The Columbus Gay Men’s Chorus (“CGMC”), central Ohio’s premiere TTBB vocal organization, is presenting their annual summer concert series, this year titled BANNED, on June 22 and 23 at the Riffe Center’s Davidson Theatre. The concert purposefully is influenced by current affairs, and is a reflection of the LGBTQIA+ community’s strong feelings about them.

“I, along with so many in the Queer community, have been scared, concerned, and angry about the way that our government is attacking oppressed individuals,” said Brayton Bollenbacher, Artistic Director for the Chorus. “These bans are meant to make us feel isolated and alone. But we aren't. We are an upset community of people that are tired of politicians making decisions that harm our community.”

Woven through the poignant concert’s lyrics, choreography and imagery are thematic elements of book bans, references to “Don’t Say Gay” legislation, affirmations of women’s and immigrants’ rights, and those of the transgender community. Bollenbacher said that BANNED’s programming is about “fighting back.”

“It's about advocating for all those that are oppressed and not succumbing to fear and hate,” Bollenbacher said about the concert. “It's also one of my best programmed shows I've ever put together, so there is a lot of artistic pride in the music selections.”

Donovan Jones, Executive Director of the Chorus, agrees. “This show not only highlights the importance of freedom of expression, but also underscores the resilience of our community in the face of attempts to erase our stories,” he said.

Concert-goers will find a blend of fight songs and anthems, such as Jack White’s iconic “Seven Nation Army,” to more reflective moments including “What You’d Call A Dream (Diamonds)” by John Riesen and Neill Campbell. Particularly exciting in this show is the world premiere of “BANNED Together,” an original commissioned piece by Pax Ressler which Bollenbacher describes as “pointed, musical, and inspiring.”

BANNED not only entertains but educates and inspires dialogue around critical issues affecting our community,” Jones continued. “It's an opportunity for both LGBTQIA+ individuals and allies to engage deeply with the narratives that shape our lives, reinforcing the importance of standing together against censorship and for inclusive representation.”

Since 1990, CGMC has been an outlet for LGBTQ+ community members who love to sing in a non-auditioned, inclusive environment. The Chorus has grown in its over 30 years to a consistent composition of well over 100 members of multiple sexual orientations and gender identities. It is now the largest TTBB (tenor, baritone, bass vocal range) chorus in Ohio.

CGMC is a nonprofit organization, and 100% of all contributions go directly to the support of its mission: “Inviting All With Voices Raised, Lives Changed.” To purchase tickets for BANNED and learn more about the Chorus, please visit