Nashville in Harmony plans new season; holds auditions

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Nashville in Harmony, the city’s only musical organization for GLBT persons and friends, begins its 2006-2007 season in August.

The 45-voice mixed SATB chorus culminated its second season with a performance July 9 at the historic Ryman Auditorium by singing their signature arrangement of Garth Brooks’ “We Shall Be Free” as an opener for the Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus.

Highlights for the upcoming season include performances at the Renaissance Center and The Cheekwood Museum, as well as a holiday concert, “Make the Yuletide Gay,” at the First Unitarian Universalist Church on December 5.

The chorus performs a wide variety of repertoire including world music, a cappella anthems, familiar holiday favorites, as well as pop tunes. Programming this season features “The River of Dreams” by Billy Joel, “Vocal Dance III” by Greg Jasperse, and a vocal jazz arrangement of “The Bell Carol,” as well as the song that will be the theme for the Fall 2006 season, “Change the World” by Eric Clapton.

Nashville in Harmony is under the direction of Don Schlosser, former music producer and choral clinician for a Nashville-based music publisher. “We are definitely poised for our best season yet,” Schlosser said, “We have a great group of singers and we are all genuinely excited about what we’re doing.”

Roslyn Bell, incoming NiH board chair, notes that in addition to rehearsals and performances, the group will also be focusing this next season on achieving its mission: using music to build community and to create social change. “It is our mission that distinguishes us from other music groups in Nashville,” Bell said. “We exist to change the world with our voices.”

The group, which was begun in 2004 as a project of the First Unitarian Universalist Church, has doubled in size in its second season and has become financially independent through the leadership of outgoing board chair Rodger Murray.

Vocal interviews are scheduled for Tuesday evening, August 8, and Thursday evening, August 10. Anyone interested in interviewing to participate in the chorus is invited to visit www.nashvilleinharmony.org to schedule an interview. Interviews last approximately five minutes, require no preparation, and will include simple singing, pitch matching and sight-reading. Everyone is welcome to be part of Nashville In Harmony: men or women, gay or straight. There is also a “fifth section” of non-singers who work to support the chorus in many ways, such as publicity, planning receptions, fundraising and more.

Nashville in Harmony is an associate member of GALA Choruses, Inc., and is planning to sing at that organization’s annual convention in Miami in the fall of 2008.