Music brings people together and changes lives, and no one understands that more than the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, and the allies who support them.
Saturday night, Hollywood’s glitterati were out in full force at the 6th annual GMCLA Voice Awards gala to support the work they do and honor those who’ve gone above and beyond for LGBT rights.
From special guests like Lisa Vanderpump of “Housewives of Beverly Hills,” to singer Lance Bass, actor Alexandra Grey from “Transparent,” and host of the event Daniel Franzese, and others, the gala paid tribute to Human Rights Campaign board member, Gwen Baba (who was honored with the Community Leader Award), Logo TV network (with the Visionary Voice Award), and American musical theatre lyricist and composer, Stephen Schwartz (with the Vanguard Voice Award)
The Los Angeles Blade was on the red carpet to talk to celebs about funding cuts to the arts, what music education means to them, GMCLA programs that melt hearts, and even get a few of them to show off their vocal talents.
GMCLA has gained international praise for its artistic endeavors, unending service to the Los Angeles community, and continuing to encourage civil rights and acceptance through music.
Founded in 1979 during the emergence of the gay civil rights movement, GMCLA boasts over 250 singers, has released 15 CDs, commissioned more than 300 new works and arrangements, and members donate over 60,000 volunteer hours to keep musical programs and community partnerships alive and well.
The Gala was meant to raise money to maintain programs such as the “Alive Music Project” where GMCLA members share messages of anti-bullying and acceptance through music to students; or the “It Gets Better” national tour, where a dedicated ensemble of performers and educators travels to communities nationwide to produce a week of educational workshops, culminating in a moving musical theater performance.
The week highlights anti-bullying, tolerance and acceptance through community roundtable discussions, high school visits, “It Gets Better” videos, and creative exercises. Local choirs join the cast onstage for the final performance – “an exciting and funny story with moments of both pain and pathos, featuring poignant narratives of growing up gay,” according to the GMCLA website.