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Live Music/Gig

George Benson – Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Reviewer: RL Bartholomew Such is the stature of jazz great George Benson that - should he ever choose – he could walk on stage, mumble the titles of his monumental back catalogue and would, no doubt,  receive an ecstatic standing ovation. There is not, indeed, any such grandstanding at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall where the charismatic guitarist plays a two-hour set that effortlessly ...

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Three Sisters – Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

Words, music and performance by RashDash (after Chekhov) Reviewer: Julia Beasley It’s Chekhov, but not as you know it. Actually, it’s not Chekhov at all. Or perhaps it’s Chekhov torn into bits, mashed up, smeared thinly over a feminist diatribe against patriarchy, and then set to live music and dance. RashDash imagines the original three Russian sisters Olga, Masha and ...

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Leeds Piano Festival: Sunwook Kim – Howard Assembly Room, Leeds

Soloist: Sunwook Kim (piano) Reviewer: Ron Simpson The first Leeds Piano Festival runs from May 14th to 23rd, celebrating the famous Leeds International Piano Competition with concerts at the Wigmore Hall, London, and the Howard Assembly Room, Leeds. Sunwook Kim, who won the “Leeds” in 2006 at the age of 18, presented a varied programme at the Howard, technically spectacular ...

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Friday Night Classics: First Ladies of Swing – Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Conductor: Guy Barker Reviewer: Selwyn Knight With a wry smile, Clare Teal explains that this concert, First Ladies of Swing, has been two years in the planning.  Since its genesis, there was the Swing Jazz Prom in 2017 that featured tonight’s guest vocalists – all of whom are male. Later, conductor Guy Barker leads a tribute that he arranged to ‘that ...

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The String Quartet’s Guide to Sex and Anxiety – The HOUSE, Birmingham REP

Creator and Director: Calixto Bieito Reviewer: Selwyn Knight Creator and Director, Calixto Bieito, says that he has suffered from an anxiety disorder since childhood but didn’t know until 20 years ago, explaining the choice of subject matter in The String Quartet’s Guide to Sex and Anxiety. In creating the piece, he’s taken writing from a range of writers from Robert ...

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The Albert Lee Band: Live – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Dave Cunningham Albert Lee opens his set at The Lowry with something of a mission statement – a blistering cover of I’m Ready that confirms his willingness and ability to rock’n’roll all night.  Lee has played sideman / lead guitar for some of the greatest acts in popular music, which gives him legitimate access to a superb back catalogue. ...

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The Rat Pack Live from Las Vegas – Darlington Hippodrome

Director & Choreographer: Mitch Sebastian Reviewer: Mark Clegg Established in the 1950s but only cementing their brand of high-spirited bonhomie in their appearances together in the 1960s, The Rat Pack pretty much invented ‘cool’. A group of entertainers headed up by Frank Sinatra and consisting of four other core members including Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr, they appeared in ...

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Kim Wilde: Here Come The Aliens – The Lowry, Salford

Reviewer: Helen Jones Back in 1981, the then 20-year-old Kim Wilde released her debut singleKids In America. A huge success reaching number two in the charts. Hit followed hit. Wilde became an icon of the 80s, being awarded The Brit for Best Female Vocalist in 1983. Fast forward thirty-seven years and Kim Wilde is out on tour and a new ...

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