Balkano is the latest project of clarinetist Bryan Pardo, Northwestern University computer-design professor by day, who uses that expertise to create new music as well as play traditional reed instruments of various cultures. The Chicago-based sextet, which in addition to Pardo includes trumpeter James Davis, guitarist Ari Seder, vocalist Diana Lawrence, bassist Matthew Golombisky and percussionist Joe Chellman, attempts to meld the influence of artists such as Naftule Brandwein, Yuri Yunakov, Ruben Blades and John Zorn, the energy of Bulgarian wedding music, the soul of traditional Klezmer and the groove of Latin jazz into its own original mix. This free appearance is part of the City of Chicago’s Music Without Borders LunchBreak Friday series. (Dennis Polkow) Friday, January 11 at Chicago Cultural Center’s Randolph Café, 77 E. Randolph, (312)744-6630. 12:15pm. Free.