There’s something for everyone at Ravinia Festival, Chicago’s popular summer concert extravaganza under the stars. North America’s oldest and seemingly its most diverse music festival, that has been compared to an outdoor Carnegie Hall, kicks off its 2015 season on June 13th (through September 12th).
Whether sitting on the expansive lawn, under a canopy of mature trees, or in the covered Pavilion, visitors will soon be clamoring for a taste of all the Ravinia Festival has to offer.
The upcoming season is jam-packed with more than 120 events from the latest and greatest hot acts, to jazz, film and Ravinia favorites plus 60 artist debuts and 55 classical works never before performed at Ravinia.
With about 65 percent of this year’s events featuring classical music, including the annual summer residency of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, classical fans have a lot to anticipate. From “Mahler and Mozart” (July 22) to the not to be missed August 1st “Tchaikovsky Spectacular”–complete with Ravinia’s signature cannon fire during the “1812” Overture–and more–Ravinia will showcase the best of the best.
Highlights for the season include:
- The superstar pairing of Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra on June 26 and 27.
- Music director James Conlon will be bidding adieu to Ravinia this season, recalling favorite repertoire from his three-decade association with the festival and concluding his run with “The Flying Dutchman” (August 15).
- The Gipsy Kings perform June 17.
- Sheryl Crow comes to the Festival on June 25.
- The Doobie Brothers are on tap June 30.
- Aretha Franklin sings “The Great Diva Classics” (July 11).
- Bobby McFerrin conducts the best from Porgy and Bess, (July 8).
- CSO goes to the movies with giant screens on the Pavilion stage and lawn with Star Trek (August 16); Gladiator (August 2); scenes and music from Walt Disney’s 1940 Fantasia and Fantasia 2000 (July 12); and Danny Elfman’s music from the films of Tim Burton (July 14).
- Frank Sinatra fans won’t want to miss the Sinatra Centennial--a celebration of Sinatra’s 100th birth anniversary with a series of events including his hits choreographed by Venetia Stifler and performed by Concert Dance Inc. (September 1st and 2nd); his son, Frank Sinatra Jr. pays tribute to his dad along with a full orchestra in a multimedia celebration (September 4th).
- At age 80, Ravinia favorite Ramsey Lewis returns to the park for his CSO debut and jazz concert on August 8.
- Seth MacFarlane performs August 21.
- Ravinia fav Chicago returns for a two night stand August 22 and 23.
- Harry Connick Jr. heads to Ravinia for the first time in 25 years (August 7).
- Diana Krall brings her Wallflower World Tour to Ravinia on August 9.
- Then there’s Santana (August 29-30).
Tickets to Ravinia’s 2015 season are on sale now for donors at the Friend level and above. Tickets to the general public will go on sale, online only, starting at 5 a.m. on April 28 exclusively at the Ravinia Festival website. The Ravinia box office windows open May 30 and phone orders can be placed beginning on May 31 at 847 266 5100.
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