September 8, 2011 at 4:15 pm EDT | by David Placher
9-11 concerts kick off fall season

Pink Martini, a retro-fabulous combo featuring gay pianist Thomas Lauderdale, plays the Strathmore in December. (Photo courtesy Heinz Records)

The fall concert season gets off to a somber start with several 9-11 memorial concerts planned for this weekend.

A concert by the Festival Choir of the Lutheran Church of the Reformation under the direction of Thea Kano (who also conducts the Gay Men’s Chorus) and dedicated to the victims of 9-11 will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation, 212 East Capitol Street N.E. (across from the Folger Library). Admission is free but a free-will offering will be taken. The concert will feature the “Requiem of Paul Leavitt,” as well as John Tavener’s “Song for Athene.”

Metropolitan Community Church of Washington (474 Ridge Street, N.W.) also has a 9-11 memorial concert planned for Sunday at 3 titled “Faith in Love” featuring the church’s highly regarded gospel choir. Details are at MCC is the region’s largest mostly gay church and prides itself on inclusion.

And the World Doctors Orchestra plays a memorial concert Sunday at 7 at the Music Center at Strathmore in Bethesda as a benefit for Whitman-Walker Health. Conducted by Stefan Willich, Mahler’s “Resurrection” symphony, a Mozart violin concerto and Barber’s famous “Adagio for Strings” will be performed. Tickets range from $25-$75. Go to for details.

Switching gears drastically, gay-friendly Taylor Dayne will headline the 15th annual Delaware Pride Festival at Rehoboth Beach on Sept. 17. The festival runs 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Tickets are $5 in advance and $7 day of event. Dayne is a multi-million-selling performer with several top-10 Billboard pop hits to her credit.

Out singer/songwriter Melissa Ferrick will perform at the Birchmere Music Hall (3701 Mt. Vernon Ave) in Alexandria, Va., on Sept. 24 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $25 and are going fast. Some of her lyrics deal with lesbian themes. Ferrick’s album “Everything I Need” was named 1999 Album of the Year by the Gay and Lesbian American Music Association.

The multi-talented singer and actress Audra McDonald is scheduled to perform at the Kennedy Center on Oct. 4 at 8 p.m. Tickets range from $25 to $85. She has earned two Grammy Awards and an unprecedented four Tony Awards. She also stars in the ABC television drama “Private Practice” as Dr. Naomi Bennett.

Openly gay country singer Chely Wright will perform at the Birchmere Music Hall Oct. 20 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25. Wright came out in 2010.

Grammy Award-winning LGBT rights supporter Cyndi Lauper plays the 9:30 club on Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $45. Lauper has released 11 albums and about 40 singles, and as of 2008 had sold more than 30 million records worldwide. Lauper’s sister, Ellen, is a lesbian and Lauper considers her a role model.

American Grammy Award-winning singer, guitarist, poet and songwriter, Ani DiFranco, will perform at Ram’s Head Live in downtown Baltimore on Oct. 22 at 8. Tickets are $40.

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington (GMCW) will perform “Home Cooked Cabaret” on Nov. 12 at 6:30 p.m. at the Town Danceboutique. Tickets range from $75-$100 and include both show and dinner. GMCW is one of the oldest LGBT choral organizations in the United States and has 225 singing members.

Out songwriter and singer Catie Curtis will perform at Wolf Trap (1645 Trap Rd.) in Vienna, Va., on Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $22 each.

Tori Amos will perform on Dec. 5 at DAR Constitution Hall starting at 8 p.m. Tickets start at $45. As of 2005, Amos had sold 12 million albums worldwide.

Pink Martini plays the Music Center at Strathmore (5301 Tuckerman Ln. N.) in Bethesda, Md., on Dec. 12 at 8. Tickets start at $55. This 13-member band, often titled, “little orchestra” draws its inspiration from music from all over the world, including pop, classical and jazz. Pianist Thomas Lauderdale is gay.



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