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Wyclef Jean to headline Artscape 2016

Musician Wyclef Jean will headline this year's Artscape.
Musician Wyclef Jean will headline this year's Artscape. (Craig Barritt / Getty Images for Hublot)

Hip-hop veteran Wyclef Jean will headline the musical lineup at this year's Artscape, the annual free arts festival set for July 15-17, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake announced Wednesday.

"From rap to reggae to ska punk, there is something in just about every music genre on the concert stages," Rawlings-Blake said.

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Jean's performance is set for 7:30 p.m. July 15 on the BGE Main Stage, at the Maryland Institute College of Art. Other scheduled Main Stage performers include the Mighty Mighty Bosstones (7:30 p.m. July 16) and Burning Spear (6:30 p.m. July 17).

In addition, Baltimore's annual free festival dedicated to the performing and visual arts will feature tributes to two music giants who died this year. DJs will host a "Prince Dance Party" from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. July 15, while the "Bmore Does Bowie" will feature live bands paying tribute to the late David Bowie the following evening.

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The festival will also present free shows at the newly christened artist incubator space Motor House, at 120 W. North Ave., including a presentation of the musical "Dreamgirls," performed by ArtsCentric. That show is set for 7:30 p.m. July 15.

For its 35th year, Artscape, billed as the nation's largest free arts festival, will revolve around the theme "Space: Explore What's Out There." Included among the festival's exhibits will be six large-scale space-related art installations: "ART/HAB," described as "a space-age habitat housed in three geodesic domes"; "Celestial Light," two 20-foot-tall sculptures featuring performance art; "Moloch's Institute for Extranormal Research," exploring "the truth about alien visitors to planet Earth"; "Space Place," showcasing an inflatable sun and planets; "The Mother Ship Connection," a model mother ship serving as a base for performance art; and "Crater," designed as a crash site-turned-art space.

Every year, Artscape attracts roughly 350,000 people and has an economic impact of almost $26 million, according to figures from a 2012 study provided by the Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts, which produces the festival. Activities and exhibits take place in and around the intersection of Mount Royal Avenue and North Charles Street.

For more information, go to artscape.org.

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