Singer Spotlight

Gay Keuhl

1. When did you join the LCC?

My first year was 2011. I was thrilled to be singing again.

2. Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Raytown when it was still considered country. We bought the old Smith farm that was on Smith road which was later changed to 95th street.

3. Tell us about your family – are you married, single, any children?

I am married. Chris and I have been together for forty-two years. I had two sons in my first marriage and they gifted me with four grandchildren and now I have four great grandchildren.

4. What is (or was) your professional career?

I helped start the Mother’s Day Out program and taught it for five years in the sixties at the Blue Ridge Methodist Church. I then taught the two children’s choirs and Noel Fulkerson taught the adult and high school choirs. Those jobs helped pay my way to school. After school I became a Speech-Language Pathologist. I started out at Truman Medical Center and then became director of the Speech and Hearing Clinic at the Clay County Health Center.

5. Tell us about your choral experiences. What choirs have you sang with? Are you currently singing with other choirs?

I have always sung in the school choirs starting in second grade. My music teacher took me to her church every Wednesday and Sunday at one of those big churches over by Linwood in Kansas City, We were up in the balcony It was magical. In high school I sang in the girls glee club, the mixed chorus and the special acapella chorus. I was fortunate to be able to take voice lessons at the UMKC Conservatory of Music in the fifties under the direction of Latonia Barnett. In the sixties and seventies I did a lot of solo singing and during that time I sang in the Messiah Chorus at the Temple in Independence. Currently I am happy to be giving all my singing time to LCC.

6. Besides choral music, what other styles of music do you enjoy?

That’s a hard question for me because I feel there is music for every mood and occasion. I usually can find something in every genre. I will say that Rap is not in there for me.

7. What has been your favorite or most memorable LCC concert or song?

Again, a difficult question. Every concert is so special at the time. I always know when I have the songs down when they begin to play through my head. I always get caught up and swept away by the beauty, intensity and harmony of each piece. I always look forward to the next concert the experience the next music.

8. What are your hobbies or interests other than singing?

I did gymnastics in grade school. It was swim team and softball in high school. And from my twenties to my thirties I trained and taught Judo. I competed and placed in the National Championships. I embroidery, crochet, knit, and sew. We used to do Civil War reenactment in the eighties. We were in Crowley’s Unit from Liberty. I was a Sister of Mercy nurse. During that time I made a lot of Confederate soldier uniforms and women’s dresses and ball gowns complete with hoop skirts. I might add that wearing a wool nun’s habit in the summer is very, very hot. I made my son’s suits when they were young. Now I am a Master Gardener and spend time with genealogy.

9. What is your favorite food or dessert?

I love to cook and bake. It is fun to try out new recipes. I like to try food from other cultures as well. Every year I have a big Korean meal that the whole family waits for. I was fortunate to spend some time in Korea so my sons grew up tasting food from that culture.

10.Do you have any pets? What kind and how many?

I am NOT a crazy cat lady, but we have five cats. When we lose one, we get another. They are all well trained. They line up at their station for their food and are pretty good at following commands.

11.If you could have dinner with your favorite musician, singer, composer from any time period, who would be?

Again, a hard question. There is so much good music out there it would be difficult to choose. I’ll think on that.

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