Things to do in Chicago for music fanson May 27, 2021 at 1:00 pm

Welcome to our highlights for concerts, festivals and live music in Chicago. From free shows at Millennium Park to large festivals like Ravinia and Lollapalooza, and intimate shows at small local venues, our guide has all the latest music entertainment. Bookmark this page and check back for updates on concerts and events.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra

When: live performances May 27-June 13

What: The Chicago Symphony Orchestra returns with live performances May 27-June 13. The first program (May 27-30) conducted by Michael Mulcahy includes Aaron Copland’s iconic “Fanfare for the Common Man” and Samuel Barber’s 20th-century interpretation of a Bach chorale paired with works by Tilson Thomas, Bernstein and Schuller. Erina Yashima conducts (June 3-6) two “Novelettes” by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, Schubert’s Symphony No. 5, the string orchestra version of Jessie Montgomery’s “Strum” and Kodaly’s orchestral “Dances of Galanta”; and Edo de Waart (June 10-13) conducts Mozart’s overture to “Don Giovanni,” Wagner’s “Siegfried Idyll” and Mozart’s Symphony No. 40.

Where: Symphony Center, 220 S. Michigan

Tickets: $29+;

Shannon McNally

Shannon McNally
Shannon McNally
Photo by Alysse Gafkjen

When: livestreamed show at 8 p.m. May 28 from City Winery Nashville

What: Singer-songwriter Shannon McNally celebrates the release of her new album, “The Waylon Sessions” with a livestreamed show from City Winery Nashville. She’s assembled an all-star band along with special guests Rodney Crowell, Buddy Miller and Kenny Vaughn. On the album, McNally puts a woman’s spin on outlaw classics by Jennings and his cohorts. The result is not so much a tribute but a rethinking of a catalog long considered a bastion of masculinity.

Tuesdays on the Terrace

“Tuesdays on the Terrace” at the MCA in Chicago.
Copyright MCA

When: 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays June 1-Aug. 31

Where: Museum of Contemporary Art’s outdoor sculpture garden, 220 E. Chicago

What: Tuesdays on the Terrace returns to the Museum of Contemporary Art’s outdoor sculpture garden. The popular jazz concert series features an array of Chicago jazz musiciansFirst up on June 1 is Alexis Lombre’s Ancestral Awakenings. Free with advance reservations. Visit

Henhouse Prowlers

Henhouse Prowlers
Henhouse Prowlers
Russ Boxer Photo

When: Streams free May 28-June 13

Where: City Winery, 1200 W. Randolph

Tickets: $35. Visit

More information: Get ready for some furious fingerpicking and perfect harmonies when the Chicago bluegrass band Henhouse Prowlers celebrates the release of a new album “The Departure” with four shows at City Winery.

Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra

When: Streams free May 28-June 13

Where: Visit

What: The final online event of the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra’s season includes Aaron Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man” and Eric Ewazen’s Symphony in Brass, Valerie Coleman’s “Portrait of Josephine” and Joan Tower’s “Fanfare for the Uncommon Woman No. 1,” which is often viewed as a feminist counterpoint to the Copland work of similar name.


When: July 29-Aug. 1

Where: Grant Park

What: Lollapalooza returns to Grant Park July 29-Aug. 1 with Foo Fighters, Post Malone, Tyler, the Creator, Miley Cyrus, Dababy, Marchmello, Journey, Megan Thee Stallion, Roddy Ricch, Kaytranada and more. $375+/festival pass. Visit

Riot Fest

When: Sept. 17-19

Where: Douglass Park, Chicago

What: Riot Fest is back, this year with Nine Inch Nails, The Smashing Pumpkins, Run the Jewels, Pixies, Faith No More, Devo, Lupe Fiasco and more.

Tickets: $125+/day $155+/festival pass. Visit

Pitchfork Music Festival

When: Sept. 19-12

Where: Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph

What: The Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Union Park, 1501 W. Randolph. Performers include Erykah Badu Phoebe Bridgers, St. Vincent, The Fiery Furnaces, Angel Olsen, Kim Gordon Waxahatchee, Flying Lotus, Thundercat and more.

Tickets: $90/day, $195 festival pass. Visit

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