Unity Temple will hold its biennial (every other year) Schubert+ Festival on Leap Day, Feb. 29, honoring Austrian composer Franz Schubert’s short but prolific life. A ticket gives you access to the UNESCO World Heritage site for seven hours that Saturday, culminating in an appearance by world-class tenor Lawrence Brownlee. 

Schubert Festivals are a longstanding tradition for music lovers, on or around Schubert’s birthday. And what better way to spend Leap Day’s accumulated extra time. 

The internationally acclaimed Brownlee has been called “one of the world’s leading bel canto stars.” He was named “Male Singer of the Year” in 2017 at the International Opera Awards and has performed on some of the greatest world stages, including Lyric Opera’s current season, as Arturo in I Puritani.  

The Schubert Festival at Unity Temple takes place on Saturday, Feb. 29 from 2:30 to 9:30 p.m., 875 Lake St. It consists of four programs, including a song recital featuring Schubert lieder, chamber music by CSO and Lyric Opera Orchestra musicians, and a piano recital performing the four Schubert intermezzos, plus the evening appearance by Brownlee.

Other featured artists include pianist Winston Choi and soprano Christine Steyer, both of whom are Oak Park residents. A Viennese-themed dinner is available between the afternoon and evening performances for an extra fee. 

For more information or to purchase Festival and/or dinner tickets online via credit card, visit: schubertfestivalunitytemple.org.

Ken Trainor

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