Chilean group Inti-Illimani kicks off Friday Night Concert Series

BY DEVYN YOUNG | MAY 14, 2015 5:00 AM

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“Once the music starts, the Ped Mall really comes to life,” said Lisa Barnes, the executive director of Summer of the Arts and the Friday Night Concert Series.

Inti-Illimani will perform Friday night on the Pedestrian Mall Fountain Stage, located outside the Sheraton Hotel. The concert will begin at 6:30 p.m., although people typically begin setting up lawn chairs around 6 p.m.

Inti-Illimani is a Latin American music ensemble that focuses on indie and folk music, with baroque influences. The group originated in Chile in 1967 but was exiled to Europe in 1973, when a U.S.-backed coup installed Gen. Augusto Pinochet, who reportedly ordered his army to kill many artists. Inti-Illimani did not tour Chile again until 1988. Some members of the band have remained since 1967, but many have continued into their current lineup of performers today.

“We are thrilled to kick off the year with Inti-Illimani, thanks to a partnership with Hancher,” Barnes said.

The Friday Night Concert Series is an Iowa City tradition. Each Friday throughout the summer, a different musical group will perform on the Ped Mall at 6:30 p.m. The concerts will start Friday and run through Sept. 11.

“Each year, the music-selection committee does a great job scheduling many returning favorites while also featuring bands new to the area or from just outside the Iowa City area,” Barnes said. “We hope the public will take advantage of these free concerts to come together and enjoy the opportunity to experience the arts.”

Hancher Programing Director Jacob Yarrow said getting Inti-Illimani to Iowa City has been more than a year in the making.

“We’ve been talking to the band for about 15 months,” Yarrow said. “They will be doing a number of projects around the state of Iowa, including performing at three local elementary schools.”

Yarrow, who has known about Inti-Illimani for a long time, said he is excited to have it perform in Iowa City.

“Its show is always really fun, high-energy, and exciting,” he said. “It brings a Latin flair to the Ped Mall.”

Where: Pedestrian Mall Weatherdance Fountain Stage 
Time: 6:30 p.m. Friday
Admission: Free

To see the lineup for the Friday Night Concert Series, visit www.summerofthearts.org

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