LIFT EVERY VOICE: To commemorate two decades of music — and major shifts in attitudes toward the LGBTQ community — Cantaria is preparing an impressive program featuring some songs from its original lineup as well as a handful of originals. Among the latter is a new, two-part piece composed by David Troy Francis of Asheville, with lyrics by local poet Gavin Dillard. Photo courtesy of Cantaria

Asheville Gay Men’s Chorus celebrates its 20th anniversar­y

Asheville was a very different place in 1998: There was no Blue Ridge Pride and what LGBTQ community existed was not entirely out and loud, much less well-connected. Despite all that, the North Carolina Pride celebration was scheduled to happen in Asheville that year, so there was buzz in the city about LGBTQ visibility and an opening for a new gay men’s chorus to emerge.