Harris Theater announces second annual
Summer Jazz concert
Tickets on sale now for rooftop set by saxophonist Lakecia Benjamin and SoulSquad, leading up to 2019 Chicago Jazz Festival
(CHICAGO, IL) – The Harris Theater has announced the second of its annual summer rooftop concerts, extending its diverse music offerings into the summer months and expanding opportunities for audiences to experience the performing arts in non-traditional formats at an accessible price point.
Building on the success of the popular Mix at Six series – 6 p.m. performances with an informal atmosphere, food trucks, and opportunities to connect directly with performers – the summer rooftop concert will feature New York native Lakecia Benjamin and her band SoulSquad in a 90-minute set on the Harris Theater rooftop, against the backdrop of Millennium Park. The inaugural rooftop concert was headlined by Chicago’s Mike Reed’s People Places & Things and drew an audience of nearly 800.
Lakecia Benjamin, one of NPR’s “Women to Watch,” is a saxophonist, vocalist, bandleader, and educator. Born and raised in New York City in Washington Heights, she first began playing saxophone at Fiorello LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts before attending the prestigious New School jazz program. Praised for her versatility and “cyclonic energy” (Downbeat), Benjamin has performed with respected jazz artists including Jimmy Heath, Joanne Brackeen, Charenee Wade, and Harry Belafonte, as well as hip-hop and R&B artists including Pete Rock, DJ Premiere, Missy Elliott, Stevie Wonder, and Alicia Keys.
“I first saw Lakecia Benjamin perform a late set as part of Jazz at Lincoln Center,” said Patricia Barretto, President and CEO of the Harris Theater. “I was captivated by her mix of intensity and a sound that is fun and energetic – I knew that she would be perfect for our Summer Jazz series. The fact that she is one of very few woman bandleaders and an incredibly inspiring artist and educator makes us even prouder to present her on our rooftop stage.”
Tickets for this event are on sale now online at www.harristheaterchicago.org/tickets/2018-2019-season/mix–summer-jazz and through the Harris Theater box office, and are open to all ages. Tickets are $15 each for standing room or lawn access. General admission seating is available for $25 per ticket.
To purchase tickets or request a brochure, contact the box office at 312.334.7777 or visit in person at 205 E. Randolph. Hours are noon to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday and performance days.
Lakecia Benjamin and SoulSquad
Aug 28, 2019 | 6:00PM (doors open at 5:00PM)
Harris Theater Rooftop
205 East Randolph Street
Saxophonist and bandleader Lakecia Benjamin, one of NPR’s “Women to Watch,” brings her electric stage presence and fiery sax work to the Harris Theater for the first time. Benjamin and her band SoulSquad will bring their dance floor-friendly grooves to the Theater’s second annual rooftop jazz concert, overlooking beautiful Millennium Park.
Lakecia Benjamin – sax, vocals
Melodie Nicholson – vocals
Shelly Spruill – bass
Eric Brown – drums
Devone Allison – keyboards
This performance is made possible by Sterling Bay, 2019-20 Harris Theater Season Sponsor.
Harris Theater for Music and Dance
The Harris Theater is Chicago’s primary residence for music and dance, connecting diverse audiences with outstanding artists from across the city, the nation, and the world. The Theater’s activities fall under three central strategies: support for local music and dance companies, presentation of national and international artists, and community engagement and educational programs. Since opening its doors in 2003, the Theater has earned national recognition as a distinctive model for collaboration, performance, and artistic advancement.
Today, the Harris Theater’s original group of 12 resident companies has grown to include 30 diverse music and dance companies, and its Harris Theater Presents series has featured world-renowned artists and ensembles including Mikhail Baryshnikov, Batsheva Dance, Joshua Bell, English National Ballet, Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the Monteverdi Choir, Angélique Kidjo, and Paris Opéra Ballet. The Harris Theater’s community engagement initiatives build bridges between artists and community members, providing master classes, artist talks, and free tickets for more than 35 partner organizations throughout Chicago.