Millennium Park celebrates summer with sizzling lineup of free programs, films and festivals

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Saturday, June 3, 2023
Millennium Park celebrates summer with sizzling lineup of free programs, films and festivals
Millennium Park is kicking off its summer season, bringing in world-class free arts programming. Here's your guide.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Millennium Park is kicking off its summer season, bringing world-class free arts programming to the Midwest's number-one attraction.

Season highlights include the Millennium Park Summer Film Series, Summer Workouts and the iconic Chicago Gospel Music Festival on Saturday, with GRAMMY-winning headliners Karen Clark Sheard and Tye Tribbett.

This summer, guests will be required to enter all Pritzker Pavilion events (concerts, films and more) through special entrances off Randolph and Monroe streets. Visit Cloud Gate, Crown Fountain and other attractions via entrances off Michigan Avenue.

Here is the list of attractions at the park this summer. All events are subject to change. You can also see the full schedule of free events at

Uniting Voices Chicago presents "Paint the Town Red"

Thursday, May 25 at 11am

"Paint the Town Red" is one of Uniting Voices Chicago's (formerly the Chicago Children's Choir) most anticipated and largest events of the year, bringing together singers from every corner of Chicago and every level of our programs in song.

Millennium Park Summer Workouts

May 27 - September 2

Most Saturdays, 8am - 11:45am

8-8:45am Pilates (no classes 7/1)

9-9:45am Yoga (no classes 7/1)

10-10:45am Cardio Kickboxing (no classes on 6/10, 7/1, 9/2)

11-11:45am Zumba (no classes on 6/10, 7/1, 9/2)

Summer Workouts are supported by the McDonald's Active Lifestyles Endowment managed by the Millennium Park Foundation.

Chicago Gospel Music Festival

Saturday, June 3 from 5:30pm - 9pm

Kicking off summer in Millennium Park with a powerful lineup of top talent. Hosted by Inspiration 1390's Sonya Blakey, DeAndre Patterson and Candace McCollum.

5:30pm Dance Performance by Praize Productions, Inc.

6:00-6:40pm Choir Nation

7:00-7:40pm Karen Clark Sheard

8:00-9:00pm Tye Tribbett

Praize Productions, Inc presents "Call Her by Name"

Sunday, June 4

"Call Her By Name" is a multidisciplinary, theatrical production that is a call and response for the modern-day woman, presented by Praize Productions, Inc. one of the four Chicago companies in residence at Millennium Park.

Additional upcoming productions by resident companies include Chicago Human Rhythm Project (July 23); National Public Housing Museum (August 25) and Puerto Rican Arts Alliance (August 26). The Millennium Park Residency Program is made possible with support by the Millennium Park Foundation and Pritzker Foundation.

Chicago Blues Festival

Thursday - Sunday, June 8 - 11

Concerts will also be livestreamed at

The largest, free Blues festival in the world returns to Chicago with four days of top tier talent celebrating the city's renowned Blues legacy. Access full schedule at

Grant Park Music Festival (GPMF)

June 14 - August 19

Millennium Park is the official home of GPMF, which returns June 14 with Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Carlos Kalmar leading a lineup of international soloists and the award-winning Grant Park Orchestra and Chorus in a ten-week season that runs through August 19.

Millennium Park Summer Music Series

June 22-August 21

Mondays + Thursdays, 6:30pm - 9pm

Access artist photos

Thursday, June 22 Tribute to Ramsey Lewis: A Gentleman of Jazz, with special surprise guests

Monday, June 26 Eddie Palmieri Salsa Orchestra, El Laberinto del Coco

Thursday, July 13 Big Freedia, "The Femmergy" feat. Mister Wallace & Friends + VITIGRRL

Monday, July 17 Yemi Alade, Son Palenque + DJ's TopDonn & Dee Money

Thursday, July 20 Stephen Marley, Skanking Lizard & Jump Up Records' 30th anniversary with DJ Chuck Wren

Monday, July 24 Kurt Vile and the Violators , Finom

Monday, July 31 Shemekia Copeland, Martha Redbone Roots Project

Thursday, Aug 10 GRAMMY Legacies and Looking Ahead - Vieux Farka Touré & Cedric Burnside

Thursday, Aug 17 PJ Morton, Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio

Monday, Aug 21 Carla Morrison, Girl Ultra + DJ Roxyo Sounds

The Ramsey Lewis Tribute and Eddie Palmieri Salsa Orchestra concerts are supported by 90.0fm WDCB. PJ Morton's performance is supported by Inspiration 1390. Kurt Vile and the Violators and Shemekia Copeland concerts are supported by 93XRT. Carla Morrison's performance is made possible by a grant from the National Museum of Mexican Art.

Joffrey Ballet's "Joffrey for All Celebration"

Sunday, June 25 at 5:30pm

The Joffrey Ballet is pleased to announce an evening of free public performances in the heart of downtown Chicago at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. Created as a gift to all Chicagoans, and the first event of its kind, The Joffrey Ballet's "Joffrey for All Celebration" will feature dance workshops in the lawn and performances by Joffrey Company Artists, the Joffrey Academy of Dance, and students from the Joffrey Community Engagement programs.

Chicago Symphony Orchestra's "Concert for Chicago"

Tuesday, June 27 at 6:30pm

Celebrate Zell Music Director Riccardo Muti's remarkable tenure with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at this free concert in Millennium Park. Enjoy performances of the heartfelt Andante moderato, written by longtime Chicago resident Florence Price, and Tchaikovsky's exhilarating Fifth Symphony as the CSO closes the 2022/23 Season in style.

