A world of music at 36th Folk Festivals Traditional music from all over the world will be featured at the 36th annual University of Chicago Folk Festival from Friday, Feb. 2, through Sunday, Feb. 4. The festival is sponsored by the University of Chicago Folklore Society.
Three concerts in Mandel Hall will feature music from Mexico, the Basque Country and Ireland as well as American blues, bluegrass and Cajun music and fiddling in several regional styles. Free workshops, jam sessions and dancing will take place in Ida Noyes Hall from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 3, and Sunday, Feb. 4.
The festival, which has long prided itself on presenting some of the finest players of "old-time" American music, will present West Virginia country singer Ginny Hawker in a duo with fiddler and singer Tracy Schwarz; Schwarz will also perform in the Cajun ensemble with Kristi Guillory, Horace Trahan & Friends. Guillory, who plays guitar and accordion, was named the 1994 Cajun French Music Association's Female Vocalist of the Year. The ensemble will be joined by Charlie and John Terr of the Chicago Cajun Aces. Bridging the gap between old-time and bluegrass music will be fiddler Pappy Sherrill & the Hired Hands, and bringing the sounds of the Appalachian Mountains culture to the festival will be the Morris Brothers.
Other highlights will include the legendary blues singing and harmonica playing of Billy Boy Arnold, accompanied by longtime Hyde Park bluesmen Dave Waldman and Johnny Burgin, and the solo acoustic blues of Jack Owens and the gospel singing of the Barrett Sisters.
Among the international music artists are the Irish group Solas, whose music was featured on the soundtrack of the film The Brothers McMullen; Basquing in Sound with Joseba Tapia, who will bring to the festival for the first time the exotic sounds of the Basque Country of northern Spain and southwestern France; and Sones de Mexico, a traditional folk ensemble that performs music and dance in a style indigenous to subtropical Mexico.
The concert lineup is as follows:
Friday, Feb. 2, 8:15 p.m.: Morris Brothers; Solas; Basquing in Sound with Joseba Tapia; Ginny Hawker & Tracy Schwarz; Kristi Guillory, Horace Trahan & Friends; Jack Owens.
Saturday, Feb. 3, 7:30 p.m.: Pappy Sherrill & the Hired Hands; Sones de Mexico; Billy Boy Arnold; Kristi Guillory, Horace Trahan & Friends; Basquing in Sound with Joseba Tapia; Morris Brothers.
Sunday, Feb. 4, 6:15 p.m.: Barrett Sisters; Jack Owens; Solas; Ginny Hawker & Tracy Schwarz; Pappy Sherrill & the Hired Hands.
All concerts will be held in Mandel Hall. Artists and performance orders are subject to change. Tickets are $14, $7 for students and children, and are available at the Reynolds Club box office or by phone (702-7300) from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Tickets will also be sold at the box office for two hours before each concert. For more information, call the Folklore Society at 702-9793.