Stockholm’s Gay choir was founded in 1982 by Raino Kirkma who, together with several friends, thought that it would be fun to sing together as an alternative to parties and going to clubs. From a modest start with 15 men who sang in unison, the choir has grown to nearly 70 singers who successfully tackle up to 7-part works for male voice choirs. Today, the choir is a multicultural organisation with members from many different parts of the world. The choir also has an octet that represents the choir and performs in smaller settings. During 1999-2007, the choir was under the direction of Karol Vieker, a university-educated choral conductor from the United States. After Karol, Jacob Mølgaard Laustsen was the choir’s conductor up until 2010. For the period of 2010 – 2013 Jerry Adbo led the choir. The current conductors are Magnus Bergman and Jerry Adbo who took over in Autumn 2015.
Our concerts have drawn an ever-growing audience. Our joint Christmas concerts with Sapphonia Kvinnokören (Sapphonia Women’s Choir, www.kvinnokoren.org) have sold out, despite double performances. In recent years, our spring concerts have included a number of well-known guest artists, including Mark Levengood, Petja Svensson and PomPeriPossaBand. For over 20 years, the choir has taken part in the ecumenical mass dedicated to love and tolerance in Stockholm Cathedral that concludes the Pride week in Stockholm. They have also collaborated with Ulf Lidman and his “Rainbow Masses” for a number of years.
The choir’s 20th anniversary in the spring of 2002 drew a great deal of media attention. This led to the choir increasingly performing on the radio and on TV. The Christmas concert in Tyska Kyrkan (The German Church) in 2004 was recorded live by the Swedish national radio and broadcast several times, including a nationwide broadcast on Christmas Eve.
Over the years, Stockholms Gay choir has won a number of awards, such as the Culture Award from Rosa Rummet (The Pink Room), the Arco Nordica award from the International Lesbian & Gay Cultural Network–Nordic, and the award for “Best Musical Performance” at a gay choir competition in Antwerp. Most recently, the choir was awarded the Lars Rading Cultural Award by Noah’s Ark and by the Red Cross for being “an appreciated and constant feature in different activities in the LGBT community and in making HIV positive and AIDS afflicted people visible, both in Sweden and abroad.”