Downtown Aurora music venue will launch with sold-out show

By Steve Lord / The Beacon-News

The Fox Valley Music Foundation’s downtown¬†Aurora¬†live music facility will launch June 1 with an already sold-out event.

The Venue, the new 200-seat music performance space at 21 S. Broadway, will have its official grand opening with a Blues and Roots Festival.

Organizers said the festival will feature rising Chicago Blues star Toronzo Cannon, Grateful String Band, Chicago singer/songwriter Nicole Amine and local artist Noah Gabriel. The June 1 event, from 6 to 11 p.m., is sold out.

The Aurora City Council is set to vote on the liquor license for The Venue, which it is likely to do Tuesday.

The Venue will feature international, national and local music performers. It also will provide educational events, workshops and films about the music of the Fox Valley. A retail area will provide promotional brand merchandise, vintage blues posters and a selection of music from local artists.

Musical instruments, memorabilia, artwork and collectibles will be exhibited throughout the building. The Venue will serve as a gathering place for local musicians to meet and share songs and ideas during daytime hours on weekends, officials said.

Blues Music Award nominees Missy and Heine Anderson are scheduled to perform at 2 p.m. June 2 at The Venue.

Blues on the Fox after-hours performances will take place immediately following the weekend festival shows at RiverEdge Park. Steepwater will take the stage at 10 p.m. June 14 with Wayne Baker Brooks at 10 p.m. June 15.

Future performers for The Venue include local singer/songwriter Kevin Presbrey, international group Los Ignitos y Ignota, Bluegrass musicians Pat Bergesen and Jonas Friddle, bluesmen Dave Specter and Smiley Tilmon, The Accidentals, the Fox Valley Orchestra Big Band and more.

For recently added shows or to purchase tickets, go to

Adjacent to Mundy Park in downtown Aurora, The Venue was created and built by the Fox Valley Music Foundation with significant grants from the city of Aurora, Invest Aurora and The Community Foundation of Fox Valley as well as numerous donations from music lovers and businesses in the community.

The modular arrangement of the acoustically engineered space will provide a flexible area that will support general admission shows as well as special reserved seating, officials said.

The Fox Valley Music Foundation plans to offer a variety of music genres at The Venue including orchestral, big band, jazz, roots, blues, rock, soul and funk as well as world music.

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