$20 – $35

The Microphones with Emily Sprague

17+

Actions and Detail Panel

$20 – $35

Event Information

Performers

The Microphones

Emily Sprague

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Date and time

Location

Location

Thalia Hall

1807 South Allport Street

Chicago, IL 60608

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Refund policy

Refund policy

No Refunds

Event description
Doors: 730PM | Show: 830PM

About this event

The old smell of air

coming faintly through the spring

crack in the snow above a hibernating bear’s winter den,

the smell of long self-absorption,

burrowing into one’s own chest, re-breathing the exhales of one’s own breath,

the smell of squinting in the dark

ruminating in dreams

beneath layering years, the snow still falling.

In the dark smoldering

slowly burning through all the old clothes, sifting through the ash,

wiping old shedded fur from the eyes

nosing out into the light.

In that brief moment when the airs of the past and present meet,

at the mouth of the open bed,

egoic solidity burns away in the spring wind, self becomes fuel,

there is only now

and the past is a dream burning off.

Fragments arranged along the trail, crumbs consumed, dust blown,

no route back.

Instead of shoring up the tilting walls of whoever I think I am, I push at the seams and try to tip it all over. I do not want to be well known by my name or an image or an idea that might trail me around. I do want to know well, and to share insights, about the workings of time and weather growing and eroding this one life.

It’s always just been autobiography. But mere memoir would be useless without penetrating beyond the surface of the reflecting pool, down to the bedrock stream bed, details washed downstream.

I used to call my recordings a different name. A small clump of albums from 1997-2002 were called “the Microphones,” including some popular ones. But the essence of this project has never really changed: me exploring autobiographically in sound and words with occasional loose participation from friends. The name it has been called has never mattered much to me.

In the summer of 2019 I played a little local concert under the old name for no big reason. The little flurry of weird attention around this announcement got me thinking about what it even means to step back into an old mode. Self commemoration would be embarrassing. I don’t want to go backwards ever. There is nothing to reunite. So I nudged into the future with these ideas and came up with this large song. It took almost a year to write and record, working constantly at home, digging through the archives, playing the same two chords forever on the same $5 first guitar. In it I have tried to get at the heart of what defined that time in my life, my late teens and early twenties, but even more importantly, I tried to break the spell of nostalgia and make something perennial and enduring. All past selves existing at once in this inferno present moment. The song doesn’t seem to end. That’s the point.

We all crash through life prodded and diverted by our memories. There is a way through to disentanglement. Burn your old notebooks and jump through the smoke. Use the ashes to make a new thing.

– Phil Elverum

May 20th, 2020

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Thalia Hall will require all staff, patrons, and performers to provide proof of full vaccination (two weeks after final dose). A negative test will NOT be accepted. Patrons will be asked to show their valid vaccination card (photocopy or digital photo is permissible) when they arrive at the door for entry. Additionally, masks will be worn by staff at all times and will be required of all attendees when not eating and drinking. We are applying these requirements to all future shows and will update the policy as needed or as new guidance requires. Please reach out to us at info@thaliahallchicago.com with any questions.

It’s been a positively joyful experience to see people return to our beloved concert hall for shows again, and we are committed to doing everything in our power to keep guests, staff, and artists safe during this time.

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Performers

The Microphones

Emily Sprague

Date and time

Location

Thalia Hall

1807 South Allport Street

Chicago, IL 60608

View Map

Refund policy

No Refunds

Organizer Thalia Hall

Organizer of The Microphones with Emily Sprague

Thalia Hall is a historic landmark located in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago. It was founded by John Dusek at the turn of the century as a neighborhood establishment. Dusek was a family man, a tavern owner, and a facilitator of the arts. He was a visionary, and the founding father of Thalia Hall. His hope for the corner of 18th & Allport was to build a public hall for the community. In 1892 his dream became reality: a multi-purpose property that would offer commercial storefronts, residential housing, and a hall for the community. In September 2013, owners Bruce Finkelman [Beauty Bar, Bite, Empty Bottle, EBP, Longman & Eagle] and Craig Golden [Longman & Eagle, Space, Union] launched three new concepts within this storied property: a re-established beer inspired restaurant, a Punch focused cocktail bar, and a public hall fit for all types of events.

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