Music/Event: 2021 GALA (Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles)

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by Connor McCormick on July 9, 2021

in Concerts / Events,Music,Theater-Los Angeles


Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles (GMCLA), one of the country’s longest-running and largest LGBTQ arts organizations, will hold its annual gala fundraiser on Saturday, August 14 at 8:00 pm. The event will be streamed live from the Toluca Lake home of GMCLA Board Members Greg Weaver and Haig Youredjian. With a limited live audience in attendance, the streaming audience will enjoy the hour-long show hosted by Carson Kressley of Queer Eye and RuPaul’s Drag Race fame, with live performances by GMCLA’s a capella group, Aftershock; plus 50 members of the Chorus perform from the Getty Center. Additional performances and celebrity appearances will be announced in the coming weeks.

GMCLA continues its tradition of honoring a leader from the LGBTQ community as it bestows its annual Voice Award to Dr. Jerry Abraham. Dr. Abraham is a nationally-recognized leader for his crusade to provide COVID-19 testing and vaccines to communities of color in South Central Los Angeles.

The gala is supported by a $50,000 Challenge Grant from Carol and Richard Weaver with additional sponsorship from Morgan Stanley. All funds raised will support GMCLA’s reopening season and its return to the Alive Music Project – GMCLA’s highly regarded high school music program.

The Chorus just completed its 42nd season with three virtual concerts and several special events. The virtual season was enormously successful and reached thousands of GMCLA patrons and new fans from around the globe. In June members of the Chorus performed from the Getty Center for the ABC-7 LA Pride special (pictured above), and additional GMCLA performances from the Getty will be unveiled at the August Gala.

Streaming live on August 14 (or viewing until the end of August) is available for a donation of $75 or more per household; Sponor packages with on-air credit and a home-delivery of wine and goodies are $250; and limited number of opportunities to attend the live taping in Toluca Lake are available, including a reception with Carson Kressley, the GMCLA members and leadership, and Dr. Abraham at $500 per seat. Sign up to stream and get all information at GMCLA.

Carson Kressley
Emmy-Award winning TV personality, style expert, fashion designer, interior designer and New York Times best-selling author Carson Kressley took a leap into television when, in 2003, he became a breakout star as the fashion savant on Bravo’s Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, which won a primetime Emmy and gained a worldwide following for Carson which continues to this day. Carson revolutionized America’s personal fashion sense of style as he filmed OWN Network’s Carson- Nation. During this celebrated and entertaining show, Carson travelled to small towns throughout the U.S. transforming lives -one person at a time- with his signature style, humor, and heart. He also hosted multiple TV shows, including Lifetime’s How to Look Good Naked, ABC’s True Beauty, and competed on several reality competitions shows such as the 13th season of Dancing With The Stars where he was a fan favorite. A strong supporter of many philanthropic causes, Kressley uses his celebrity to advance different concerns such as The Trevor Project, The Human Rights Campaign, AIDS WALK, and the Al D. Rodriguez Liver Foundation. Kressley is also a trustee on the board of The True Colors Fund.

Dr. Jerry Abraham
Dr. Abraham and his team have now vaccinated over 250,000 people in South Los Angeles. He serves as the Director of the KEDREN Vaccines Program, which is committed to vaccinating a high volume of patients against COVID-19, as equitably, fairly, justly distributed and administered, and with accurate and timely reporting back to the various jurisdictions and authorities including the California Department of Public Health CDPH.  Dr. Abraham is a Harvard-Emory-University of Texas-USC trained Family & Community Medicine Physician, Global Injury Epidemiologist, and Medical Quality Specialist, caring for patients in South Los Angeles at KEDREN HEALTH, a Historically Black Institution, which includes an Acute Psychiatric Hospital with an outpatient Mental Health outfit with field-based work, and a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) Patient Centered Medical Home PCMH Primary Care Clinics.

Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles (GMCLA)
Founded in 1979 during the emergence of the Gay Rights movement, GMCLA has spread its message of love and acceptance with concerts across the globe, and has raised its collective voice in the struggle for equality, social justice, the AIDS crisis, the fight for marriage equality, and for all those seeking to find their own voice.  GMCLA’s free ticket program has provided access to concerts for thousands of low-income families over the decades, and research-based education programs have served over 70,000 young people throughout the Los Angeles region. In 2019 GMCLA performed at Carnegie Hall, The Hollywood Bowl (with Hugh Jackman), and in February 2020 GMCLA’s performance on the Film Independent Spirit Awards was viewed more than 7 million times.

During the pandemic GMCLA presented a full virtual season of concerts and special events, as well as school programs, that reached thousands of longtime and new fans from almost every corner of the globe – from Los Angeles to Ireland, Brazil, and New Zealand GMCLA’s streaming concerts were incredibly well received. Critics have proclaimed the Chorus “inspired,” “expressive, innovative, and utterly moving,” and hailed GMCLA for presenting “meaningful entertainment.” Ernest H. Harrison, is Music Director & Conductor, and Lou Spisto, a former GMCLA board member, is Executive Director & Producer.  For more go to GMCLA’s Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube page.

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