Music notes: GALA Choruses makes Pittsburgh its new home

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A national arts support organization has relocated to Pittsburgh. GALA Choruses, the Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses, has moved from Washington, D.C., to the North Side.

"We looked at the trade-off between the loss of some convenience vs. the cost of not just rental space, but personnel, and the trade-off was overwhelming," said Robin Godfrey, general manager and former manager of the Renaissance City Choirs. "We cut our personnel and space costs in half by moving here."

GALA Choruses is in its 25th year and has 120 member choruses globally, representing 7,000 singers. In addition to providing training and support to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender choirs and their leaders, GALA Choruses hosts a quadrennial festival. Godfrey expects around 6,000 delegates and 150 choirs to convene in Miami in July 2008 at the Carnival Center.

As for the field in general: "There had been enormous growth," she said. "The men's choirs grew first, then the women's, then mixed choirs. Now the growth is in youth choirs."

Double duty

The Renaissance City Choirs, Pittsburgh's GLBT chorus, has named conductor Andres Cladera, currently artistic director of its women's choir, to be interim director of the men's choir. The organization also hired Vicki Green as managing director. She succeeds Robin Godfrey, now general manager of GALA Choruses.

Prestigious award for CMU

The Carnegie Mellon University School of Music recently received a coveted French Diapason d'or for an album of works by composer George Crumb. The recording contained a special orchestrated version of Crumb's seminal work for amplified string quartet, "Black Angels," arranged by Juan Pablo Izquierdo. Izquierdo conducted the CMU Philharmonic and Cuarteto Latinoamericano.

Also on the disc is "Makrokosmos III," with performances by faculty members such as pianists Luz Manriquez and Walter Morales.


Post-Gazette classical music critic Andrew Druckenbrod can be reached at adruckenbrod@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1750. He blogs at post-gazette.com/music/classicalmusings .


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