Chicago SummerDance 2014 Schedule

Chicago SummerDance 2014 Schedule

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Friday, June 27 – Sunday, September 14 in the Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park

The largest annual outdoor live music and dancing series in the United States, Chicago SummerDance, returns for its 18th year – and Chicagoans who love to dance will flock to the Spirit of Music Garden as it blossoms into a unique multi-dimensional, urban dance space. Chicago SummerDance is FREE and takes place in Grant Park’s Spirit of Music Garden (601 South Michigan Avenue) Friday and Saturday evenings, from 6 to 9:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoons from 4 to 7 p.m. between June 27 and September 14.

The Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park will also serve as a venue for World Music Festival Chicago 2014 on its opening weekend, September 12–14. These events will follow the Chicago SummerDance format with dance lessons and live music. World Music Festival Chicago 2014 runs Thursday, September 11 – Sunday, September 21. The complete schedule will be available at a later date at

Presented by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE), Chicago SummerDance brings people of all ages and skill levels together on a 4,900-square-foot, open-air dance floor made of 100% recycled plastic. The series offers FREE, introductory one-hour dance lessons by professional instructors followed by live music and dancing. The diverse lineup showcases various traditional and modern dance styles from all corners of the globe.

SummerDance highlights include Haitian vocalist Emeline Michel, who will bring her high-paced, Haitian compas and rara to Chicago for a captivating live performance on Friday, July 11. Not losing sight of her culture, Michel is noted for intertwining the traditional Haitian rhythms with jazz, pop, bossa nova and samba to create an inspirational, social and political message that has amassed an international audience. Before Emeline Michel takes the stage, the night kicks off with a Haitian folkloric dance lesson from Tamboula Ethnic Dance Company.

Chicago SummerDance Schedule
Each Friday and Saturday evening, dance lessons begin at 6 p.m. with live music at 7 p.m.; and every Sunday afternoon, dance lessons begin at 4 p.m. with live music at 5 p.m. Below is the complete 2014 schedule.

Friday, June 27
Rica Obsesion (Salsa)
Latin Rhythms – Academy of Dance and Performance (Salsa)

Saturday, June 28
Chicha Libre (Surf & Psychedelic Cumbia inspired by Peruvian Cumbia from the 1960s)
Chicago Dance (Cumbia)

Sunday, June 29
Steve Cooper Orchestra (Ballroom)
Arthur Murray Dance Center (Rumba, Cha –Cha)

Friday, July 4
Chicago Catz (R&B, Soul and Funk)
Dawud & Lara Shareef (Chicago Bop)

Saturday, July 5
National Steppers Society (Chicago Steppin’)
Ken Watkins (Chicago Steppin’)

Sunday, July 6
Alan Gresik Swing Shift Orchestra (Vintage Big Band)
Dance Center Chicago (Fox-Trot)

Friday, July 11
Emeline Michel (Haitian Compas and Rara with Jazz, Pop, Bossa nova and Samba)
Tamboula Ethnic Dance Company (Traditional Haitian Folkloric Dances)

Saturday, July 12
Jaojoby with Razia Said (Malagasy Salegy Dance Music)
Claude Zafinera and Razia Said (Malagasy Salegy Dance)

Sunday, July 13
Steve Riley & the Mamou Playboys (Cajun, Zydeco)
Louie Stallone and Monica Vachlon (Cajun Two-Step and Waltz)

Friday, July 18
Ricardo Lemvo & Makina Loca (Congalese Soukous & Rumba, Cuban Son & Salsa)
Dance Academy of Salsa (Mambo, Cha-Cha)

Saturday, July 19
Terrance Simien & the Zydeco Experience (Zydeco)
Buddy Bates and Rebecca Unger (Zydeco)

Sunday, July 20
Cheick Hamala Diabate and His Band (Malian Ngoni Music)
Kimosha P. Murphy (Dances from the African Diaspora)

Friday, July 25
SoundMinas Quintet (Brazilian Samba)
Dill Costa (Afro-Brazilian Bloco – Samba Dance)

Saturday, July 26
*Chicago House Music Party
DJ Gene Hunt (7:30 – 9 p.m.)
DJ Alan King (6 – 7:30 p.m.)

