Latter-day Saint Life

San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus Performs with Mormon Tabernacle Choir


"The purpose of music is to unite people," said Mormon Tabernacle Choir President Ron Jarrett. "Music affects people in many ways. This is a great opportunity to bring two cultures, if you will, to the center of things and to build bridges, to make friends, and to make an enjoyable experience for everyone through music."

When Dr. Timothy Seelig, the artistic director of the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus, first heard his organization was being invited to perform with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, he guessed it was a prank.

"Yeah, when pigs fly," thought the native Texan.

But he soon learned the invite was legitimate — and he was quick to accept. The veteran choral leader knows music is often called a universal language, but it is also a global unifier. It can bring people together who may seem at odds.

Lead image by Kristen Murphy, Deseret News. Karen Heath Penman, who has a transgender son, hugs a member of the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus after soundcheck with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, Calif., on Monday, June 25, 2018.
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