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Datebook: Make Music Normal Returns To Uptown

Red Scarves.jpg
Jeffrey Smudde
The Red Scarves perform at Make Music Normal in 2018.

The sounds of great music will once again bounce around Uptown Normal as Make Music Normal returns after a one-year COVID hiatus.

Uptown’s two-day music festival is set for Sept. 10-11. The lineup once again showcases acts from McLean County or with a unique connection to the community. That includes Chicago Farmer & the Field Notes, V8 Vast Change, and Dan Hubbard with Matthew Pittman. Several artists will make their Make Music Normal premieres, including Darius and Emily Antonacci.

“What you’re going to see is a really, really diverse mix of artists from this region that we think showcase what we’re up to, what this musical scene is now, and what a great time it is to be a part of it,” said Adam Fox, civic arts manager for the Town of Normal.

See the full lineup and schedule on Facebook. The festival is part of the WGLT Summer Concert Satellite Series Presented by CEFCU.

Make Music Normal—a free, all-ages festival—will look a little different this year, due to COVID. The footprint is smaller, with four stages instead of six or seven. And they’ll be more spread out across Uptown.

“It’s been a process this year. We looked at a lot of different ways that we could deliver the things people love about Make Music Normal—the great sense of engagement, the sense of community, the sense of excitement of having so many stages active at one time. While also trying to respect that space and comfort levels and capacity were going to be unknowns,” Fox said.

They’ve worked hard to maintain a participatory aspect to the event, even if COVID protocols don’t allow for, say, an instrument petting zoo. Instead, an audience might be asked to learn some choreography from someone guiding them from the stage.

There will also be a COVID vaccination clinic on-site for those who still need their shot.

Make Music Normal runs from 5-10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 10, and 1-10 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11.

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