EcoVoice Festival blends music, environmentalism

EcoVoice, a new project connecting music and environmentalism, is partnering with UIC Summer Institute on Sustainability and Energy to debut the three-day EcoVoice Music Festival at UIC Friday, July 8. 

Thomas Lipsmeyer, co-founder of both organizations, is a lecturer at UIC who teaches classes on connecting environmentalism and music. He designed the festival to inspire and connect individuals through song, performance and activities, opening space for people to reflect on their personal experiences with the environment.

“It’s taking the things that we’re concerned about, these environmental and social issues, and putting them in a different context,” said Lipsmeyer, coordinator of the UIC Summer Institute on Sustainability and Energy. “That message for climate justice, energy justice, environmental concern, conservation, concern for water and future generations, and concern for rising temperatures, but creating it in a different space, through music, that allows people to approach it in a way that’s not quite so confrontational and presents in a way they’re familiar with, and that they like. That is through art, and specifically music.”

The festival’s opening concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday at UIC’s James Stukel Towers auditorium. The full event lineup can be found on the EcoVoice website. Tickets are free to all UIC students and can be reserved online.

The festival features nine artists throughout the event, including the world premieres of “Praise Song to Oceania” and “Ocean: An Improvised Song Cycle.” The event also includes a special performance by Jonathan Hannau, as well as several film screenings, all emphasizing the beauty and importance of our oceans through the art of solo voice.

The music festival kicks off at UIC July 8, continues July 9 Loyola University and concludes at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Evanston July 10.

The EcoVoice project is already planning a new weeklong music festival for next spring, as well as more concerts and collaborations with artists and organizations. The team is currently looking for students who share the same vision to join the cause and become a member of the EcoVoice project.

If interested in joining, please contact Lipsmeyer at


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