Chorale names interim director

Trey Jacobs

The Turtle Creek Chorale has a new conductor — for now.

Trey Jacobs, who until recently was an assistant professor of choral activities at Eastern Michigan University and who currently lives in Mobile, Ala., with his partner, has been tapped to serve as conductor of the TCC for its upcoming season.

The season, which was planned by Dr. Jonathan Palant before his sudden departure last month as artistic director of the TCC, begins on Oct. 23, but for the past month or so, no one person has led the music portion of the troupe. Jacobs fills that duty, effective immediately, and will perform as the interim conductor during the 2011-12 season, according to Dawson Taylor, chairman of the chorale board.

The chorale announced in July that it would immediately begin a nationwide search for a new artistic director, a process that is expected to take six months or more.

Interestingly, both Jacobs and Palant are veterans of Michigan State University: Jacobs recently completed his doctoral work there, and Palant has degrees from there as well as the University of Michigan and Temple University.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Gay Dallas couple’s Skype wedding goes viral

Mark Reed, left, and Dante Walkup

We spoke briefly this afternoon with Mark Reed, before he had to hang up because of a conference call with producers from CNN, which is set to interview Reed and his husband, Dante Walkup, on Tuesday.

Our story last week about Reed and Walkup’s Skype wedding has gone viral, getting picked up by media outlets from The Washington Post to Time magazine.

Reed said CNN’s interview — itself conducted via Skype — will air at 12:20 p.m. Tuesday Dallas time.

“It’s gotten wild,” Reed said. “I really didn’t think it would go this far. It’s good because the more times you can put real faces on stories about couples who are in love, it changes hearts and minds. It’s exciting.”

Despite all the national attention, one media outlet that hasn’t picked up the story is The Dallas Morning News, which is also refusing to publish their wedding announcement, Reed noted. (More on this later.)

Reed and Walkup attended a symposium on e-marriage this weekend at Michigan State University’s School of Law, where experts are pushing for state statutes to bolster the legality of e-marriage.

“The law school’s trying to find one state to introduce legislation and get it passed, and they feel like Vermont would be the best choice,” Reed said, adding that openly gay Vermont State Rep. Bill Lippert was on hand for the symposium. “He came to the symposium skeptical, but once he heard our story, it really touched him and he got really excited about it.”

—  John Wright