Mary May 312.744.0576 Mary.email@example.com
The 29th Chicago Gospel Music Festival, presented by the Black McDonald’s Operators Association (BMOA) and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE), is June 27-29. Joining the previously announced McDonald’s Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour on Saturday, June 28, the festival’s headliners on Sunday, June 29 include gospel music artists Tye Tribbett, Karen Clark Sheard, VaShawn Mitchell and Tasha Cobbs – plus a special tribute to Dr. Charles G. Hayes.
The festival kicks off with FREE entertainment at the Chicago Cultural Center (78 E. Washington St.) on Friday, June 27, from 11am–4pm and continue at Ellis Park (37th & Cottage Grove) on Saturday, June 28 and Sunday, June 29 from 11am–8pm. At Ellis Park, the festival will feature two stages of FREE live music in the heart of Chicago’s historic Bronzeville neighborhood—the birthplace of gospel music.
The Chicago Gospel Music Festival weekend starts on Friday, June 27 at the Chicago Cultural Center in Preston Bradley Hall starting at 11am with a performance by Tiff Joy; followed by a performance by recording artist and vocalist Lorie Smith at 11:30am. The first day of the Gospel Music Festival concludes with the talented Adrian B. King & Company at 3:30pm.
The McDonald’s Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour will make a stop at the Gospel Music Festival on Saturday, June 28 at Ellis Park featuring previously announced artists Kurt Carr, the Mississippi Mass Choir, Anthony Brown & Group TherAPy, Uncle Reece and Moses Tyson, Jr. Saturday’s festivities will be hosted by vocalist Erica Campbell and comedian Jonathan Slocumb. Performances on the main stage will begin at 5pm.
Additionally on Saturday, there will be several day stage performances and a FREE Historical Tour of Bronzeville departing from the festival site beginning at 12:30 p.m. every half-hour until 3:30pm. The narrated 60-minute tour highlights the rich history of the south-side community and its role in the birth of gospel music through Ebenezer Baptist Church, First Church of Deliverance and Pilgrim Baptist, plus information on the Great Migration, “Black Belt” and the community’s connection to the Civil War and Civil Rights Movement. Tickets for these trolley tours can be reserved on-site; early arrival is suggested, as seats will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis.
On Sunday, June 29, the Chicago Gospel Music Festival will celebrate the life and music of the late Dr. Charles G. Hayes in a tribute featuring Pastor Derail Smith and the Dr. Charles G. Hayes Reunion Choir and Elder DeAndre Patterson, at 5pm to open the evening’s performances. After migrating from Alabama in 1955, Dr. Hayes started his pursuit to become a church musician. Known for his passionate dedication to his music, Dr. Hayes rooted himself as a leader in his home church of Cosmopolitan Church of Prayer and with popular gospel music selections such as “Making a Joyful Noise” and “He’s Keeping Me, I’ll Never Forget,” and he was also a well-respected figure on the music scene.
For Grammy® award winner Karen Clark Sheard, family is the only key to success that she needs, which is backed by her track record as a top gospel vocalist. As a quarter-member of the legendary Clark Sisters, Sheard launched her solo career with the support of not only her sisters, but an already established fan base. Sheard performs on the main stage Sunday at 5:45pm.
The dynamic gospel music duo of producer VaShawn Mitchell and vocalist Tasha Cobbs will perform at the main stage at 6:45pm on Sunday. Bringing out the best in each other, they have produced many tracks that have garnered them national attention including their Billboard hit “Nobody Greater,” but it was the inspirational EMI Gospel titled Grace that made them one of the most talked about duos of 2013.
The festival concludes Sunday evening with Grammy® award winning songwriter and singer Tye Tribbett at 7:45pm. Tribbett creates a new caliber of music as his style cannot be classified as one genre. After starting his early career entering competition after competition with a winning streak, Tribbett and his ensemble of music enthusiasts eventually found themselves on the stages backing music legends such as Elton John, Luther Vandross, Gloria Estefan and others. This jumpstarted a solo career like no other and Tribbett is now recognized as one of the most relevant and inspirational voices in the music industry.
Festival goers can enjoy music throughout the day with performance on the popular day stage showcasing the best in local, national and international Gospel Music performers celebrating the genres rich tradition and heritage. The stage will feature performances on Saturday and Sunday from Noon-4pm. See schedule below for the full lineup or visit chicagogospelmusicfestival.us.
On both days in Ellis Park, the festival will feature a Kids Activity Zone with face-painters, caricature artists and McDonald’s Characters. The Health & Wellness Oasis returns and attendees can gather health information, speak with experts and participate in activities that encourage healthy behaviors. In partnership with the Cook County Hospitals, attendees will learn about accessing preventative screenings and care. The Art Fair & Marketplace will offer festival goers the opportunity for a unique shopping venue featuring fine art, crafts, jewelry, clothing and more.
Two festival preview events will feature Gospel music performances at the Chicago Cultural Center, beginning Tuesday, June 17 in the Claudia Cassidy Theater, featuring performances and a conversation with Kierra Sheard, Warryn Campbell, and John J. Thompson. On Tuesday, June 24 in the Claudia Cassidy Theater at 5:30pm, there will be a screening of the Emmy Award Winning Chicago Gospel music television show, Jubilee Showcase, followed by a discussion with Director/Producer Steven Ordower.
The Chicago Gospel Music Festival is presented by the Black McDonald’s Operators Association (BMOA) and the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, and sponsored in part by the McDonald’s Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour, American Family Insurance, Aquafina, Chicago Sky, Chicago Transit Authority, Chicago Tribune, Communications Direct, Inspiration 1390 AM, LaGrou Distribution, Metra and Pepsi.
For the latest information on the Chicago Gospel Music Festival including artist information, visit chicagogospelmusicfestival.us, like us on Facebook at Chicago Gospel Music Festival or follow us on Twitter @ChicagoDCASE (#ChiGospelMusic).
Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) is dedicated to enriching Chicago’s artistic vitality and cultural vibrancy. This includes fostering the development of Chicago’s non-profit arts sector, independent working artists and for-profit arts businesses; providing a framework to guide the City’s future cultural and economic growth, via the 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan; marketing the City’s cultural assets to a worldwide audience; and presenting high-quality, free and affordable cultural programs for residents and visitors.
The Black McDonald’s Operators Association
The Black McDonald’s Operators Association (BMOA) is a membership organization comprised of 14 Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana-area McDonald’s restaurant owners. While contributing to the success of McDonald’s as the world’s leading food service retailer, BMOA members are also committed to exhibiting leadership, supporting education and developing partnerships within the African-American communities and various other communities that they serve.