Close Encounters of the Third Kind in Concert

May 3 - May 5, 2024
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Immerse yourself in Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi masterpiece with John Williams’ pioneering score performed by the CSO. The film stars Richard Dreyfuss as an Indiana utility worker who experiences a close encounter with a UFO. Nominated for eight Academy Awards including Best Original Score, Close Encounters of the Third Kind remains as powerful and engrossing today as it did at its 1977 premiere.

  • Venue
    Symphony Center
  • Price Range
  • Length
    2 hours 40 minutes
  • Preconcert Conversation
    Richard Kaufman & Andrew Johnston (May 3 only)

Close Encounters of the Third Kind


Enhance your concert experience.

Preconcert Dining

Enhance your concert experience by dining at Forte featuring contemporary Mediterranean cuisine or the Thomas Club featuring traditional American fare. Learn more »

Preconcert Conversation

On Friday, May 3, explore the music and the science of extraterrestrial life in a free preconcert conversation featuring Richard Kaufman and astronomer Andrew Johnston from the Adler Planetarium. The conversation will take place in Orchestra Hall 75 minutes before the performance. The talk will last approximately 30 minutes. No additional tickets are needed.


This concert is part of the CSO at the Movies series, which is generously sponsored by Megan and Steve Shebik.

The appearance of the Chicago Symphony Chorus has been made possible by a generous gift from The Grainger Foundation.

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The genius of John Williams, says Richard Kaufman says, is that he "really appreciates great storytelling, and his music truly accompanies the story and only calls attention to itself when he means for it to call attention to itself.”
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