• By: Myka Burke

Tone Cluster Presents Pop Goes the Choir

Ottawa Life's Myka Burke chats with Tone Cluster’s Artistic Director Kurt Ala-Kantti.

Local LGTBQ choir Tone Cluster – Quite a Queer Choir, known for their sonic versatility, is presenting a pop-themed pre-Christmas season concert on Saturday November 26, 2016 at the Centre Town United Church (507 Bank Street) at 7:30pm. This concert is their first local concert since returning from their performance at the 9th Gala Choruses Queer Festival in Denver, Colorado. Their smash hit performance to the thousands of members in attendance at the festival was also broadcast live via the Gala Choruses website.

For this upbeat and fun undertaking in their 23rd season, Tone Cluster’s Pop Goes the Choir concert will be including pop tunes from several decades and will feature Ottawa’s talented Funk, R&B, Pop and Soul singer Iyona Ede, led by Tone Cluster’s Artistic Director Kurt Ala-Kantti with pianist Vincent Mar on piano. Mike Essoudry will be on drums, Kathy Armstrong (from the Baobab Drum Dancing Community) will be on African drums, Gregory Weeks will be on cello and Kevin James on violin.

Tone Cluster’s Artistic Director Kurt Ala-Kantti

With a coy wink to their signature diversity, the programme includes some entertaining compositions like “Baba Yetu”, the first-ever Grammy-winning computer game theme song from Civilisation IV by Christopher Tin, Aerosmith’s “Dream On” and other popular tunes by Pentatonix, Imagine Dragons, Rankin Family, American Authors, Carly Simon, and Michael Rivard. The highlight will likely be the late Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” where the audience will be asked to join in.

The community-minded choir will host a reception afterwards featuring home-made food and there will be a raffle draw for delicious baskets of wine and chocolate. A safety pin in support of diversity in Canada and the US will also be available for purchase. The idea for the safety pin started in the UK after Brexit. People started wearing safety pins to signal their support for refugees and immigrants. The idea being that the safety pin was a non-verbal way to signal that vulnerable groups have a safe place and a friend in the safety pin-wearing person. The idea has caught on in North America and it speaks to the support being offered to and within marginalized groups since the US election. People are posting a photo of their #SafetyPin and declaring themselves safe places.

What: Pop Goes The Choir Concert by Tone Cluster – Quite a Queer Choir
Where: 507 Bank Street, Ottawa
When: Saturday, November 26th, 2016
Info: tonecluster.ca