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Prepare to bust a move with the Chicago SummerDance 2017 lineup

Zach Long
Written by
Zach Long

Time to start practicing your moves. The 2017 Chicago SummerDance lineup is here, and it's packed with opportunities to learn about different types of dancing while enjoying live music. As usual, the bulk of SummerDance will take place at the festival's home in the Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park, but this year guests will also be able to enjoy dancing events at eight neighborhood parks throughout Chicago, including Garfield Park, Ping Tom Memorial Park and Humboldt Park. 

New to this year's festivities is the SummerDance-Off, which will search for the city's best amateur footwork and steppin’ dancers through a series of competitions taking place in various Chicago parks on July 8, 15, 22 and 29. The winners of each competition will compete onstage at the new SummerDance Celebration in Millennium Park, a day-long festival on August 26 that will include performances from professional dancers, a dance party at Cloud Gate and circle dance lessons on the Great Lawn.

If you're new to SummerDance, here's how it works: the first hour of each event is typically a dance lesson led by an instructor, allowing you to learn some steps with other beginners. After the dance lesson, the live music begins and you can show off your best moves (or simply sit back and watch other dancers). Genres represented on this year's lineup include swing, Motown, cumbia, salsa, ballroom dancing, tango and even marching band music (led by local marching act Mucca Pazza).

Take a look at the complete SummerDance lineup below:


Friday, June 3, 12:30–9pm
SummerDance Preview at the 606 Block Party (Humboldt Boulevard)
The Volo Bogtrotters (Contra + Square Dance), Sons of Susan (Swing), Mr. Mojo and the Bayou Gypsies (Zydeco), Cumbanchero: A Big Band Tribute to Rafael Hernandez (Salsa + Cumbia)
Friday, June 23, 6–9:30pm
The Outcast Jazz Band (Big Band Swing), Margot Toppen and Riley Wimes, Jr. (East Coast Swing)
Saturday, June 24, 6–9:30pm
Motown + R&B
Lynne Jordan + The Shivers (Motown + R&B), Dawud + Lura Shareef (Chicago Bop)
Sunday, June 25, 4–7pm
Alma Afrobeat Ensemble (Afrobeat), Idy Ciss (Traditional West African Dance)
Friday, June 30, 6–9:30pm
Marching band music
Mucca Pazza (A Little Marching Band)



Saturday, July 1, 6–9:30pm
Salsa and Mambo
Luis Palermo + Brasa All Stars (Salsa), Dance Academy of Salsa (Mambo)
Sunday, July 2, 4–7pm
Terrance Simien + The Zydeco Experience (Zydeco), Idy Ciss (Traditional West African Dance)
Wednesday, July 5, 6–9pm
Irish folk music
Bua (Irish Folk Music), Trinity Irish Dance (Irish Folk Dancing)
Thursday, July 6, 6–9pm
Steppin’ – Tribute to Herb Kent
DJ Eric “ET” Taylor (Chicago Steppin’), Majestic Gents (Chicago Steppin’)
Friday, July 7, 6–9pm
House music
Steve ‘Miggedy’ Maestro
Saturday, July 8, 2–5pm
Footwork SummerDance-off (Garfield Park Golden Dome, 100 Central Park Ave)
Saturday, July 8, 6–9pm
Orquesta El Macabeo (Salsa), Latin Rhythms (Salsa)
Sunday, July 9, 4–7pm
Lawrence Peters Outfit (Honky-Tonk Country), Jeffrey Cannon and Meg Kindelin (Country Two-Step, Waltz)
Thursday, July 13, 6–9pm
Bomba (Humboldt Park Boathouse, 1301 N Sacramento Ave)
Bomba con Buya (Plena + Bomba), Ivelisse Diaz with La Escuelita Bombera de Corazon (Plena + Bomba)
Friday, July 14, 6–9:30pm
The ERA (Footwork)
Saturday, July 15, 2–5pm
Steppin’ SummerDance-off (Washington Park Refectory, 5531 S Martin Luther King Dr)
Saturday, July 15, 6–9:30pm
Timba Brava (Timba Salsa), Chicago Dance (Salsa)
Sunday, July 16, 4–7 p.m.
Italian Folk Music
Newpoli (Italian Folk Music + Dance)
Thursday, July 20, 6–9pm
Salsa + Bachata (Ping Tom Memorial Park, 300 W 19th St)
El Caobo (Salsa, Mambo, Bachata), Denita Inez & Desueño (Salsa + Bachata)
Friday, July 21, 6–9:30pm
The Fat Babies (‘20s and ‘30s Jazz and Swing), Big City Swing (East Coast Swing)
Saturday, July 22, 2–5 p.m.
Footwork SummerDance-off (Hamilton Park Cultural Center, 513 W 72nd St)
Saturday, July 22, 6–9:30pm
Salsa + Mambo + Cha-cha
Charanga Tropical (Salsa with Strings), Mixed Motion Art (Mambo, Cha-cha)
Sunday, July 23, 4–7pm
May I Have this Dance Presents Ballroom, Nino DiGiulio (Cha-cha + Waltz)
Thursday, July 27, 6–9pm
Salsa (Humboldt Park Boathouse, 1301 N Sacramento Ave)
Aguzate (Vintage Salsa DJ set), Dance Academy of Salsa (Salsa, Cha-cha)
Friday, July 28, 6–9:30pm
Blues + West Coast Swing
The Cash Box Kings (Chicago Blues), May I Have This Dance (West Coast Swing)
Saturday, July 29, 2–5pm
Steppin’ SummerDance-off (Hamilton Park Cultural Center, 513 W. 72nd St.)
Saturday, July 29, 6–9:30pm
Gerardo Contino y Los Habaneros (Cuban Son, Salsa), Arthur Murray Dance Center (Salsa)
Sunday, July 30, 4–7pm
Teddy Lee Orchestra (Ballroom), Fred Astaire Dance Studio - West Loop (Fox-Trot, Rumba)



