presenting "Beyond Oz: The Music of Harold Arlen," which will serve as
the chorus' summer concert as well as the close to its 1999/2000 season.
There will be three performances this weekend at The Alex Theatre in
Tony Award-winning actress Lillias White and "Forbidden Broadway" star
Jason Graae are featured guests, during what chorus member Thom Blackmore
describes as "a musical biography of Arlen."
Blackmore, a member of the chorus since 1993, has served on the board
of directors in the past, and has even produced concerts for the chorus.
The Burbank resident has noticed that production values have risen in
the past four to five years.
"This show looks like it may be a legend in the making," he says.
"Every time I think I might take a concert off, it just keeps getting
better and better."
Part of the mission of the chorus is to build bridges of understanding
within the community, says Brian Wyatt of Glendale, chorus managing
"There are so many stereotypes about gay men, but we're really just
plain folk. We have neuroscientists, doctors and lawyers among our
members," he says, laughing, "but not one florist or hairdresser, though
it's not intentional.
"This is the fun concert of the season," Wyatt says. "They'll be
having a great time on stage, doing pieces of musical theater the way
only GMCLA can do them. I expect to see a lot of the audience nudging
each other, as they realize how many songs by this great composer they
already know. Watching people's reactions is part of the fun for me."
Sure to get a reaction will be a staged segment of songs from "The
Wizard of Oz." There will be visits made by Dorothy, Glinda the Good
Witch, the Wicked Witch of the West, the Munchkins and more, all
portrayed by members of the chorus.
Oh, and Toto, too -- but whether two or four-legged, no one is saying.
IF YOU GO
WHO: The Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles.
WHAT: "Beyond Oz: The Music of Harold Arlen."
WHEN: 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 3 p.m. Sunday.
WHERE: The Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale.
TICKETS: $15 to $35.
PHONE: (800) MEN-SING.