Written by Rebecca Hollman
Photos by KURSZA
ARC Music Festival returns to Chicago, Illinois this Labor Day Weekend September 1st-3rd, 2023. The epic techno and house festival brings the top global names in techno and house stateside for all us American techno lovers to enjoy. ARC heads into its third year firmly rooted as a fan-favorite in the global festival circuit, continuing to bring internationally renowned talent to the birthplace of house music.
The festival has already announced its full lineup and schedule by day, which includes techno heavy hitters like Adam Beyer, Eric Prydz, Nina Kraviz, Anfisa Letyago, Peggy Gou, and more and the top in house producers like Fisher, Walker & Royce, Dombresky, Eli Brown, and more. Notable performances for the weekend include seldom seen Boys Noize, the awe inspiring visuals of Tale of Us, and the up-and-coming Miss Monique.
Each night after a full day of music onsite, ARC will take over the city with its wide-reaching after party programming across ARC partner venues RADIUS, Cermak Hall, Concord Music Hall, PRYSM, Spybar, Smart Bar/Metro, and Smoke & Mirrors.
Thursday kicks off at Smoke & Mirrors with a pre-party presented by Chicago icons DJ Heather, DJ Lady D, Biobooster aka Hiroko Yamamura, and Dani Deahl. Walker & Royce will soundtrack the Thursday pre party at Spybar for a Rules Don’t Apply takeover, while Ben Klock brings his intense and powerful brand of techno to a pre party at Prysm.
Friday highlights include a Radius After Dark show from the legendary Eric Prydz alongside Adam Beyer. German FCKNG SERIOUS label head Boris Brejcha will also take the decks at Cermak Hall. Nina Kraviz, DJ Slugo, and Hieroglyphic Being will light up Concord Music Hall for a confluence of techno and ghetto house while breakout star Anfisa Letyago joins veterans DJ Minx and Cassy at Spybar. Smart Bar/Metro provides an electric two floor affair to kick off the weekend featuring the eclectic VTSS and Boys Noize going back to back alongside Steel City Dance Discs stars Mall Grab and Kettama.
Saturday spotlights a Chicago vs Detroit showcase featuring the highest class of veteran talent including The Blessed Madonna, Moodymann, Carl Craig, Mike Dunn, and DJ Pierre. Hometown sensation John Summit will command the decks at Radius while Dennis Cruz and Ilario Alicante keep the party going at Spybar. International meets local legends with Patrick Topping, Loco Dice, and DJ Heather at Cermak Hall plus Hot Since 82 and Derrick Carter at Concord Hall.
Sunday features global sensations and Afterlife leaders Tale of Us for an After Dark thriller alongside fast riser Kevin De Vries. Brazilian breakout Mochakk will play an intimate show at Smoke & Mirrors while techno heavy hitters Sara Landry, Volvox, and Patrixia b2b Chess Knight lead Cermak Hall’s final night. Other highlights include South African artists Black Coffee and THEMBA at PRYSM, Vintage Culture b2b Carlita at Condord, plus Âme and Chloé Caillet at Spybar.
Monday concludes the weekend with Farris Wheel’s Anita Dee II Yacht party takeover featuring label head Gene Farris alongside Eskuche and Basara Boyz. Spanish standout Wade will also play an after party to cap PRYSM’s final day.
In a short span of just three years, ARC has already cemented its legacy as a standout festival. It unites festival lovers from around the country with the top talent in techno and house from around the globe, something that no other festival in the U.S. really seems to pull off. If the past 2 years have been any indication of ARC’s success, then we know 2023 will be sure to exceed all expectations. Make sure you get you make it to Chicago this Labor Day Weekend as you really don’t want to miss this!