by Alex Yablon
The last day of the 2009 Chicago World Music Festival is a veritable Free Shit bonanza, with nine different performers playing for free.
At noon, Iraqi oud master Rahim Alhaj plays the Chicago Cultural Center's Claudia Cassidy Theater (78 E. Washington), along with 21 year old classical Carnatic vocalist Aditya Prakash and pan-Balkan band Vlada Tomova's Balkan Tales. Also at noon are the local Congolese percussion group Tambours Sans Frontieres, at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park (201 E. Randolph).
In the evening is the festival's closing celebration at the Chicago Cultural Center, "One World Under One Roof." The Cultural Center's Randolph Cafe hosts Polish avant-garde jazz duo Mikrokolektyw at 6 PM, Brazillian psych-pop songwriter Momo at 7:30, and local flamenco outfit Idilio at 9. Bulgarian men's choir Klapa Lisnjak sing in the Claudia Cassidy Theater at 6:30, followed by Tambours Sans Frontieres at 7:45 and Vlada Tomova's Balkan Tales at 9:15. Rahim Alhaj performs for a second time at 7 in Preston Bradley Hall, followed by Aditya Prakash at 8:15 (joined by violinist Nishant Chandran and mdridangam player Nirmal Narayan) and late-blooming gospel sensation Naomi Shelton & the Gospel Queens at 9:30.