Their voices are strong, their message is powerful, and their vision is clear.

For more than a decade, the Gay Men’s Chorus of South Florida (GMCSF) has served our community through song, and now the search is on for a new leader. Artistic Director Harold Dioquino has decided to leave after this season of shows.

Proving that the GMCSF is an artistically special place to work, Executive Director Mark Kent said dozens of people applied the last time this job was open.

“Those who applied the first time stated they were interested because of the impressive quality and growth of our chorus, the great location of South Florida, and the vibrant LGBTQ+ community,” Kent said.

Fans of the chorus don’t need to worry about a major shift in style or direction. Kent said the board is looking for someone to step in and help the organization grow and evolve.

“We are looking for a talented, visionary leader who can fuel our growth, develop our singers, and program concerts that create ‘Wow!’ for our community,” Kent said. “The ideal candidate also must — and this is essential — have a deep personal passion for our mission: ‘To sing so that LGBTQ+ people can live their truth through quality music experiences that inspire audiences, open minds, change hearts, and affirm our common humanity.’”

Maestro Dioquino plans to take some time for himself and continue his work as Music Minister for Church by the Sea in Bay Harbor Islands, but will miss the people he’s directed.

“I love this chorus. I have been a part of it since its inception 11 years ago. Serving as artistic director for the past six years has been extremely rewarding for me,” he said. “The experience has enriched my life greatly, and the members have really been like a family to me.” Chairman of the Board of Directors Rick Vaughan says they’ve been preparing for this moment.

“Harold began discussing this change with us before the pandemic. We are grateful to him for sharing his talents with us for so many years, making us the highly regarded arts organization we are,” Vaughan said.

Kent hopes to have the new artistic director hired by July. The new season starts in September, which isn’t that far off when you’re planning productions on a grand scale.

“As you can imagine, putting together a full season of concerts takes months and months of planning,” he said. “This is something we usually do at least six months in advance of our first rehearsal in September.”