Recently, WorldPride 2014 Toronto (WP14TO) organizers announced a partnership with the Luminato Festival to showcase the world premiere of IF I LOVED YOU: Gentlemen Prefer Broadway – An Evening Of Love Duets, conceived by composer, singer and raconteur Rufus Wainwright.
The exclusive event will take place in the evening on June 14th, 2014 at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts and highlight an international group of pop, classical and musical theatre stars performing in pairs, including Rufus Wainwright, David Byrne, Boy George, Ezra Koenig (Vampire Weekend), Josh Groban, counter tenor Brennan Hall (River of Fundament), Glen Hansard (Once), Steven Page and Andrew Rannells (Book of Mormon).
"You can never underestimate the power of seeing yourself reflected in art, and how important that is to a feeling of belonging. WorldPride 2014 Toronto will showcase a rich range of LGBTQ art and voices from across the world in a once-in-a-lifetime event," says Chrystal Dean, WorldPride Manager. "We are delighted to partner with a cultural icon like the Luminato Festival to celebrate Toronto's vibrant arts community and bring focus on global LGBTQ struggles and triumphs."
Wainwright teams with Grammy- and Tony-winning musical director Stephen Oremus to redefine dozens of the most beloved gems in the Great American Songbook, all love songs from Broadway musicals. In their original productions, these songs were performed as duets by a man and a woman, or by a man singing about a woman. Wainwright's re-contextualizations, performed exclusively by men and to men, fortify the songs' universality as expressions of love.
"What my husband, Rufus Wainwright, has developed for this evening of celebrating love, is simply mind–boggling and promises to be one of the most unusual, and rewarding, nights of music," enthused Luminato Festival Artistic Director Jorn Weisbrodt. "Who doesn't want to hear these artists sing together? If I Loved You is not about turning something from "straight" to "gay," by singing love duets with only men, but instead, to declare the universality of love, and to celebrate love that comes in every shade."