Kevin Robison joined the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus in 2007 as its first full-time artistic director. He has announced that he will be stepping down from the position after their upcoming concert.
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The organization, which was founded in 1981, expanded under Robison’s leadership. In 2013, the Atlanta Women’s Chorus was created and both the Gay Men’s and Women’s Choruses fell under the umbrella of Voices of Note. Robison acknowledges that the transition has unfolded “beautifully,” but admits to having reservations at the time.
“I wanted to do it right. You got one shot at expanding and developing another branch of your organization,” he told City Lights host Lois Reitzes, “and I knew that I was not the director for the Women’s Chorus.”
Melissa Arasi was brought on to lead the Women’s Chorus.
The Gay Men’s Chorus has completed a search for an interim artistic director, though they have yet to announce their choice.
“The expectations are very high for choral directors in this city. Robert Shaw set the standard,” Robison says. “After 10 years, you start to think about [those expectations] differently and start to think about other opportunities.”
“Choral theatre is the thing that I’m most proud of,” he says.
Robison will conduct one final concert with the Atlanta Gay Men’s Chorus. It will be their annual holiday program, titled “Bells, Babs & Beyond,” Dec. 8 and 9 at the Cathedral of St. Philip.