Columbia College Chicago’s Iconic Manifest Arts Festival Returns to South Loop May 10

manifest chicago urban festival at columbia college chicago Manifest Urban Arts Festival, 2018. Photo: Alexis Ellers '08
Experience more than 100 free public programs with live music, dance, and art; Exhibitions curated by more than 2,000 student artists.

CHICAGO—April 11, 2019. Manifest festival returns to the South Loop’s Wabash Arts Corridor for the 19th year, offering a free celebration of the creative arts. Attendees will experience an array of engaging, thought-provoking, and interactive art, music, and visuals that only Columbia College Chicago students can create. The festivities will include live bands and DJs, gallery exhibitions, dance and theatre performances, fashion exhibitions, and more.

The day-long event will span the Wabash Arts Corridor from 9th to 11th Streets, Friday, May 10, from 12-9 p.m.

“Manifest is Columbia’s signature event, bringing together students and the community,” said Vice President of Student Affairs Sharon Wilson-Taylor. “Manifest celebrates and showcases students’ final bodies of work—an essential part of preparing for the creative professions.”

This year’s festival theme, Amplify, is meant to inspire students to use their creative voices loudly upon graduation from Columbia within their respective fields. The design and logo for Manifest 2019 represents the Amplify theme and was created by Lex Heyler, a senior graphic design major and this year’s Creative Director.

Student Charlie Curtis-Beard is the winner of this year’s Manifest song competition and will perform his anthem “Greatness Underneath” on the Mainstreet Mainstage on Wabash Avenue. A national music headliner will be announced later this month.

Details about Manifest 2019 and up-to-date programming can be found at Some of this year’s event highlights include:

  • 40+ musical performances throughout the day, ranging from pop rock bands to hip-hop, DJs, blues, jazz, folk and gospel ensembles
  • Live-action filmmaking where guests can experience the world of Hollywood filmmaking up close
  • Family-friendly activities including Through a Dog’s Eyes, an outdoor exhibition created for “our dog friends” that serves to educate visitors on the science of dog senses
  • On-site food trucks from famous Chicago mobile food vendors
  • Fashion exhibitions featuring Columbia student designs and installations
  • ShopColumbia, offering student art, photography, fashion, jewelry, cards, gifts, books and 2019 Manifest gear as well as book signings by children’s book faculty artists Ivan Brunetti and Christopher Eliopoulos
  • Original student plays and dance concerts choreographed and performed by students across hip-hop, African, jazz, tap, musical theater and contemporary styles
  • Gallery walks of 20 group exhibitions with student art for sale
  • 15+ premiere screenings of student films, ranging from original animation to documentary, experimental and narrative forms
  • VR and AR student-created video games including the popular 24-Hour Game Jam




Columbia College Chicago is a private, nonprofit college offering a distinctive curriculum that blends creative and media arts, liberal arts, and business for nearly 7,000 students in more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Dedicated to academic excellence and long-term career success, Columbia College Chicago creates a dynamic, challenging, and collaborative space for students who experience the world through a creative lens. For more information, visit


Elizabeth Neukirch
The Silverman Group

Lambrini Lukidis
Columbia College Chicago
O: 312-369-8695 C: 616-808-7378