The Providence Gay Men’s Chorus :: Out on the Bay
The Providence Gay Men’s Chorus pulled out all the stops with their latest show, Out on the Bay. The performances on June 7, 9, and 10 at Beneficent Church were held to coincide with the state’s Gay Pride celebration.
The show featured songs with nautical themes, such as "We Sail the Ocean Blue" from Gilbert and Sullivan’s "H.M.S. Pinafore;" "I’d Rather Be Sailing" from "A New Brain;" "A Drunken Sailor," "Fire Down Below," "A-Roving," and the disco classic, "Rock the Boat."
The chorus, under the direction of Teresa Coffman, showcased their versatility and talent.
Classic 70s rock songs were given a fresh interpretation.
Styx’s "Come Sail Away" featured a passionate lead vocal by Robert Emmons, and Kansas’ Carry On, Wayward Son was highly entertaining.
The individual performances were also stellar.
Matt Balsamo gave a flawless version of Billy Joel’s "The Downeaster ’Alexa’."
Mark Lima’s rendition of the 1950s ballad "Ebb Tide" was note-perfect and vibrant. Karl Doerflinger and David Lombardi were utterly charming with their take on "Beyond the Sea," which was a popular Bobby Darin song.
The chorus gave a performance of the poignant "In My Life," written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney.
Other songs included "Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini." Greg Wright was the standout here, frolicking in yellow polka-dot underwear. The audience was roaring with laughter at his antics. This comic interlude has been a regular feature of PGMC shows and brings a lot of vitality to the performances.
This year’s show featured pianist Kim Kuda, Percussionist Peter Hebda, and Bassist Rick Sadek - all of whom provided excellent accompaniment.
The show concluded with the energetic "Out on the Bay," which was an affectionate tribute to the special qualities of the Ocean State. The spirit of joy in the performance was infectious.
The PGMC is celebrating their 16th year. In 2008, the chorus performed at the International GALA Festival in Miami. Next month, they plan to perform alongside 150 other GLBT choruses from around the world in Denver, Colorado for GALA Festival 2012.
For more information about the Providence Gay Men’s Chorus, go to www.provgmc.org.