Flying House Productions Programs
The concert season includes five major productions (3 SMC; 2 SWC), a free children’s concert, a full calendar of appearances by our two small ensembles (Captain Smartypants and Sensible Shoes), and extensive outreach activities. Volunteers are central to our work, with close to 700 people donating thousands of hours to our work and mission annually, with our dedicated volunteer singing members performing an average of 38 shows collectively each year. Love of choral singing brings us together, but the vision of equality expressed in our mission statement drives our passion. Rather than dwelling on past hurts and injustices, we elect to focus on ways in which hearts can be touched, and with luck, minds changed. We represent “grassroots social change” at the very core.
This was recently seen as the combined Choruses partnered with Washington United for Marriage and performed five free concerts leading up to the marriage equality vote in November 2012. These performances were took place along the I-5 corridor from Bellingham to Olympia
As proud Seattle residents, we are deeply committed to furthering Seattle’s reputation as one of America’s most arts-friendly cities. Our singers’ outstanding level of professionalism is complemented by the many local and national collaborators with whom we share our stage. Some of the iconic guest artists with whom we have worked include Debbie Reynolds, Kristen Chenoweth, Harvey Fierstein, Megan Mullaly, and Frederica von Stade, as well as respected arts groups like Spectrum Dance Theatre, and folk troupe Balladores de Bronce.
Special ongoing programs include our annual free Children’s Concert; our free Youth Ticket Program (supporting LGBTQ youth, their friends and families); and outreach appearances/tours to communities throughout the Puget Sound area and beyond, who benefit from our special messaging of hope and equality. We regularly perform as part of Seattle-wide programs such as the Westlake tree-lighting Ceremony, the Seattle lunchtime performance series, and various sporting events, and our December shows at Benaroya Hall ring in the joy of the holidays for thousands of concertgoers each year.
Reaching into diverse communities with the universal appeal and power of music, our activities provide a forum that encourages intimacy, celebration, and a way of creating a memorable new history for Seattle.
Recent Successes and Current Challenges
Sing Out was presented in the June of 2012 by Seattle Men’s Chorus. More than half of the concert programming was determined by a vote of our patrons through an online survey. Additionally, a community-wide talent search, “Chorus Idol,” was undertaken in the spring of 2012. Applicants submitted YouTube videos of themselves singing, twenty semi-finalists had the opportunity to compete in a live performance, and finally, two finalists performed live at each of the two concerts at McCaw Hall. Audiences then chose a winner via text-message and online, choosing a winner who then got to sing a solo with the 200 voices of Seattle Men’s Chorus backing them up. Both were highly successful, getting rave reviews from audience members and generating positive press for Flying House Productions.
Challenges & Needs
We are excited to begin increasing our outreach education efforts by connecting with school districts to address the lack of choral music exposure and education in schools; as well as the need to address anti-bullying. This is an area where we have the potential for immense growth. Our goals are to help supplement the music education in the schools as well as to provide support for LGBT youth and anti-bullying efforts.
However, with the growing need in our schools and with our LGBT youth, we need to look at expanding our outreach, and to do so, we need to create new funding opportunities and partnerships.