Thursday, August 3, 6–9pm
Salsa (Portage Park, 4100 N Long Ave)
Carpacho y Su Super Combo (Colombian, Salsa), Denita Inez & Desueño (Salsa)
Thursday, August 10, 6–9:30pm
Swing (Jackson Park Grove 6B, 1971 E Hayes Dr)
Petra van Nuis Quintet (‘20s, ‘30s and ‘40s Classic Swing), Dancing with Class (East Coast Swing)
Friday, August 11, 6–9pm
House music
Tyree Cooper
Saturday, August 12, 6–9:30pm
National Steppers Society (Steppin’), Kenneth Watkins (Steppin’)
Sunday, August 13, 4–7pm
The Main Stem Orchestra (‘30s & ‘40s Pre-Bop era Swing), Kasper Dance Studio (Swing/Jive)
Thursday, August 17, 6–9 p.m.
Salsa (Portage Park, 4100 N Long Ave)
Orquesta Charangueo (Afro-Cuban Jazz, ChaChachá, Cuban Son and Mambo), May I Have This Dance (Salsa)
Friday, August 18, 6–9:30pm
Kizomba + Bachata
DJ Just Jacob (Kizomba, Modern Bachata), Latin Street Dancing (Kizomba, Bachata)
Saturday, August 19, 6–9:30pm
SONORAMA DJ Collective (Cumbia), Latin Rhythms (Cumbia)
Sunday, August 20, 4–7pm
The Revelers (Cajun, Zydeco + Swamp Pop), Louie Stallone + Monica Vachlon (Cajun Two-Step + Waltz)
Thursday, August 24, 6–9pm
Salsa + Cha-cha (Willye B. White Park, 1610 Howard St)
Angel d’Cuba (Salsa), Latin Street Dance (Salsa)
Friday, August 25, 6–9:30pm
Line dancing
DJ Boolumaster (Classic House, Disco), The Thomas Twins (Line Dancing)
Saturday, August 26, noon–10pm
SummerDance Celebration (Millennium Park, 201 E Randolph St)
Sunday, August 27, 4–7pm
DJ Naveen Kumar (Bollywood), Bollywood Groove (Bollywood)



Friday, September 1, 6–9pm
Dwayne “Diz” Washington
Saturday, September 2, 6–9:30pm
Argentine Tango
Redwood Tango Trio (Argentine Tango), Tango 21 (Argentine Tango)
Sunday, September 3, 6–9:30pm
Contra + Square dance
Volo Bogtrotters (Country and Square Dance), Paul Tyler (Caller)
Thursday, September 7, 6–9pm
Swing (Ping Tom Memorial Park, 300 W 19th St)
The Flat Cats (Jump Blues, Swing), Fred Astaire Dance Studio - West Loop (Jitterbug)
Friday, September 8, 6–9:30pm
Underground System (Afrobeat), Kimosha P. Murphy (Dances from the African Diaspora)
Saturday, September 9, 6–9:30pm
Argentine Tango
Duo Scofano-Minetti (Argentine Tango), American Tango Institute (Argentine Tango)
Sunday, September 10, 4–7pm
Feufollet (Cajun), Louie Stallone + Monica Vachlon (Cajun Two-Step + Waltz)
Thursday, September 14, 6–9pm
Bhangra (Willye B. White Park, 1610 Howard St)
Kalapriya presents Bhangra Blowout with DJ + Live Dhol, Kalapriya (Bhangra)
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