Southern Illinois Music Festival events scheduled at area venues

The 17th annual Southern Illinois Music Festival is scheduled to return to the region in July.

The festival is scheduled to run July 6-18 and will feature the works of well-known composers, including Felix Mendelssohn, Dmitri Shostakovich, Antonio Vivaldi, Reinhold Gliere, Guiseppe Verdi, Giacomo Puccini and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Festival artists are scheduled to include members of the Chicago Symphony, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Los Angeles Opera and the Washington National Opera. 

Performances are scheduled at sites throughout the region.

The centerpiece for the 2021 festival is Mozart’s appropriately revised opera, “COVID fan tutte,” sung in English with English supertitles.

Each of the festival events will comply with current Restore Illinois guidelines, and each of the performers will be vaccinated.

“The Southern Illinois Music Festival (SIFest) has enjoyed 16 seasons of annual artistic, educational and financial success,” said Edward Benyas, SIFest artistic director and conductor, in a news release. 

The long-running event didn’t let the COVID-19 pandemic slow its course a year ago. 

The 16th annual festival, while delayed a few months, took place in 2020 with enhanced safety measures. 

Tickets to most festival events are $20 for general admission and $10 for students of any age; $25 and $10 for the July 16 and 18 opera performances at Shryock Auditorium on the campus of Southern Illinois University Carbondale. 

A season pass is available for $125. The Klassics for Kids and Jive with Jazz events for children of all ages are free and reservations are not needed.

Tickets are available at the door for all performances and advance reservations are not necessary. 

Advance tickets are available by contacting Benyas at or 312-560-2094. 

Pre-festival ticket order forms are available on the  festival website at The forms can be printed and are to be mailed by Tuesday, June 15, along with a check for the total amount payable to “Southern Illinois Music Festival” to Edward Benyas, SIU School of Music, Mailcode 4302, Carbondale, Ill. 62901.

Patrons will receive an email confirmation of their order and instructions at the beginning of July, along with concert arrival information and notice of any health restrictions in place at the time.

Festival Schedule

Tuesday, July 6

7 p.m. Benyas Piano Trio at ArtSpace 304, 304 W. Walnut, Carbondale. Trios by Schubert and Shostakovich.

Friday, July 9

7 p.m. Chamber orchestra at the First United Methodist Church in Carbondale: Vivaldi Overload. Vivaldi string and wind concertos, including two of the “Four Seasons.”

Saturday, July 10

11 a.m. Jive with Jazz in Carbondale.

7 p.m. Chamber music at ArtSpace 304: 19th and 20th Century Chamber Music I. French works for string quartet and wind quintet, and the string octet by Reinhold Gliere.

Sunday, July 11

2 p.m. Chamber orchestra at the First United Methodist Church in Carbondale: Preludes and concerti. Operatic preludes by Verdi and Puccini, Debusy’s “Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun,” two of Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” and a Mozart aria and concerto.

Monday, July 12

5 p.m. Chamber music at the Episcopal Church in Cairo: First and last string quartets of Beethoven.

7 p.m. Chamber music at the Anna Arts Center: String quartets by Joachim Raff and Reinhold Gliere.

Tuesday, July 13

7 p.m. Chamber music at the First United Methodist Church in Carbondale: 19th and 20th Century Chamber Music II.

Thursday, July 15

7 p.m. Mozart’s “COVID fan tutte” concert version, Shryock Auditorium.

Friday, July 16

7 p.m. Mozart’s “COVID fan tutte” at Shryock Auditorium.

Saturday, July 17

11 a.m. Klassics for Kids at the First Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Anna.

Noon. Music for strings and organ at the First Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Anna.

7 p.m. Chamber orchestra concert at the First United Methodist Church in Carbondale: Best of the Fest. Vivaldi concerti and 19th and 20th century chamber music.

Sunday, July 18

2 p.m. Mozart’s “COVID fan tutte” at Shyrock Auditorium.

For All Concerts

Organizers noted there will be general admission seating for all concerts.

All patrons are to wear masks. Ushers will ensure social distancing. Advance reservations only. Seating is limited due to COVID-19 restrictions.


The Gazette-Democrat

112 Lafayette St.
Anna, Illinois 62906
Office Number: (618) 833-2158

Sign Up For Breaking News

Stay informed on our latest news!

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
1 + 1 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.
Comment Here