Motown magic: The legendary Diana Ross is headed to Champaign-Urbana for the first time in 50 years as part of her "Diamond Diana 75th Birthday: A Year of Celebration" tour. 

Ross, a 12-time Grammy nominee with a long string of hits including "Baby Love," "You Can't Hurry Love" and "Touch Me in the Morning," will perform 7:30 p.m. July 11 in the State Farm Center theatre. Her tour begins in June with six shows at the Wynn Las Vegas, followed by about a dozen dates on the East Coast and Midwest. She'll also perform at the Chicago Theatre on July 10. 

Tickets priced at $43.50-$144.50 go on sale to the general public at 10 a.m. Monday via the State Farm Center website. 

For trivia buffs, Ross last performed on campus with the Supremes in March 1969. 

Summer art, uptown: The venerable Sugar Creek Arts Festival returns to uptown Normal from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. July 13 and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. July 14. 

This will be the 36th year for the annual fest, which features about 130 artists selling photography, paintings, ceramics, jewelry, fiber, sculpture, wood works and more. There's also a variety of musical performances scheduled throughout the weekend. 

See a list of this year's participating artists by visiting the McLean County Arts Center website.

A piece of Americana: Josh Ritter & The Royal City Band will perform at 8 p.m. Aug. 23 at the Castle Theatre in downtown Bloomington.

The 42-year-old singer and his band will release their 10th album, "Fever Breaks," later this month, and their latest tour kicks off less than two weeks later. 

Ritter has garnered praise both for his singing and his songs. "A guileless, boy-next-door voice belies the depth and ambition of Josh Ritter’s songs," gushed the New York Times. Paste magazine honored him as one of the 100 best living songwriters, while Entertainment Weekly listed Ritter among “The 10 Most Exciting Artists Now." 

Tickets for the show are priced at $30 and $35, and go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday via the Castle's website. 



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