From music festivals of worldwide renown like Grant Park’s Lollapalooza to Chicago’s beloved free neighborhood street festivals that pop up all over the city this time of the year, there are a plethora of events that make Chicago one of the greatest summer cities on the planet.
While those larger festivals attract some of the best talents from around the world, tickets to enter are far from cheap. On the other hand the smaller free street festivals, despite being wonderful events themselves, do not usually attract the sort of names that fill out arenas around the world.
Next month, however, a historic concert will take place right here in Chicago completely free of charge.
Returning for its third year, the free performing arts festival at Navy Pier Chicago Live! has announced that music legend Mavis Staples will perform an hour-long concert on Saturday, September 23.
With 80 distinct artists and cultural organizations performing across three stages on Saturday, September 23, and Sunday, September 24, Chicago Live! is the largest free performing arts festival in the Midwest but this is the first time a singer of Mavis Staples’ caliber will play at the beloved event for free.
As a Blues AND Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, chart-topping legend, Grammy Award-winner, and civil rights activist, the Mavis Staples has had on music and culture cannot be overstated.
From marching with Dr. Martin Luther King to performing at John F. Kennedy’s inauguration, the last surviving member of her family’s band The Staple Singers is nothing short of an icon and once-in-a-generation artist.
Named one of the ‘100 Greatest Singers of all Time’ by Rolling Stone, any chance to see such an icon should not be passed up.
Chicago Live! will feature more than 25 new groups in addition to over 40 returning performances spanning every artistic genre including music, dance, theatre, spoken word, improv, vocal performance, and more.
Mavis Staples is set to perform as the closing act of Chicago Live! on Saturday, September 23 from 8 pm to 9 pm on the Peoples Gas Lake Stage in Polk Bros Park.
More information can be found at navypier.org/chicago-live.
Want to get in the groove? Check out Mavis Staple’s Tiny Desk Concert here.
[Featured image from Facebook / @mavisstaples]