MacMillan Singers with the Concreamus Chamber Choir and instrumental ensemble perform movements from Craig Hella Johnson’s evocative oratorio Considering Matthew Shepard.
Program (PDF) includes program movements and text
$30 adult, $20 senior, $10 student
U of T students are admitted free with a valid TCard, space permitting.
Grace Church on-the-Hill, 300 Lonsdale Road, Toronto
Considering Matthew Shepard tells the story of Matthew Shepard who, in 1998 in Laramie, Wyoming, was brutally attacked and left to die because he was gay. In movement 9, titled "A Protestor", hateful and hurtful slurs toward Matthew Shepard and the 2SLGBTQ+ community are sung. These words were shouted and displayed on posterboards by protestors at Shepard's funeral. These words are difficult for the choir to sing. We know they may also be difficult for the audience to hear. Composer Dr. Craig Hella Johnson included this movement in the work as he feels strongly that it is an important part of the full story.
Movement 9 is three minutes in length. Members of the choir and the audience who cannot or do not wish to engage in the movement will be able to leave the performance space prior to it. Assistance will be available to ensure those who leave can return after it is complete.
2023 is the 25th anniversary of Matthew Shepard’s brutal murder.
Discrimination and violence are difficult to witness and process. They typically surface many emotions including grief, guilt, shame, sadness, and anger. We encourage you to connect with supports available to you, should you need them, as you metabolize this performance.
Resources are available to you should you need them. Mental health supports available to U of T community members and to others are listed here. U of T students can access 24/7 counselling services here.
U of T’s Sexual and Gender Diversity Office provides education, programming, resources, and advocacy on sexual and gender diversity for students, faculty, librarians, and staff. It develops partnerships to build supportive learning and working communities at the University. The Office is available during regular business hours on weekdays to members of the University community.
The 519 services local 2SLGBTQ+ community members, offering a range of services including counselling, queer parenting resources, coming out groups, trans programming, and senior’s support.
The Matthew Shepard Foundation’s mission is to amplify the story of Matthew Shepard to inspire individuals, organizations and communities to embrace the dignity and equality of all people. Their work is an extension of Matt’s passion to foster a more caring and just world. They share his story and embody his vigor for civil rights to change the hearts and minds of others to accept everyone as they are. To learn more or to contribute, please visit their website.