Rochester Lilac Festival organizers announced 19 headliners and special guests to perform free shows at the 121st annual event on May 10-19.
This year’s festival continues the tradition of bringing national performers to entertain more than 500,000 annual visitors from across the state and beyond. Performances will take place on the Sahlen’s Center Stage over the course of the free 10-day festival. In total, there will be 70 group performances at this year’s festival.
“The Rochester Lilac Festival is known for bringing talented performers to Rochester right before, in some cases right as, they’re stepping into the big leagues,” said Jeff Springut, festival producer. “Visitors come from all over to see their favorites and to experience up-and-comers at the festival, because you just can’t beat a free outdoor show surrounded by Rochester’s treasured and fragrant lilac collection.”
This year’s headliners are Yonder Mountain String Band on May 10; The New Mastersounds on May 11; Big Something on May 12, B.B. King Blues Band featuring Michael Lee of NBC’s “The Voice” on May 13, Julian Marley on May 14, Lee Rocker of The Stray Cats on May 15, Maceo Parker on May 16, Classic Albums Live presents Led Zeppelin II on May 17, Zac Brown Tribute Band on May 18, and The Lizards and Big Eyed Phish on May 19.
Arthur, the bespectacled aardvark seen on the PBS Kids cartoon of the same name, will perform on May 13-14.
The Rochester Lilac Festival showcases musical talent on their way to the top. This year’s lineup continues that tradition with seven national artists currently out on tour: Willie Nile on May 11, Kat Wright on May 12, Danielle Ponder and the Tomorrow People on May 13, Eli “Paperboy” Reed on May 15, Cory Wong from Vulfpeck on May 16, and Alyssa Trahan and The Blind Owl Band on May 19.
The Recipe 21 VIP Ultra Lounge will offer a personal viewing experience with front stage access, an in-tent and outdoor lounge area, a cash bar, private air-conditioned restrooms, a commemorative lanyard, refreshments, chair massages, one free drink, and food for purchase inside the tent.
The Party Deck will serve as another way for guests to enjoy the music, complete with a tented bar and private restrooms.
Visit rochesterevents.com/lilac-festival for information.