For two evenings only, June 15 and 16, San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (SFGMC) presents Unplugged! Featuring 250 singers, SFGMC entertains under the baton of Dr. Tim Seelig, with special vocal arrangements from Deke Sharon, heralded as “the father of contemporary a cappella.”
“Deke Sharon, music director of NBC’s The Sing-Off is right at home with the men of the Chorus, rehearsing with us in his home town of San Francisco, and has arranged many of the pieces you’ll enjoy at the concerts,” said SFGMC artistic director and conductor, Dr. Tim Seelig.
Joining the Chorus as special guest on the program is beatboxer Kid Beyond who is proud to be reuniting at these concerts with Deke Sharon, with whom he co-founded the groundbreaking a cappella band The House Jacks in the early 90's. Kid Beyond is an electro-rock singer, songwriter, and producer, whose music crams Buddhist teachings and panmythic archetypes into pop song forms. His pioneering live-looping work -- multi-tracking his singing and beatboxing onstage to create his own live backing tracks -- has riveted hundreds of thousands of viewers around the world.
“Under Tim's stellar leadership, the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus has become one of the premier community choirs in the nation, and it's an honor to be working with them,” added Deke Sharon.
In this seriously fun pair of concerts, SFGMC performs a cappella versions of favorites from Broadway to the Beatles, as well as contemporary pop classics ranging from “True Colors” made famous by Cyndi Lauper to “Good Life” from the American rock band, One Republic.
In addition, the Chorus continues its presentation of world premieres including "Give 'Em Hope", composed by Joseph Martin and set to words of Harvey Milk in anticipation of the major work SFGMC is commissioning in 2013 commemorating the 35th anniversary of Milk’s 11 months in office.
“This is the first time that the Chorus will be performing at what music lovers affectionately call ‘Cal Pres.’ The acoustics are ideal and what better way to kick-off LGBT Pride in San Francisco,” shared SFGMC Executive Director Teddy Witherington. “The SFGMC’s Unplugged concerts are official SF LGBT Pride events and together with the Frameline Film Festival, mark the start of the city’s celebrations in earnest.”
“We promise you a magnificently varied assortment of entertainment with showmanship that is the hallmark of the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus experience,” concluded Seelig.
About Deke Sharon:
Born in San Francisco, California, Deke Sharon has been performing professionally since the age of 8, and as a child shared the stage in operas with the likes of Pavarotti and toured North America. Heralded as “The Father of Contemporary A Cappella,” he is responsible for the current sound of modern a cappella, having created the dense vocal-instrumental sound in college, subsequently spreading it around the world.
As the founder, director, and arranger for the House Jacks, the original “Rock Band Without Instruments,” with seven albums, and dozens of international tours from the House of Blues to Carnegie Hall. Deke has shared the stage with countless music legends, including Ray Charles, James Brown, Crosby Stills and Nash, Run DMC, The Temptations, LL Cool J, and the Four Tops, and performed for luminaries including President Bill Clinton.
He is also a cappella’s most prolific arranger, having arranged over 2,000 songs, with many of them in print worldwide with Hal Leonard/Contemporary A Cappella Publishing. He has produced dozens of award winning a cappella albums, created a cappella groups for Disneyland and Disneyworld, and frequently tours the world teaching a variety of topics to students and professional singers. He is producer of NBC’s The Sing-Off as well as the show’s music director.
About Kid Beyond:
Beatboxer and founding member of the House Jacks with Deke Sharon, Kid Beyond has shared the stage with such artists as Keane, Imogen Heap, Lupe Fiasco, Spearhead, Amon Tobin, and many more. His voice and music have appeared on TV shows such as Gossip Girl, Life, Kyle XY, and VH1's Supergroup; films such as Mission Impossible III; and games such as The Sims, NBA Live, Guitar Hero, and Rock Band.
His animated electro-opera, Kid Beyond and the Intergalactic Love Army, will be released next year. Visit kidbeyond.com for more info.
About San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus:
Founded in 1978 as the first Chorus to have the word “Gay” in its name, San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus strives to inspire its audience, members and the world through high-quality choral experiences. In addition to a home season of three annual subscription productions in San Francisco, the Chorus performs at public and private venues throughout the Bay Area including annual hospice caroling and performances for bay area communities where concert proceeds directly benefit local non-profits. Under the current leadership of artistic director and conductor Dr. Tim Seelig, the chorus has nearly doubled to its current size of 275 singers and has increased the number of concerts in its 2011-12 concert season. More history of the SFGMC.
Unplugged with the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus
Friday, June 15, 8pm
Saturday, June 16, 8pm
Calvary Presbyterian Church
2515 Fillmore Street, SF (at Jackson)
San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus
Dr. Tim Seelig, artistic director and conductor
Deke Sharon, singer
Kid Beyond, vocal percussion/beatbox
Music from Broadway to the Beatles with vocal arrangements by Deke Sharon, vocal producer of The Sing-Off; “Give 'Em Hope", composed by Joseph Martin (World Premiere), text from Harvey Milk; arrangements of “True Colors” made famous by Cyndi Lauper, “Good Life” from the American rock band, One Republic, and more.
(students/seniors/unwaged $10 by phone)
Purchase tickets at sfgmc.org or call the SFGMC Box Office Tuesday through Friday 10a-3p at (415) 865-2787.
These concerts are enthusiastically supported by SFGMC sponsors, with special thanks to:
Presenting Sponsors: Ketel One Vodka; Bulleit Bourbon
Supporting Sponsors: Miller64; United Airlines; San Francisco Bay Times; Hotel Rex; Barefoot Wine
Additional support from: Grants for the Arts/Hotel Tax Fund; The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation