Navy Pier Hosts Chicago Debut of Nick Cave's The Let Go

CHICAGO: Navy Pier, Chicago's year-round lakefront destination, invites guests and the community to come and let go through dance and movement at The Let Go - a free, immersive and interactive performance installation in Festival Hall A from Friday, April 3 through Sunday, April 12, which coincides with Chicago Dance Month in April.

Created by internationally-acclaimed and Chicago-based artist Nick Cave, the installation is presented in partnership with EXPO CHICAGO, The International Exposition of Contemporary and Modern Art, and the Park Avenue Armory, who originally commissioned the work and debuted it in New York City in 2018. This dance-based town hall - part art installation, part music venue and part dance club - will allow for social gatherings and be activated by Chase, a multi-colored, 40-foot high, 100-foot-long mylar sculpture that glides across the dance floor. People of all ages are invited to explore art through movement, release their creative energy, celebrate independence and engage with the community.

It's important for me that my work connects with people, all people. I see my art as a platform that invites everyone to share a collective experience, said artist Nick Cave. For me, Navy Pier is the perfect space for The Let Go because of its magnetic pull on so many different populations and the destination's ability to bring people from all over together.

As part of The Let Go's Chicago debut and Nick Cave's return to Navy Pier, the space will further be activated by dance instigators, who will liven the crowd through performance and lead group dances regularly. The installation will also feature Chicago's top house music DJs live each day to celebrate the city's rich history of house music and create a festive and exciting atmosphere. DJs performing at The Let Go include Steve Miggidy Maestro, Lady D, Duane Powell, Chosen Few DJs (Andre Hatchett, Terry Hunter, Wayne Williams & Alan King, Mike Dunn), Cordell Johnson, Dee Jay Alicia, DJ All the Way Kay, Czarina Mirani, Sadie Rock, DJ Diz, Jesse De La Pena, Ron Carroll, DJ Heather, DJ Milty Evans, Celestethedj, DJ Love Bug and John Simmons, as well as playlists provided by WBEZ's Vocalo. Additionally, as a way to introduce Chicago to Chicago, many groups and organizations across the city will be invited to use the space at set times to create, commune or just let go.

Navy Pier is thrilled to welcome back Nick Cave, one of the most imaginative, innovative and inclusive artists in the world, to present The Let Go, said Michelle T. Boone, Navy Pier's Chief Program and Civic Engagement Officer. As the 'People's Pier,' this installation allows for families, art lovers, dancers, and adults and children of all ages to experience a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in Nick's latest installation featured in his hometown for the first time.

This multi-disciplinary experience is supported by generous grants from Choose Chicago, The Joyce Foundation and Jennifer Steans and Jim Kastenholz.

The Let Go will be free and open to the general public during the following dates and times
April 3 7 - 11 p.m. | April 4 Noon - 10 p.m. | April 5 Noon - 6 p.m. | April 8 Noon - 8 p.m. | April 9 Noon - 5 p.m. | April 10 Noon - 6 p.m. | April 11 Noon - 11 p.m. | April 12 Noon - 5 p.m.

While admission to The Let Go is free, there will also be two ticketed special events to support and energize the project. Chicagoans are invited to attend the Freedom Ball on Thursday, April 9 from 7 p.m. to midnight, an evening celebration of art, house music, fashion, creativity and the power of community, featuring a competitive costume runway show with cash prizes totaling $15,000 awarded by a panel of guest celebrity judges. At the Artist Response Night, the second premiere event of The Let Go on Friday, April 10 from 8 p.m. to midnight, artists of different mediums, invited by Nick Cave, are asked to respond to Chase and interpret and create a site specific performance, including Chicago-based poet and spoken word performer avery r. young and The Empress of Soul entertainer and songwriter Terisa Griffin. Tickets are available online here respectively (Freedom Ball; Artist Response Night) as well as at the door. Bundle ticket pricing options are available on Eventbrite. Guests are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance and additional event details will be announced in the upcoming weeks.

To illuminate The Let Go, EXPO CHICAGO will host a symposium as part of /Dialogues in collaboration with the School of the Art Institute of Chicago on Wednesday, April 8 from 1030 a.m. to noon in the SAIC Ballroom, featuring Nick Cave in conversation with others to be announced.

The exposition's year-round international program for panel discussions, /Dialogues, will return to Chicago this Spring on the occasion of this momentous installation at Navy Pier, said Stephanie Cristello, EXPO CHICAGO Artistic Director. The Symposium will provide a platform for critical discussion and context with Cave, one of the leading artists in the United States working in Chicago, through a multi-part conversation that delves into the concept of The Let Go, and the local histories embedded within the work.

As a mission-driven nonprofit, The Let Go is part of Navy Pier's free, year-round arts and culture programming, designed to inspire, educate and connect communities across the city and globe. In addition to attending The Let Go, guests are encouraged to check out other Pier-wide experiences in dining, retail, attractions and more. For more information, please visit

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Navy Pier Hosts Chicago Debut of Nick Cave's The Let Go