Many entertainment options during 2016’s Pygmalion

Peter Floess

Staff Writer

pygmalion festival

2016 Pygmalion Schedule

The 12th-annual Pygmalion Festival, is going on at various venues throughout Champaign-Urbana this weekend.

Pygmalion features music, poetry, a crafts and vintage goods market, a technology section, and a foods festival.

Attendees can expect a wide variety of touring and local bands during the festival that will be spread out among Champaign-Urbana’s venues. Well-known groups such as Future Islands, Vince Staples, and Wolf Parade will all be performing.

C-U-local R&B-soul-funk group Church Booty, who now are based out of Chicago, played for the second time this year at Pygmalion last weekend.

Daniel Hinze, saxophonist for Church Booty, says their hometown has not lost that very quality.

“[D]espite being based out of Chicago now, coming back to C-U still feels like home,” Hinze said.

Hinze praised Pygmalion for its eclectic style and ability to bring together both home-grown bands and those from far and wide.

“Pygmalion is unique in how it blends big national names with local acts so thoroughly. I can’t imagine another place in which we’d get to fit into the schedule like that,” he said. “A lot of newer music is finally coming together for us, so it’ll be exciting to share some fresh sounds.”

Despite being set to play at Chicago’s Bottom Lounge on Sept. 22, some of the members of Church Booty will perform as part of the act of Tara Terra, a C-U-based alternative band, on Saturday, Sept. 24 at 4:30 p.m.

This is Tara Terra guitarist Colin Althaus’ third year playing at Pygmalion. He says the festival appeals to him in the diverse groups of people who come out to experience the event.

“[I] love how Pygmalion brings the community of Champaign-Urbana together. That’s seriously my favorite part about it—you see both students and town folk there, young and old, musically inclined and musically appreciative,” Althaus said. “For Tara Terra, that means that the crowd is unique and fun, in that we get to appeal to a broader range of people than most shows. That’s what I’m looking forward to the most.”

Tara Terra is perhaps best known for their song “Daughter” featured on their album of the same name. This song, along with others,, have been played and heard over the airwaves of local radio.

Numerous prominent acts have yet to play at Pygmalion, including Wolf Parade, Louis the Child, Elsinore, and Parkland’s own The Inn Keepers. The full lineup and play times can be found, and tickets can be purchased, on the festival’s website, thepygmalionfestival.com.

The technology section of Pygmalion will feature “TED”-style talks along with interactive demonstrations with panels and student recruitment.

The main speaker of the tech event is biologist and neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky, an expert and popular author on the subject of stress in human societies. Sapolsky will be speaking at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts on Thursday, Sept. 22 at 6:30 p.m.

Other speakers at the tech event include writer Ernest Baker, on the subject of social media, and Nancy Einhart, as an editor of PopSugar Network, an online lifestyle and entertainment publisher. Champaign Mayor Deborah Frank Feinen spoke on Wednesday on the status of fiber-optic internet in the city.

Tech demos will be held by C-U’s resident AAA game developer Volition Deep Silver, the University of Illinois’ Virtual Reality Laboratory, sensory input-capable and brain-controlled prosthetic hand developer Psyonic, and Champaign’s own worldwide software company Wolfram Research, among many others.

The headliner of the literature section is essayist Eula Biss. Her books, On Immunity: An Inoculation and Notes from No Man’s Land: American Essays have won many awards. Biss is speaking at the Krannert Center for Performing Arts on Saturday, Sept. 24 at 4 p.m. Other literature guests include poet Tyehimba Jess of the College of Staten Island and columnist Neil Steinberg of the Chicago Sun­-Times.

The craft section of Pygmalion will be at The Accord Outdoor Annex on Friday, Sept. 23 from 4-10 p.m. and Saturday, Sept. 24 from 12-8 p.m. Local crafters and vendors will be there, selling unique items. This part of the festival is free to the public.

The food section was also at The Accord Outdoor Annex on Sept. 16-17. Local restaurateurs and vendors sold different food items.

2016’s Pygmalion Festival runs until Saturday, Sept. 24. The complete source of information regarding the festival is its website, thepygmalionfestival.com.