On World AIDS Day, The Red Ribbon Revue at the Abrons Art Center in New York City celebrated the work of HIV-positive songwriters and featured performances by artists who are living with the virus.

Hosted by Cecil Baldwin, the event was conceived by coproducers Sam Bolen and Brian Mummert as a way to fight the stigma surrounding HIV. Even though an HIV diagnosis is no longer a death sentence, stigma can keep people from getting tested and accessing treatment. The producers sought to give artists who are living openly with HIV a platform to raise their voices with the hope of dismantling that stigma as well as celebrate the lives they are leading.

Bolen spoke onstage about Michael Friedman, a composer, lyricist and cocreator of Broadway’s Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, who died at age 41 of AIDS-related complications. His death in 2017 shocked the theater world and sparked conversations about the virus, which many consider to be a manageable chronic condition. Friedman had been diagnosed with HIV only nine weeks before his death, which led to speculation that HIV-related stigma had prevented him from getting tested sooner.

Bolen was one of those who was shocked by Friedman’s death. After he was subsequently diagnosed with HIV himself, he recalled how he chose to be open about his status as a way of educating others and dispelling fears about the virus.

The Red Ribbon Revue showcased the music of Howard Greenfield (d. 1986), Jacques Morali (d. 1991), Peter Allen (d. 1992), Chris DeBlasio (d. 1993), Howard Ashman (d. 1991), Michael Callen (d. 1993), Steve Schalchlin, Dick Scanlan and Jerry Herman. Hamilton’s Javier Muñoz was among the artists living with HIV who sang at the event. Tony-nominated actress Beth Malone of Fun Home (who is not living with HIV) appeared as a special guest and sang a song from Thoroughly Modern Millie. (Scanlan, a former POZ editor-in-chief, wrote the musical’s lyrics and cowrote the book.)

The Red Ribbon Revue raised funds for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and mothers2mothers. The evening was a touching tribute that celebrated both those we’ve lost to HIV and those who continue to live with the virus.

Check out additional clips from The Red Ribbon Revue below.