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Dessoff Choirs: Considering Matthew Shepard (New York Premiere)

November 6, 2021 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Purchase tickets HERE!

15% discount offered to Society Members! Contact Membership Coordinator Maggie Determann for the discount code: mdetermann@nysec.org

The Dessoff Choirs is proud to present the New York premiere of Craig Hella Johnson’s three-part fusion oratorio, Considering Matthew Shepard. Grappling with the brutal 1998 murder of a young gay man who has become an American icon and a symbol for hope and empowerment, this moving work weaves together musical styles that include country and western, gospel, and chant with lyrics taken from Matt Shepard’s personal journal, writings from his parents, newspaper reports, and poetic texts.

Joined by the Dessoff Orchestra, guest soloists, and the Brooklyn College Conservatory Singers, Dessoff will give a lightly staged performance under the baton of Music Director Malcolm J. Merriweather and co-directed by WQXR’s Elliott Forrest (Peabody-winning broadcaster, producer, and director) and Rod Caspers.

This performance is dedicated to the memory of longtime Dessoff member Erika “E” Rohrbach.


Considering Matthew Shepard (2016) (New York Premiere) – Craig Hella Johnson (b. 1962)


Matthew Cahill as Matthew Shepard
Tami Petty, soprano
Markel Reed, baritone

A note to our community regarding COVID-19

We are so excited to be able to welcome our audience back to in-person performances! The safety of our community is our number one priority and we have therefore implemented the following COVID-19 related safety protocols for all 21-22 Dessoff performances:

-Proof of vaccination is required for entry and will be confirmed at the door of the venue upon arrival, so please remember to bring your vaccination card or NY State Excelsior Pass.

-Temperatures will be checked for each audience member at the entry of the venue. Any audience member with a temperature higher than 100.1 will not be admitted.

-Masks are required for the entire duration of all Dessoff events for all members of the audience. Performers will not be masked.

-There will be no day-of in-person ticket sales. All tickets need to be purchased online, in advance of performance. Tickets will be available for purchase online until one hour before curtain.

There are absolutely NO exceptions to any of these rules.


November 6, 2021
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm