City of Chicago Celebrates in 2008 the 10th Anniversary of World Music Festival: Chicago

Chicago is gearing up to showcase the best of today’s international music at the 10th Annual World Music Festival: Chicago 2008. This year the festival takes place September 19-25, 2008. The city wide, multi-venue, one-week festival has attracted nearly 500,000 people from Chicago and beyond since its inception in 1999. Organized by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), the Festival, which showcases both traditional and contemporary music from diverse cultures across the world, has presented more than 500 artists and ensembles from more than 50 countries in its 10-year run.

The 2008 edition features more than 70 events at 21 venues, of which 38 are admission free. The line-up includes more than 65 artists representing 39 countries, including 30 artists that will make their Chicago debut at the Festival. As part of the "One World Under One Roof" closing night event at the Chicago Cultural Center (September 25, 6 – 11 pm), the Festival is debuting an International Market Place, featuring more than 30 arts, crafts and food vendors and more.

When the Festival began, it was one of the only international music festivals in the country, “ said DCA Senior Program Director Michael Orlove. “Ten years later, we are still proud to continue our mission of providing accessible and affordable music programming to the City of Chicago through this exciting Festival.”

World Music Festival has debuted so many international artists to Chicago audiences,” said DCA Program Coordinator Brian Keigher. “Groups like Gogol Bordello, Lila Downs, Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Yerba Buena, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Balkan Beat Box, Antibalas and more have not only played the Festival, but have returned to Chicago many times because there’s an audience for them here now.”

For more information, call the World Music Festival Hotline at 312.742.1938 or visit


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