Ear Taxi Festival 2021

  • Chicago, Illinois
  • September 15, 2021 - October 4, 2021

September 15-October 4, 2021
Venues across Chicago & Virtually

Ear Taxi Festival, a presentation of New Music Chicago, actively promotes Chicago as a global leader of extraordinary musical and cultural innovation. The full schedule of events for 2021 takes place from Wednesday, September 15 through Monday, October 4 in venues across Chicago and virtually. Ear Taxi Festival celebrates new, contemporary classical, experimental, creative, electronic, and other kinds of music and sound-practice that are composed by, improvised by, and performed in Chicago by Chicagoans. This year’s theme, “HEAR CHICAGO,” is a call to engage with the vast multiplicity of styles and traditions that constitutes Chicago’s expansive musical identity, focusing on musicians of color as a significant part of the city’s complex history. It expresses Ear Taxi Festival’s firm belief in the vitality of Chicago’s BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) musicians as a significant part of the city’s complex history. As society takes steps to heal from the multiple tragedies it is currently experiencing, as well as its centuries-long legacy of injustice, inequity, colonialism, and violence, it is most importantly an invitation to challenge, collaborate, and change together as artists and listeners. Ear Taxi Festival remains committed to doing the steadfast work necessary to progress towards a just society.

New Music USA will participate in two panels:

Panel 1: Wednesday, September 29, 2021 at 4:30pm-6pm

What are the components of a thriving ecosystem for new music?

Panelists: David Skidmore (Third Coast Percussion), Olivia Junell (Experimental Sound Studio), Renee Baker (composer/artist), and Erin R. Harkey (City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs & Special Events). Moderator: Vanessa Reed (President and CEO, New Music USA).

Panel 2: Thursday, September 30, 2021 at 6pm-7:30pm

Dissolving Paradigms: Aspiring Towards a Free and Inclusive Flow of Ideas, Influences,
and Innovation in the Arts

Moderator: LaRob K. Payton, Ear Taxi Festival Director of Community Engagement

Panelists: Tomeka Reid (Cellist, Composer, Educator), Howard Reich (Author, Filmmaker, former Chicago Tribune Critic), Adam Zanolini (Executive Director of Elastic Arts, Multi-instrumentalist, Ethnomusicologist, and Arts Organizer), and Aja Burrell Wood (Managing Director, Berklee Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice and Trustee of New Music USA).