Monday, September 29, 2014

Great Chicago Fire Festival is HERE This Saturday #ChiILPicksList #ChiFireFest


ChiIL Mama's ChiIL Picks List 

Here at ChiIL Mama we're way beyond stoked to see the inaugural Great Chicago Fire Festival. ChiIL Mama will be there... will YOU?! It's FREE, family friendly fun and we can't wait. Check back with ChiIL Mama & ChiIL Live Shows like we vote in Chi, IL... early and often. 

*We're working on setting up an exclusive video interview with one of the engineers who is also a Chicago mama with 2 young kids, catching some behind the scenes build shots and recapping the event with a photo filled feature as well.*  

Television and film actors Jesse Spencer and Taylor Kinney, both stars of the hit NBC drama “Chicago Fire, will lend their heat to the inaugural Great Chicago Fire Festival, the free spectacle of fire on the Chicago River set to take place Saturday, October 4. The Great Chicago Fire Festival, celebrating Chicago’s grit, greatness and renewal following the historic Great Chicago Fire of 1871, is presented by Redmoon with the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and Chicago Park District. Activity takes place between the State Street and Columbus Drive bridges in the heart of downtown beginning at 8 pm. 


WORLDS COLLIDE ALERT: Here at ChiIL Mama, we've covered Redmoon's fabulous spectacles since their inception decades ago. We also have ties to the NBC drama “Chicago Fire,as well. Their Costume Supervisor is a long time friend of ours. My husband got to know her well over 20 years ago, working on movies together, then our kids ended up at the same Montessori school for the past 10 years. Her MIL is an amazing artist who painted David Bowie numerous times, as one of his inner circle, so there's another few degrees of separation on our MCA Bowie exhibit coverage. Ah what a small town Chicago can be for the 3rd largest city in the nation!

Kinney and Spencer will ignite the festivities – literally – as they light one of 15 massive “Fire Cauldrons” that will be lowered from bridges to watercraft waiting on the Chicago River below. From there, an elaborate “Grand Spectacle” performance will unfold as the watercraft then ferry the flames out to three moored platforms, where giant “Fire Sculptures” will be set ablaze, transforming to reveal three different symbolic cores. Some 400 different performers and singers will participate in the event, which culminates with a choreographed fireworks display designed by Las Vegas-based company Pyrotechnico. The Great Chicago Fire Festival is completely free and no tickets are required.

Spencer stars as Matthew Casey, a strong intuitive Lieutenant who leads the Truck Company and is unwavering in his commitment to the job, in NBC’s drama “Chicago Fire.” An Australian native, Spencer made his American television debut in the critically acclaimed series “House,” playing Dr. Robert Chase opposite Hugh Laurie for all of the show's eight seasons until the series ended in May 2012. Spencer's film credits include a starring role in "Uptown Girls" with Brittany Murphy, the biopic "Swimming Upstream" with Geoffrey Rush and Judy Davis, as well as Spike Lee's independent feature "The Girl Is in Trouble." He has worked extensively in the U.K. and Australia, both in television and theater. He starred in the acclaimed BBC drama "Death in Holy Orders" and has had starring roles in the BBC adaptation of "Lorna Doone" and Hallmark's "Stranded." He began his career starring in the long-running Australian soap, "Neighbours."

Kinney stars as Kelly Severide, a brash Lieutenant who runs the Rescue Squad with an unflappable veneer, in NBC’s drama “Chicago Fire.” On television, Kinney has a variety of credits including a series regular role in NBC’s ‘Trauma” and the recurring role of Mason Lockwood on “The Vampire Diaries.” He starred in the Michael Patrick King pilot for NBC, “A Mann’s World,” opposite Don Johnson, and he has appeared on such shows as “Breakout Kings,” Castle,” “Shameless,” “Rizzoli & Isles,” “Bones” and “CSI: NY.” Kinney recently starred alongside Cameron Diaz and Lesley Mann in the 2014 Fox comedy hit, “The Other Woman,” directed by Nick Cassavettes and will appear in the following films next year: "Rock the Kasbah" directed by Barry Levinson and the independent "Food" directed by Daryl Wein. Additional big screen credits include Kathryn Bigelow’s “Zero Dark Thirty.”

“Chicago Fire” is produced by Wolf Films in association with Universal Television. 

The Great Chicago Fire Festival is in partnership with The City of Chicago, Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and The Chicago Park District, presented by BMO Harris Bank, The Pritzker Foundation and Artplace, with partnering sponsorship support from The Boeing Company, Allstate Insurance Corporation and Digitas, LBI. Support also comes from The Chicago Community Trust, The Cookie Jar Foundation, David and Suzu Neithercut, The Polk Bros. Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, Weber Grill and a grant from ArtPlace America, a collaboration of leading national and regional foundations, banks and federal agencies accelerating creative placemaking across the US.

For more information on the Great Chicago Fire Festival visit and for more information on Redmoon and its programs, visit

About Redmoon
Redmoon's mission is to transform the experience of Chicago through free large-scale theatrical events that promote community, creativity and an empowered democracy. Over the past 24 years, Redmoon has become a highly valued Chicago institution with its high-profile collaborations, vibrant outdoor performances and authentic community partnerships. In 2009, Jim Lasko joined forces with long-time collaborator Frank Maugeri to co-lead Redmoon as it garnered international attention for its unique productions, site-specific performances and participatory events. Since 1991, Redmoon has performed for more than 250,000 people in 30 different neighborhoods in 116 public spaces.

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