Those looking forward to spreading out a blanket and listening to a concert will find a variety of acts to choose from at the 2018 Lakeside Pavilion Free Outdoor Summer Series at the College of DuPage's McAninich Arts Center.
"We always try to change it up a little bit," center Director Diana Martinez said. "We try to appeal to different generations and provide a nice variety of acts. I'm looking for great music, but I'm also looking for a sense of theatricality."
The McAninch Arts Center is located at 425 Fawell Blvd. on COD's Glen Ellyn campus. For the fifth consecutive year, the Friday evening Pop Music Series opens at 7:30 p.m. July 13 with a concert by acclaimed Chicago-based Beatles tribute band American English.
"American English has become a fan favorite tradition," Martinez said. "I think the crowd would revolt if I didn't have them open the season every year. But it's definitely a show, with costumes."
New Philharmonic, a professional orchestra in residence at the MAC, will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. July 20, followed by tribute band Unraveling The Wilburys, which celebrates the catalogues of Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, at 7:30 p.m. July 27.
"It's kind of an era of music we haven't really touched on before, so I'm excited about that," Martinez said.
Other acts include "The Piano Men: A Tribute to Billy Joel & Elton John" at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 3 and MAC favorite Rick Michel at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 10 with "My Sinatra," his homage to Frank Sinatra.
"'The Piano Men' is a spectacular show," Martinez said. "These guys are the best. You cannot find two better guys [Craig Meyer and Donnie Kehr] to pay tribute to their music."
The summer series will run from July 12 through Aug. 10 and include a Thursday evening Family Movie Series and Thursday evening WDCB Live Jazz Concert Series. All Friday evening concerts will feature an opening performance at 7:15 p.m. by one of this year’s finalists of the Apollo Live COD Student Talent Competition.
Seating for evening events begins at 6 p.m. There will be no access to the Lakeside Pavilion grounds prior to that time. Parking is always free.
The 2018 Thursday Evening Family Movie Series will feature the family film “Willie Wonka
and the Chocolate Factory” on July 12 and Disney’s Academy Award-winner “The Lion King” on July 19. Admission is free, and showings begin at dusk, about 8 p.m.
The WDCB Live Jazz Concert Series will kick off July 26 with a performance by the acclaimed Chicago Jazz Orchestra, with a special guest to be announced. Frank Russell & The Chicago Power All-Star Band on Aug. 2 will perform “A Tribute to Bass Guitar in Jazz,” featuring special guests Corey Wilkes, Henry Johnson, Robert Irving III and Dee Alexander, and a performance by the Joe Louis Walker Band closes the series Aug. 9.
Admission to WDCB Live Jazz concerts is free, and all performances begin at 7:30 p.m.
All concert and movie events will take place rain or shine. In the case of inclement weather, concerts will be moved indoors to the Belushi Performance Hall, and notice will be posted on the MAC’s website, AtTheMAC.org.
If you go
WHAT: 2018 Lakeside Pavilion Free Outdoor Summer Series
WHEN: July 12 through Aug. 10
WHERE: McAninch Arts Center, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn