Jesus would have been proud.
Earlier this year, Joseph P Nadeau, pictured, made headlines when he refused to sign a statement agreeing with the Catholic Church’s stance that homosexuality is classified as a “disorder.” Until just a few months ago, Nadeau was the longtime music director at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Kansas City, Mo. And for the past eight years, he’s conducted the local gay choral group The Heartland Men’s Chorus.
A change in leadership at the Archdiocese of Kansas City prompted a re-examination of Nadeau’s post. And when Nadeau refused to sign the church’s “gay is a disorder” agreement which also stipulated that Nadeau would be celibate his contract with St. Agnes was not renewed.
While it was disgraceful that Nadeau lost his job and was subject to open discrimination, the response from the St. Agnes parishioners and the men in his chorus was awesome. During Nadeau’s final service as music director, the chorus stood and sang “God Help the Outcast” with Nadeau singing the solo in the piece. The congregation rose and applauded for more than five minutes.
On Sunday, the Turtle Creek Chorale joins forces with Nadeau and The Heartland’s Men’s Chorus for a concert titled “Friends: Celebrating the Heart and the Heartland.” The concert also pays tribute to departed “friends” as TCC commemorates the 15th Anniversary of the world premiere the Chorale’s musical work “When We No Longer Touch,” which was the basis of the Emmy-winning PBS documentary “After Goodbye: An AIDS Story.”
Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St. Oct. 8 at 8 p.m. $15-$38. 214- 526-3214.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, October 6, 2006.