1. Chuck Mielke says

    @ Martin Luther Queensky. Your comment suggests that you don’t sing with a GLBT chorus. In a moment like that in the clip, it can be VERY difficult to refrain from emotion and control your voice. It helps to put on a “goofy expression.” As for the audience understanding, the lyrics may well have been printed, in Russian, in the concert program or, as in an opera, projected where the audience could see and sing along.

  2. Danny says

    “Barry Manilow” – you show the emotional depth of a puddle of water. If you were being beaten to death, you’d likely wonder why others would look at you and say “this is so boring.’ If you want vapid, you’re backing up the wrong blog.

  3. Marc says

    Thanks for posting this. It’s very chilling to see the terrifying state of affairs in Russia now and comparing that to 14 years ago when this anthem of triumph and peace was sung in that very country.
    How sad to know how bad things have gotten.
    But we SHALL overcome… again.
    The world’s eyes are on Russia and the world’s hearts are on their LGBT citizens. We won’t let you down.

  4. adam says

    How is a chorus going to resonate with young people? Choruses don’t resonate with young people. We need pop music acts, not choruses. Oh, there are no openly gay pop music acts of sufficient commercial weight in America owing to the homophobia of the industry….

  5. says

    Hi Friends:
    I’m the editor of this We Shall Overcome video (the little blond dude in the front row behind the piano players in 1999).

    @ SIMON: Thank you for remembering “glasnost”! I tried to squeeze that into the movie, but there was just too much going on. It’s loosely translated as “governance conducted in the open,” which really belongs to Gorbachev’s successor Boris Yeltsin, the first democratically-elected president in Russian history. It was Yeltsin’s support that enabled GMCLA to sing in Russia. Before we left, we sang for Bill Clinton, the first time a sitting US President attended a gay event!

    @ADAM: Please don’t judge today’s chorus by these images from 1999. Our chorus today resonates HUGELY with young audiences. Our shows sell out giant theaters, and getting into GMCLA is a fierce competition. GLEE changed everything! Now, guys don’t join to sing Mozart, they want to sing pop tunes and put on a _show_. Pop stars attend and perform with us all the time; you’ll see some testimonials on from Slash to Adam Lambert to LeAnn Rimes. The next shows (not “concerts!”) are March 29-30 at the Saban Theater in Beverly Hills. We’ll sell out all 1500 seats for all three shows of British pop music (Elton John, George Michael, et al); big productions with lots of dancing. Bring your friends; you’ll be blown away. I get your message about “commercial weight.” Just know that GMCLA is supported by HBO, LOGO and several other major entertainment entities, not just financially. They sit on our Board of Directors too. The commercial link is firmly established, and it’s happened in record speed. Stay tuned!

    Now would everybody please forward this URL to the rest of the world? Be our Enablers. Let’s work together to turn up the heat!


  6. steve talbert says

    Young people aren’t the target audience. And I would that the people most torn up are the gays unfortunate enlighten to have been brought up in a religious family. They have emotional trauma as well as potential physical. For them a chorus is powerfully comforting. Particularlysince many a gay kid has been in a church choir.

  7. says

    @James and Simon, if it was 1989 it would make sense to mention Gorbachev and glasnost. There were only very few mentions of homosexuality in the press under Gorbachev. No LGBT groups and homosexuality was still illegal.

    It was only AFTER Gorbachev, AFTER the breakup of the USSR, and during Yeltsin that homosexuality was decriminalized and the first LGBT groups and publications appeared. This concert is an example of the good side of the 90s. Unfortunately there was also the bad side: widespread looting of the economy by unfettered capitalism, the financial crisis of 1998, and by 1999 people were tired of uncertainty, setting the stage for Putin.

  8. says

    Pugacheva, who’s THE gay icon (think Barbra + Judy + Madonna…) and who owes her career to gay men, some of whom have been her husbands, criticized Madonna for protesting the anti-propaganda law and refused herself to say anything against it.

  9. eddie_schirm says

    Absolutely Amazing! Wish I could have seen this live. I must comment though, as an American who has traveled the world with the Military, and actually trained in Russia, with the Russian Military, many foreigners do not know English. It would have been much better, and more moving, if the Chorus had sang it in Russian, or at least a portion of it, so everyone in the audience could understand. Also, not sure how the song was introduced, as it has a poignant American Civil Rights history. This song goes back to the days of slavery. It’s an American Negro Spiritual, sung in the plantation fields. Russians would not be familiar with this tune, or the story behind it. Maybe their next trip over they can think about it. … Not a difficult task. I sang in High School Chorus, and learned songs in Latin, German, Spanish, Italian, etc..

  10. Jess says

    Gay men are caused by too much estrogen exposure, especially fake estrogens found in the majority of plastics we use daily and in our air pollution and even food supply. its everywhere and those unable to combat this influx of estrogen in our modrn era , for better or worse….turn gay. In women it manifests as endometriosis and bad pms, ovarian cysts, and infertility. I suggest everyone research Estrogen Dominance and try theirbest to avoid excessive estrogen because its everywhere and being mindful is the first step in healing as a species. Estrogen dominance causes homosexuality, endometriosis, infertiliy, candida (yeast) overgrowth which leads to every cancer in the book. This is real stuff. Look it up!!!!

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