“Joining the Twin City Gay Men’s Chorus was a life-changing decision on my part…
“I don’t have a very elaborate story as to why I initially joined the chorus, but the reasons I stay a part of such an interesting group of men is so important to my life that I’m not sure what I would do otherwise.
“On New Year’s Eve of 2011, I drove up from Tennessee to start my life over here in Minnesota. Having studied music for several years, I knew I wanted to join a chorus of some sort. So, after a few weeks of research, I decided that the week I moved up that I would audition, and am very thankful that I got in… so, originally, I joined the TCGMC because I needed to have some sort of music in my life.
“But during the first rehearsal, I felt something that I hadn’t felt before. At the beginning of rehearsal to welcome all us newbies, the chorus stood and sang “Walk Hand In Hand,” the chorus’ signature song. The entire time they were singing, I felt like they were singing directly to me. To ME, some strange person they had never seen before. They sang as though they cared… as though they knew my story and knew that I needed a sanctuary to relax and be myself within. Over the course of several months, I gained several friends in the chorus, and they took me under their wings and showed me that, even 1000 miles from my hometown, I had a home here in the Twin Cities.
“Aside from the guys themselves, the music also has had a last effect on me. The songs that Stan and Ben have picked for the chorus to sing really keep me going on my rough days. These pieces provide a way that I can cope with manic depression, anxiety, and loneliness, things that I have been struggling with for several years. Songs like “The Prodigal,” “Love Lives On,” “I Sing Out,” and many others have become songs that, when I’m feeling lost and unimportant, make me feel like I belong to something greater than myself. It’s true that “burdens feel much lighter when I sing out… when we sing out.”
“It is this truly powerful combination of wonderful people, beautiful music, awe-inspiring text, the direction in which I’m guiding my life, and the understanding of where my life has been that makes the TCGMC such an integral part of my life.”
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