Classical boy band Blake. *Photo supplied
Classical boy band Blake. *Photo supplied
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THURSDAY, NOV. 17: Musicians who played at President Barack Obama’s inauguration and a band with Royal connections are among the performers at this year’s Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts.

Tickets for the 37th festival go on sale at 10am on Monday and the festival runs from January 17 to February 26.

It is quite a coup for the festival to have brought in the hugely popular classical boy band Blake. Rumours were flying around in 2010 that they might sing at the much anticipated Royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton after they were invited to perform at Buckingham Palace twice. The handsome quartet topped the music charts globally in April and will be opening the Bermuda Festival at the Fairmont Southampton on January 17.

Venezuelan pianist Gabriel Montero also has a significant claim to fame having performed with cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Itzhak Perlman and clarinettist Anthony McGill at President Barack Obama’s inauguration in 2009. SheMontero, who will perform a lively Sunday afternoon concert at City Hall on January 29, is known for her dexterity and improvisation and will be inviting the audience for requests.

The soulful Marlena Smalls and her Hallelujah Singers will celebrate the rich culture of the Gullah people of South Carolina. They live in the Sea Islands, an area made famous by the character Bubba in the film Forest Gump.

Festival Chairman Ian Davidson said the 2012 programme is outstanding for local art lovers. “Our 2012 programme is diverse, featuring amazing jazz in the trumpeting stylings of Jon Faddis and his Jazz Orchestra of New York, to the compelling acting of Thembi Mtshali-Jones in Mother to Mother, to the all French Valentine programme of soprano Carole Farley. There’s even family fun in ZOOZOO with animals.”

Festival Director, Karen Pollard said: “ We have two chamber groups in the lineup, The Schubert Ensemble of London, and The Toulouse Chamber Orchestra conducted by the illustrious José Serebrier who will also give a pre-performance talk on The Role of the Conductor. And of course we’re delighted to host Ailey II, the junior company of the world-renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre.”

For details on performances in the 2012 Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts visit www.bermudafestival.org or call 232-2255 for a brochure. Tickets will be available at box office locations and online at starting at 10am on Monday, November 21.

Festival box office locations are: All Wrapped Up Home, Washington Mall and Fabulous Fashions at the Heron Bay Plaza, Southampton. Visit www.bermudafestival.org or www.bdatix.bm to buy tickets online. For those who prefer, tickets can be purchased by phone for $3 per ticket extra. Call 232-2255 to make your booking.

Tickets are $65 for adults and $25 for students.

Line-up information provided by the Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts:

Blake

When: January 17

Where: Fairmont Southampton Princess

Time: 8:30pm

Bridging the gap between pop and opera, the male vocal quartet will perform a mix of timeless classics and popular songs.

 

Jon Faddis Jazz Orchestra of New York

When: January 20

Where: Fairmont Southampton Princess

Time: 8:30pm

Acclaimed ‘the best trumpeter ever’ by Dizzy Gillespie, Jon Faddis will demonstrate his mastery of the instrument in the jazz genre. Backed by his orchestra, the evening is a must for all jazz lovers.

Ailey II

When: January 23 and 24

Where: Ruth Seaton James Centre

Time: 8pm

The junior company of the world-renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre performs a vibrant exhilarating evening of dance honouring longstanding Ailey artistic director Judith Jamison who recently retired.


Marlena Smalls and the Hallelujah Singers

When: January 27 and 28

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

Charismatic vocalist Marlena Smalls whose repertoire extends through gospel, jazz, blues, contemporary and sacred music will feature the Hallelujah Singers and weave in storytelling to celebrate the Gullah culture of South Carolina’s Sea Islands, a culture steeped in its West African heritage.

 

Gabriela Montero

When: January 29

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 4:30pm

Gabriela Montero will give a late afternoon Sunday concert that promises to sizzle with “emotionally charged virtuosity and kaleidoscopic sonic colouring”. A classically trained Venezuelan pianist, Ms Montero performed with celebrated violinist Itzhak Perlman, and cellist Yo-Yo Ma at the inauguration of US President Barack Obama in 2009.

 

Mother to Mother

When: January 31

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

This South African play loosely based on the murder of the American Fulbright scholar Amy Biehl in Gugulethu township, brings together three prominent theatre arts women in South Africa: writer, Sindiwe Magone; director Janice Honeyman; and actress, Thembi Mtshali-Jones.

 

Schubert Ensemble of London

When: February 3

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

One of the world’s leading exponents of music for piano and strings, the Schubert Ensemble of London has been able to include Bermuda this year in its busy international tour schedule. The ensemble will also conduct a workshop with Bermuda’s young string students.

 

Proof

When: February 10 & 11

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

Playwright David Auburn’s Proof is the winner of both the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and a Tony Award for Best Play. Philadelphia Walnut Street Theatre, founded in 1809, is the oldest continuously operating theatre in the United States. These two accolades combine to produce a stunning performance.

 

Carole Farley

When: February 16

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

American soprano Carole Farley will perform the work of French composers Debussy, Ravel and Poulenc in French. Poulenc’s one-act opera La Voix Humaine will be part of the programme. English translation will be provided.

 

Toulouse Chamber Orchestra

When: February 17&18

Where: City Hall Theatre

Time: 8pm

Multi-Grammy Award winner conductor Jose Serebrier conducts the wonderful Toulouse Chamber Orchestra of France. A different programme will run each of the two nights, so buy tickets to both.

 

ZooZoo

When: February 24 at 6:30pm, February 25 at 2:30pm and 6:30pm and February 26 at 2:30pm.

Where: City Hall Theatre

Wonderful costuming makes ZOOZOO, visually arresting. Fabulous acting by Imago Theatre makes this family entertainment humorous and endearing. Watch out for the penguins and hippos!