Diverse City Youth Chorus- Cincinnati
Young people aged 13- 22 are invited to sing with Cincinnati’s only performing arts organization for LGBTIQ and straight youth. Rehearsals are Saturday mornings at 10 am – 1 pm at St. John’s Unitarian Universalist Church, 320 Resor Ave. Cincinnati OH 45220
Founder and Artistic Director of the Diverse City Youth Chorus is Lindsey Deaton, former Contemporary Music Director at the Cathedral St. Peter in Chains. She directed music at the Cathedral’s weekly contemporary Masses for the last decade.
The Diverse City Youth Chorus encourages and fosters artistic expression, personal development, and leadership in lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer/questioning and allied youth and presents performances that provide an opportunity and space for young people, however they identify, to say “this is a place where I am accepted for who I am and everything that I bring.”
Creating and performing new works of spoken word, drama, song, movement and poetry all based on their lives, Diverse City Youth Chorus performs engagement programs at non-traditional venues such as community agency events, hospitals, universities, schools, corporate diversity events and union halls, in addition to main-stage performances.
“Currently in the SW Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky region there is no organization providing performing arts opportunities for LGBTQ identifying young people and their straight friends”, says Ms. Deaton.
Findings from the GLSEN 2011 National School Climate Survey demonstrate that Ohio schools were not safe for most lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) secondary school students. “The vast majority of LGBT students in Ohio regularly heard homophobic remarks, sexist remarks, and negative re- marks about gender expression. Most LGBT students in Ohio had been victimized at school. In addition, many LGBT students in Ohio did not have access to important school resources, such as having Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) or similar student clubs, and were not protected by comprehensive anti-bullying/harassment school policies.”
Ms. Deaton says, “As good-will ambassadors, these young people will grow and develop musically and know they have a safe place to offer the best versions of themselves. These young agents of change will then create a ripple effect in our community, changing minds, lives and attitudes in their performances, workshops and curriculum throughout the region.”