Pre-Release Book Buzz

June 25, 2009

The word is out and anticipation is rising. There is much talk and excitement surrounding the release of our new book Sounds of Chicago's Lakefront.

New Book Celebrates the Civic and Cultural Treasure that is Grant Park

Chicago Tribune, John von Rhein, June 30, 2009

Who would have guessed that a plan by labor czar James C. Petrillo to put Chicago musicians back to work during the Great Depression would remain a thriving part of the city's cultural life well into the early 21st Century?

The storied legacy of the Grant Park Music Festival comes alive in a handsome new commemorative book, Sounds of Chicago's Lakefront: A Celebration of the Grant Park Music Festival (216 pages, Chicago's Books Press). The hardcover history was commissioned by the festival to commemorate its 75th season. Its release Wednesday coincides with a program that evening in Millennium Park re-creating the first Grant Park symphony concert July 1, 1935. Read the full article at

Don’t Wait, Buy Your Copy Now!

Adaptistration, Drew McManus, June 18, 2009

According to the Grant Park Music Festival’s (GPMF) website, describes itself as “The nation’s only free, municipally funded, summer-long, classical music series, the Grant Park Music Festival has been a key part of the lakefront’s vibrant history.” That means it is a government sponsored, autonomous orchestra; yes, an organization thought to only exist mostly in Europe has been around right under our US noses for the past 75 years. To celebrate their 75th anniversary, the GPMF commissioned a publication that I was lucky enough to get my hands on a few days before it is officially released. Read the full article at

Music Festival Celebrates a Classic 75 Years

The Northwest Indiana and Illinois Times, Walter Skiba, Thursday, June 18, 2009

It all began with the march from Wagner’s opera “Tannhauser” on July 1, 1935. Chicago’s Grant Park Music Festival, America’s only municipally funded free outdoor classical concert series, continues its 75th anniversary season this weekend with works by Bernstein, Shostakovich and Mussorgsky. This season is also the 10th for principal conductor Carlos Kalmar, who has shaped the world-class Grant Park Orchestra into a tight yet extremely adaptable ensemble.

Tony Macaluso, Director of GPMF marketing and patron services, tells of the festival’s beginnings in the new 250-page book Sounds of Chicago's Lakefront: A Celebration of the Grant Park Music Festival....
“Built on a shoestring budget in just three weeks in 1931 for a shorter series of concerts,” the original unnamed bandshell lasted until the Petrillo Bandshell opened in 1978. The visually stunning and acoustically top-of-the-line Jay Pritzker Pavilion took the GPMF to new heights in 2004. Perhaps the most memorable concerts took place in July 1958 with pianist Van Cliburn. His two concerts attracted a total of 100,000 to 150,000 people, Macaluso says. Read the full article at