, and Winnipeg. These clubs dramatically altered the gay social scene on the prairies and, for the first time, created safe social spaces for LGBTQ communities across the prairies.
So, in many ways, Calgary’s Club Carousel and its members became a bridge that enabled other members of the gay community to reach out to each other. It is that bridge, and the strong networks that it has enabled, that OVC will celebrate at its CLUB CAROUSEL concerts on Saturday, March 28.
The concert is just one day away. The evening show is already sold out and tickets to the afternoon show are selling fast - be sure to get yours soon!
Picture it: 1968. A small group of folks, members of Calgary’s underground gay community who call themselves the Scarth Street Society, are cleaning up an empty space downtown with the plan of opening the city’s first gay dance club.
According to the late Jack Loenen, an original member of the Scarth Street Society, “As we were working, we discovered an old can of Carousel brand paint, with a drawing of a carousel horse on the label. And that was it! The Club Carousel was born.”
Featuring Top 40 hits from the late 1960s and early 1970s, including favorites such as “Bridge Over Troubled Water”, “Joy to the World (Jeremiah Was a Bullfrog)” and “Lean on Me”, OVC’s upcoming Club Carousel concert is a homage to Club Carousel and its pioneering founders.
Tickets are selling fast – be sure to get yours soon!
Club Carousel logo
One Voice Chorus performed to a sold-out house at our holiday concert this past December. Now we’re at it again, paying a well-deserved tribute to pioneering members of the Scarth Street Society. The Scarth Street Society founded Club Carousel, Calgary’s first-ever gay dance club, in the late 60s. That was back when being gay was still illegal in Canada—not really all that long ago.
“With this concert, we aim to celebrate these gay and lesbian heroes who were building safe space for the queer community,” says OVC’s Artistic Director, Jane Perry. “They paved the way for community organizations like One Voice Chorus and I feel we owe them a debt of thanks. The choristers and I look forward to telling their collective story in music and in narration.”
Despite the enthusiasm and commitment of Club Carousel’s founders, discretion was essential. And since the Club was located on First Street SW, historically known as Scarth Street, they chose “Scarth Street Society” as the name of their group. But the members clung to their vision of welcoming as many people as possible.
With that vision in mind, OVC’s Club Carousel concert will feature a rendition of Carole King’s “You’ve Got a Friend ”. This song reminds us that, while things are better for Calgary’s queer community, our struggle for acceptance and basic human rights is not yet over.
So, invite a friend or two of your own and snag some tickets to OVC’s upcoming concert in celebration of Club Carousel!
Just can't get enough of OVC's wonderful stuff?
Join us this weekend at Alberta's Choralfest 2015! OVC will be performing two crowd-pleasing favourites at this adjudicated, non-competitive festival for choirs. Tickets to the event are free -- simply show up and have a great time!
One Voice Chorus takes the stage at 12 noon on Saturday, March 7, at Knox United Church(506- 4 Street SW, Calgary). Audiences are encouraged to enjoy all that Choralfest has to offer over the entire weekend of song!
For more details, go to Alberta Choral Federation's website.
One Voice Chorus is at it again, and this time we’re celebrating our city’s gay history with a spectacular homage to Calgary’s first gay dance club, Club Carousel!
Back when being gay was still illegal in Canada, Club Carousel emerged out of the efforts of an organization of gays and lesbians called the Scarth Street Society. The club served as a beacon to all members and all genders of Calgary’s underground gay community. It provided a place to, in the words of its own them song, “be happy and gay.”
Sung to the tune of “It’s a Marshmallow World”, the theme song reminded Club Carousel’s patrons:
You can’t sing the blues
When you’re being cruised,
You’re lucky in a lot of ways.
Join us on March 28, 2015 for all your favorite Top 40 tunes from the ‘60s and ‘70s, including “Sweet Caroline”, “You Are The Sunshine Of My Life”, and “Dance To The Music”. Special guest Kevin Allen, a local historian of Calgary’s gay community (Calgary Gay History Project), will share a glimpse into the life and times of Club Carousel and its patrons.
Saturday, March 28, 2015
Two shows! 2:30 pm & 7:30 pm
Unitarian Church of Calgary
1703 - 1 Street NW, Calgary
There are four long weeks to wait to hear One Voice Chorus sing again. In the meantime, though, mark your calendars, order your tickets (and a few for your family and friends, too), and get a sneak preview of Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline”.
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