Millennium Park Summer Film Series

July 11 - August 29

Tuesdays at 6:30pm

Tuesday, July 11 Fast Five (130 minutes, PG-13)

Tuesday, July 18 Turning Red (100 minutes, PG)

Tuesday, July 25 Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (161 min, PG-13)

Tuesday, August 1 Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised) (118 minutes, PG-13)

Tuesday, Aug 8 Clueless (97 minutes, PG-13)

Tuesday, Aug 15 Top Gun: Maverick (130 minutes, PG-13)

Tuesday, Aug 22 Barbershop (102 minutes, PG-13)

Tuesday, Aug 29 Everything Everywhere All at Once (139 minutes, R)

Chicago Human Rhythm Project

Sunday, July 23 (start time to be announced)

Celebrating its 35th anniversary season, Chicago Human Rhythm Project (CHRP) will present free performances, classes and interactive events in collaboration with Natya Dance Theatre, Chicago Dance Crash, Collaborative Institute of Cultural Arts, and Ayodele Drum & Dance throughout Millennium Park and with a culminating performance at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. CHRP presents rhythm-culture in performance, education and community development programs that foster great art and cultural pluralism. This Millennium Park Residency performance is made possible by the generous support of the Millennium Park Foundation and the Pritzker Foundation.

Broadway in Chicago

Monday, August 14 at 6:15pm

Come celebrate the best of Broadway at the free Broadway In Chicago Summer Concert, sponsored by ABC 7 Chicago. Featuring performances from the hottest shows coming to Chicago, this year's concert will include favorites like Hamilton plus new shows including Boop! The Musical and A Wonderful World. More shows to be announced at a later date.

Lyric Opera's "Sunday in the Park with Lyric"

Sunday, August 20 at 7pm

Join Lyric Opera of Chicago for an evening of beautiful music as artists from Lyric's Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center perform a variety of favorites from the 2023/24 Season accompanied by members of the Lyric Opera Orchestra, conducted by Enrique Mazzola, Lyric's music director. Bring a blanket, your favorite snacks, your fellow music lovers, and those you can't wait to introduce to opera for this free, fun and family friendly, can't-miss summer delight that always ushers in a new cultural season on a high note.

"Sunday in the Park with Lyric" is generously supported through an endowment by an Anonymous Foundation with additional support from the Rhoda & Henry Frank Family Foundation.

Bidi Bidi Boom Boom: The Selena Tribute Concert

Thursday, August 24 at 6pm

The National Museum of Mexican Art proudly presents the return of Bidi Bidi Boom Boom: The Selena Tribute Concert. Last year Chicago showed that its love for the legendary and iconic Tex-Mex queen of cumbia runs deep. Join us for what promises to be yet another unforgettable evening filled with music, dancing and an exciting new lineup of artists. There will be an additional big surprise artist who will be announced on the day of the event. Come with family and friends and leave with Fotos y Recuerdos.

National Public Housing Museum

Friday, August 25 at 6pm

The National Public Housing Museum is the only cultural institution devoted to telling the story of public housing in the United States. Its mission is to preserve, promote, and propel the right of all people to a place where they can live and prosper - a place to call home. As one of the four Millennium Park Resident companies, they will present a concert on the Jay Pritzker Pavilion stage on August 25, showcasing iconic artists with meaningful connections to public housing. They will also have a weekend-long pop-up installation in the park focused on fostering civic love and engagement. This Millennium Park Residency performance is made possible by the generous support of the Millennium Park Foundation and the Pritzker Foundation.

Puerto Rican Arts Alliance

Somos un Solo Pueblo, Mexico y Puerto Rico

Saturday, August 26 at 6pm

The Puerto Rican Arts Alliance (PRAA) in partnership with Cuerdas Clásicas, AfriCaribe, and the Chicago Philharmonic present Somos un Solo Pueblo, Mexico y Puerto Rico as part of the inaugural Millennium Park Residency Program. This one-of-a-kind symphonic concert honors and celebrates Chicago's vibrant and diverse Puerto Rican and Mexican communities on the iconic Jay Pritzker Pavilion stage. Emeritus Puerto Rico Symphony Conductor Roselin Pabón from San Juan, Puerto Rico and Symphony Conductor & Composer Sergio Cárdenas from Cd. Victoria, Mexico will present a cross-culture repertoire including popular Puerto Rican songs like Preciosa, plus Bomba and Plena music. Chicago groups Latin Music Project Ensemble, Cuerdas Clásicas, Mexican Folkloric Dance Company, and AfriCaribe will join in the celebration onstage with guest artists from Mexico and Puerto Rico. PRAA also will bring "pop-up" music presentations throughout the summer on the Millennium Park grounds.

This Millennium Park Residency performance is made possible by the generous support of the Millennium Park Foundation and the Pritzker Foundation.

Chicago Jazz Festival

Thursday, August 31 - Sunday, September 3

The Chicago Jazz Festival returns with performances in Millennium Park and at the Chicago Cultural Center. Produced by DCASE and programmed by the Jazz Institute of Chicago, the schedule will be released at a future date.

The Harris Theater for Music and Dance

Saturday, September 9 (start time to be announced)

The Harris Theater for Music and Dance will host a collaborative 20th Anniversary Season kick-off celebration with a showcase of performances, park activations, and other activities featuring more than 20 of the local performing arts companies (Resident Companies) that call the Harris Theater home-including Ballet 5:8, Ballet Chicago, Chicago Gay Men's Chorus, Chicago Philharmonic, Giordano Dance Chicago, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Muntu Dance Theatre, Music of the Baroque, and South Chicago Dance Theatre-alongside independent artists and community partners. Programming will include performances on the Pritzker Pavilion Stage and the Grainger Plaza near Cloud Gate, as well as the Great Lawn. All programming offered during the Resident Company Showcase is family-friendly and free to the public.