A ‘Village of Love’ comes to Chicago to support Planned Parenthood


Source: Phillip Angert

Ty Segall performs at a past Panache Village of Love Valentine’s Day Benefit at Teragram Ballroom in Los Angeles. The Planned Parenthood benefit concert is coming to Chicago’s Lincoln Hall this Thursday.

Daisy Conant, Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor

Panache Booking owner Michelle Cable said she started hosting Valentine’s Day parties in New York City eleven years ago to overcome the loneliness that often comes with the “strange holiday.” This year, she is bringing her party-turned-benefit-concert to Chicago.

Whether single or taken, eagerly anticipating the holiday or dreading it, Chicagoans are invited to spend Valentine’s Day at Panache’s annual Village of Love Valentine’s Day Benefit at Lincoln Hall this Thursday — all in support of Planned Parenthood.

“Valentine’s Day is a holiday that is mainly promoted via romance and love, which also means sex,” Cable said. “So why not support a charity that’s all about safe sex and education?”

According to a news release, the benefit will feature performances from a range of celebrated local artists, including Jeff Tweedy, Knox Fortune, Deeper, Femdot and V.V. Lightbody.

Anna Benefield, a booking agent for Panache and one of the lead organizers of the benefit, said the artists will be showcasing their own work as well as a few covers of their favorite love songs, possibly performing pieces they’ve never played in front of an audience.

“It’s a free-form, love-themed performance,” Benefield said. “There are so many great bands coming out of Chicago at the moment. … It’s going to be a really fun night for the artists and the audience.”

One of the Chicago bands performing on Thursday is Deeper, consisting of musicians Shiraz Bhatti, Mike Clawson, Nic Gohl and Drew McBride. The band said they decided to participate in the benefit because they believe the services Planned Parenthood provides are “an essential human right.”

“We decided to be a part of this Planned Parenthood benefit show because of how vital health care services are to every single individual, including those without adequate means,” the band said in an email to The Daily. “Some of the most vulnerable and underprivileged populations would go unserved if not for Planned Parenthood. … We are proud to support their organization.”

Both Cable and Benefield said that Panache — a company with a female owner and an all-female staff — supports Planned Parenthood because its staffers have personal connections to the nonprofit and the work it does in providing health services to people across the country.

While the event has evolved from informal “dance parties” to benefit concerts hosted in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago and Detroit, Cable said it is important to her and her team that Panache’s Village of Love Benefit continues to remain a charity event.

Cable added that hosting the Village of Love Valentine’s Day Benefit in support of local Planned Parenthood chapters is a way to combine her passions for music and event organizing while giving back to an organization that assisted her in the past.

“Planned Parenthood is a really important organization for everyone out there who does not have access to health insurance, but especially younger women,” Cable said. “When I was younger, it was a business that was near and dear to my heart, as it was a place where I could go to get educated on birth control or being sexually active without any judgment.”

As long as Valentine’s Day continues to come around and Planned Parenthood continues to need help and support, Cable said audiences will be able to visit Panache’s Village of Love in future years.

“I love hosting events for charity and bringing people together for a good cause, so I’ll continue to do it,” Cable said. “It’s also an amazing night of fun, community and love.”

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