Global sounds and local eats for the World Music Festival
BY MARY HOULIHAN | For Sun-Times Media September 11, 2013 5:56PM
Janusz Prusinowski Trio
WORLD MUSIC FESTIVAL
♦ Through Sept. 22
♦ Various times and locations
♦ (312) 744-3316;
Updated: October 15, 2013 6:26AM
Are you ready for a free trip around the world? A musical one, that is.
World Music Festival Chicago 2013, organized by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, has returned with more than 70 performances by a variety of musicians and singers performing in venues around the city. Here are a few picks — and to make the evening even more culturally defined, we offer dinner suggestions from Chicago’s equally diverse lineup of restaurants.
Amjad Ali Khan
6 p.m. Sept. 13 at Pritzker Pavilion, Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue. The son of the storied sarod maestro Hafiz Ali Khan, Amjad Ali Khan ranks as the greatest living sarod player in Indian classical music. He’s joined here by Amaan Ali Khan and Ayaan Ali Khan plus Debashish Bhattacharya & Family. For dinner try: Indian Garden, 2546 W. Devon Ave. (773) 338-2929.
Plena Libre with AfriCaribe
6 p.m. dance lesson, 7:30 p.m. show, Sept. 13 at Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park, 601 S. Michigan Ave. The Puerto Rican ensemble Plena Libre melds the island’s native plena music with touches of jazz, pop and other Afro-Caribbean genres. AfriCaribe has mastered Puerto Rico’s propulsive bomba rhythms. For dinner try: Borinquen, 1720 N. California Ave. (773) 227-6038.
Cedric Watson & Bijou Creole
9 p.m. Sept. 13 at Old Town School of Folk Music, 4545 N. Lincoln Ave. Cajun and zydeco traditions are in Watson’s original tunes and classics from Boozoo Chavis, Michael Doucet and Dennis McGee. For dinner try: Heaven on Seven, 600 N. Michigan Ave., 2nd Floor. (312) 280-7774.
7 p.m. Sept. 14 at Old Town School of Folk Music, 4545 N. Lincoln Ave., followed by Sidi Toure with Leila Gobi at 8:30 p.m. Mali’s annual Festival au Desert was canceled in 2013 due to the country’s political instability. So the artists bring their music to the world. Check the schedule for more by Malian artists. For dinner try: Yassa African Restaurant, 716 E. 79th St. (773) 488-5599.
Nicolae Feraru & His Gypsy Band plus Krar Collective
3 p.m. Sept. 15 at Pritzker Pavilion, Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue. Nicolae Feraru performs the Gypsy traditional music he learned from his father and other lautari, or minstrels, from his native Romania. He plays the tambal mic (Romanian dulcimer). For dinner try: Little Bucharest Bistro, 3661 N. Elston Ave. (773) 604-8500.
7:30 p.m. Sept. 15 at National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th St. Los Cenzontles (The Mockingbirds) is a California band influenced by Mexican regional folk music such as traditional mariachi, banda, ranchera and norteno. For dinner try: Nuevo Leon, 1515 W. 18th St. (312) 421-1517.
8:30 p.m. Sept. 21 at Mayne Stage, 1328 W. Morse Ave. Colombia’s Alejandra Ortiz and Argentina’s Luis Maurette use electronic textures and beats and blend them with melodies from their respective South American cultures. For dinner try: Las Tablas, 2942 N. Lincoln. (773) 871-2414.
Janusz Prusinowski Trio
2 p.m. Sept. 22 at Randolph Square, Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph St. The trio’s music is rooted in the traditional village sounds of central Poland especially the centuries-old dance style called the mazurka. Also performing: Andreas Kapsalis & Goran Ivanovic and Paulinho Garcia. For dinner try: Staropolska, 5249 W. Belmont Ave. (773) 736-5230.
Mary Houlihan is a Chicago freelance writer.