Music Without Borders Series


Nile Music Orchestra of Sudan
by Banning Eyre
In the heart of Chicago lies an oasis. It’s Millennium Park, a space created in the busy downtown hub that was designed with Chicago in mind. Until its completion in 2004, there was no recognizable public space in Chicago comparable to the great plazas and squares of European or Mexican urban areas that bring people together and capture a city’s unique personality. The lush landscaping, artistic features, world-class architecture, and live music performances work together to provide Chicagoans a place to interact with each other and the world.

One of the highlights of the Park is the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, named after a prominent Chicago businessman and designed by famed architect Frank Gehry. Beginning Thursday, June 19, the "Music Without Borders" series, now in its third season, transforms the Pavilion into a global launching pad. The string of performances brings the world to Chicago in themed concerts. The array of music and cultures represented provide residents the opportunity to experience sights and sounds they may not have experienced before - or perhaps have overlooked in their own neighborhoods. Michael Orlove, senior program director of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs explains, "We’re presenting performers that can easily extend into any of the dozens of communities here in Chicago."

Millennium Park’s "Music Without Borders" series includes six concerts in total. All events are free and open to the public. Here is the full schedule:

Thursday, June 19:
6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
Miquel Gil and the Arab Orchestra of Barcelona/Maria del Mar Bonet
A sonic feast of Catalonian culture showcasing the range of the region’s delights

Thursday, June 26:
6:30 PM - 8:00 PM
The Bachata Roja Concert: Unsung Heroes, Rediscovered Icons with Mayra Andrade
Dominican acoustic bachata legends joined by a rising bachatero and a Cape Verdean songstress

Saturday, June 28:
8:30 PM - 10:30 PM
Orchestra Baobab
This iconic Senegalese band mixes Afro-Cuban, Portuguese Creole, Congolese rumba, highlife, calypso and traditional Senegalese styles

Thursday, July 10:
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Sudanese Music and Dance Festival
A Sudanese sampler of regional superstars performing in a gesture of peace and hope for a united Sudan.

Thursday, July 17:
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Pitchfork Music Festival Preview Night
A Music Without Borders/Pitchfork Festival co-presentation featuring an evening filled with an eclectic sampling of music from around the globe.

Wednesday, Aug. 27:
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Bajofondo Tango Club, with Fernando Oter
An electronic tango project lead by Gustavo Santaolalla, showcasing the past, present, and future of Argentine tango

[Published on: 6/15/08]

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TheGreenKynd starstarstar Mon 6/16/2008 06:17AM
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Millennium Park is a really nice place and it's pretty cool all these concerts are free.

briank67 starstarstarstarstar Mon 6/16/2008 08:59AM
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i think it's awesome that chicago has so much cheap/free stuff to do in the summer. there's something going on in millennium park almost EVERY DAY and it's almost always free. the 'audio picnic' series goes on almost every monday evening and showcases local electronic music. my friends dropped by last week and it was cool (plus alcohol is allowed...but please don't ruin that privilege!), but more people need to come. the pritzker pavilion and great lawn form an amazing venue, with plenty of cool gardens and spaces to wander around nearby. too bad they don't play too many 'rock' friends and i think this would be a great place to see a band like, oh,'s a link to EVERYTHING going on in the park:

DJWarp starstarstarstar Mon 6/16/2008 12:52PM
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You want rock? See link below. Audible Architecture: Chicago Nightclubs at Noon,WKP-News-audible13North.article

DJWarp Mon 6/16/2008 12:54PM
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oops...let me try that link again.,WKP-News-audible13North.article

kirkbrew starstarstarstarstar Tue 6/17/2008 12:09PM
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Last year The Decemberist played with the Grant Park Orchestra. Lawn seats were free. Wilco played a fundraiser and lawn seats were $20 ($10 was for the charity, $10 was for Ticketmaster - serious).

This year is nuts. Death Cab for $20, Andrew Bird for free, Steppenwolf Theater, Joffrey Ballet, Tchaikovsky's 6th, Beethovens 7th...and count on a Wilco show in September again.

Like Ravinia, you can bring in chairs, food and drinks...Suck on it Red Rocks. You have some catch up to do!