Sunday, July 27
Chicago Barn Dance Company (Country and Square Dance)
Meg Dedolph (Square and Contra Dance)

Friday, August 8
Mambo Express (Latin Big Band Mambo)
Mixed Motion Art (Mambo, Cha-Cha)

Saturday, August 9
*Chicago House Music Party
DJ Terry Hunter (7:30 – 9 p.m.)
DJ Heather (6 – 7:30 p.m.)

Sunday, August 10
Petra van Nuis Quintet (1920s, ‘30s & ‘40s Classic Swing)
Kasper Dance Studio (Fox-Trot)

Friday, August 15
The Fat Babies (1920s & ‘30s Jazz & Swing)
Big City Swing (Jitterbug)

Saturday, August 16
Swing Nouveau (High-energy 1930s,’40s,’50s & ‘90s Jump Swing)
Tommye Giacchino (East Coast Swing)

Sunday, August 17
Willy Torres (Salsa Dura)
Latin Street Dance Academy (Salsa, Mambo and Cha-Cha)

Friday, August 22
DJ Calvin (Chicago Steppin’)
Majestic Gents (Chicago Steppin’)

Saturday, August 23
Carpacho y Su Super Combo (Salsa)
May I Have This Dance (Salsa)

Sunday, August 24
Tangata Ensemble & the Kaia String Quartet (Tango and Milonga)
American Tango Institute (Argentine Tango)

Friday, August 29
Funkadesi (Bollywood, Bhangra, Reggae and Funk)
Bollywood Groove (Bollywood, Bhangra)

Saturday, August 30
The Hoyle Brothers (Honky-Tonk Country)
May I Have This Dance (Country Two-Step)

Sunday, August 31
Steve Anthony Orchestra (Ballroom)
Chicago Dance (Bolero, Tango)

Friday, September 5
Joel Paterson & the Modern Sounds (1930s & ‘40s Swing)
Margot Toppen and Riley Wimes, Jr. (Jitterbug)

Saturday, September 6
La Dynastia featuring Freddy Kenton (Salsa, Merengue, Bachata, Reggaeton and Latin R&B)
Dance Academy of Salsa (Bachata & Merengue)

Sunday, September 7
Teddy Lee Orchestra (Ballroom)
Fred Astaire Dance Studio – West Loop (Rumba, Waltz)

Friday, September 12
Chicago World Music Festival
Dos Santos: Anti-Beat Orquesta (Pan-Latin American Cumbia)
Latin Rhythms- Academy of Dance and Performance (Cumbia)

Saturday, September 13
Chicago World Music Festival
Las BomPleneras (Puerto Rican Bombazo)
Ivelisse Diaz – Bombera de Corazon (Bomba and Plena)

Sunday, September 14
Chicago World Music Festival
El Payo y La Tiranta (Rumba, Nuevo Flamenco)
Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater (Flamenco Rumba)

Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park
The Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park was developed and landscaped especially for Chicago SummerDance and received a Gold Award from the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association. Using a combination of annuals and perennials to create the spectacular splash of color throughout the summer, the garden’s layout incorporates a geometric design that pulls the visitor into the center of the garden. Classic-style wooden umbrellas, tables, and chairs circle the center of the garden, allowing visitors to sit and enjoy their surroundings. A variety of food and drinks are available for purchase at the SummerDance Grill. Outside alcohol is strictly prohibited at all Summer Dance events.

Chicago SummerDance Dance Floor
The open-air dance floor for Chicago SummerDance was designed by Chicago artist Dan Peterman out of recycled plastic. Titled Chicago Ground Cover, the floor was first installed in 1997 at the original Chicago SummerDance site in Grant Park along Michigan Avenue at Washington Street (now Millennium Park). Originally 2,500 square feet, it was first expanded to 3,500 square feet in 1999, and was then expanded to 4,600 square feet in 2008. In 2011, it was renovated and further expanded to 4,900 square-feet to accommodate the increasing number of SummerDance visitors.