Cicadas Illinois

Summer concerts, events collide with cicada emergence in Chicago's suburbs

Thousands of cicadas are trying to drown out music with their song, but musicians are taking different steps to combat them

NBC Universal, Inc.

In the Chicago area, an historic emergence of cicadas is colliding with major events around the region, including in Downers Grove.

The Tuesday night summer concert series was in full swing on Tuesday night, with Cadillac Groove thrilling fans in the suburban community, but even as cicadas tried to drown out the music with their own songs, the band continued to play.

“As long as they stay in pitch they’re good,” Carlo Isabelli, the band’s trumpet player, said with a laugh. “But they’re out here. That doesn’t bother us at all.”

Lynne Wagner, who came out to see the show, felt the same way.

“You learn to tune it out, and you enjoy the music,” she said.

Downers Grove marketing manager Danielle Strohmier is also trying to keep a sense of humor about the cicadas.

“Here there’s sometimes competition but they try to work with them,” she said of the artists. “We remind ourselves they’re here temporarily.”

Bands have also cranked up their speaker set-up to drown out the noise and to scatter the insects.

“Last week, they brought the whole speaker set up to combat the cicadas. It was wonderful,” Strohmier said.

Fortunately for music fans, cicada lifespans are incredibly short, so the show will likely go on even after the insects have exited stage left.

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