Tag Archive: music


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    The Bath Festival, which will see some of the biggest names in literature and music appearing in venues across Bath from 19 to 28 May, has just announced their programme of free entertainment for families during the festival week. There will be a variety of free creative workshops and circus skills classes, plus live music, theatre and poetry performances by local students and young people. Workshops will be booked on a first come, first served basis so arrive early to avoid disappointment.

    All of these activities will take place in Queen Square, Milsom Street, Southgate, Kingsmead Square, Old Bond Street and at the festival hub on Alfred Street from 10 – 5pm on 20, 21, 25, 26, 27 & 28 May

    Highlights by day

    Friday 19th May, 6pm to 11.30pm

    The festival kicks off with Party in the City on 19th May, Bath’s biggest night of free music, which will see over 2,000+ performer entertaining people across the city to celebrate the opening of the festival. The streets, parks and venues of Bath with be filled with a multitude of arts from electro-swing to cheerleading to Chinese shadow-puppetry. The city will come alive with folk, rock, classical, jazz, acoustic, swing and soul. See full listings

    Saturday 20th May, 10am to 5pm

    Kids can ‘Jump In’ to activities from 10am onwards in Alfred Street by helping to build a coral reef and underwater world inspired by their imaginations and the sea creatures in this creative space. Edwina Bridgeman will help children create their own sea creatures using recycled and reclaimed materials at 11am, 2pm and 4pm.

    Flies Fly Away (aka Louis Campbell) will perform at 2pm in Kingsmead Square. Louis’ roots are in traditional folk music but he definitely has a modern electronic sound that will appeal to fans of alternative music. Indie Pop, R&B singer and songwriter, Ollie Ciaran, will follow with an array of original songs with a few covers that everyone will recognise at 2.45pm. See the full listings of free events for 20 May

    Southgate Stage will be packed with a variety of poets such as Rhyme and Reason who will perform at 11.45am.  They are a poetry collective who produce live spoken word poetry events across the South West. Look out for The Shuks from Bath Spa University at 2.30pm.  They’re a raw, powerful and dissonant post punk band inspired by the likes of The Pixies, Sonic Youth and The Clash. RSC commissioned, previous Glastonbury Slam Champion, Toby Thompson will take to the stage at 3.30pm.  He’s a regular on the festivals and events scene having appeared at WOMAD, Shambala, Cheltenham Literature, Leipzig Book Fair (Germany), Harare International Festival Of The Arts (Zimbabwe) and the Natural History Museum. Not forgetting The Supernatural Disco Band at 4.15pm who’ll perform dance floor classics, taking inspiration from New York clubs of the 70s such as Larry Levan’s Paradise Garage, Studio 54 and The Loft.  If you love the recent Netflix hit ‘The Get Down’, you’ll love this.

    Sunday 21st May, 10am to 5pm

    On Alfred Street, Meridian Duo will run workshops that allow children to experience story through live music at 11am, 2pm and 4pm. They will listen to magical stories, set to music on marimba and percussion, and get involved in playing, singing, acting and dancing to bring these tales to life.

    Hot Steppers, the Moorland Road all-female Morris dancing group, will perform in Kingsmead Square at 11.30am and 3.30pm. Sam Eason, a prolific singer-songwriter inspired by the likes of Bob Dylan and James Taylor, is on at 2pm.  An emerging talent, his songs will pull at the heart-strings.

    Just 3 Harmony Trio, who have been described as a ‘Pitch Perfect’ vocal harmony group, will sing passionate renditions of pop and soul numbers on the Southgate Stage at 1.15pm. 4th Project close at 3.30pm with their soulful vocals, electric guitar and live electronics which reflect their love of trip hop, soul, pop, electronic dance music and 90s R’n’B! See the full listings of free events for Sunday 21 May

    Thursday 25th & Friday 26th May, 10am to 5pm

    The Bath Spa Performance Poets will perform on Old Bond Street on both days at 1.15pm and throughout the festival. A number of schools will perform on the Southgate Stage: Twerton Infants School and St Michaels Primary School at 12.30pm on 25th; Oldfield Park Junior School at 11am and Ubley Primary School at 12.30pm on 26th. City of Bath College will perform at various times on both days.

    See the full listings of free events for Thursday 25 May.
    See the full listings of free events for Friday 26 May

    Saturday 27th May, 10am to 5pm

    Aaron Samuel will give the audience an outburst of raw, acoustic energy on Old Bond Street at 12.30pm. He’s 20 year old singer with an extraordinary ability to channel emotions into a tidal wave of words. Isobel Holly will also perform here at 3.30pm and despite her tender age, she has an enviable songwriting prowess that bonds engaging prose to memorable melody.

    Absorbed by Sound kick off the day on the Southgate Stage at 11am. They’re a small inclusive group of disabled and non disabled musicians who have come together to create, perform and record music using a wide range of music technology and traditional instruments. The Theatre Royal Bath Theatre School will present a work-in-progress sharing their brand new devised performance ‘Nothing to See Here’ at 2pm; and Saint Loe will close at 4.15pm with their nostalgic yet modern-day pop sound. See the full listings for free festival events on Saturday 27 May

    Sunday 28th May, 10am to 5pm      

    In Southgate, look out for Tea and Biscuits on stage at 2pm who comprise of quirky tea drinking solo artist Just Parsons and fingerstyle guitar player Ned Smith, they come to bring you a new take on acoustic music. They’re followed by We are the Parkas at 2.45pm who are one of Bath Spa University most promising bands, delivering indie music with lashings of rock and roll. Signe, a Bath based singer songwriter originally from Norway, will close at 3.30pm with her characteristic voice and melodic pop songs.

    At 12.30pm on Old Bond Street, group of students from Hayesfield School known as the Hayesfield Papernation Poets will perform an original piece of work created with spoken word artists, Rebecca Tantony and Maliaka Kegode.  This is a joint project between Bath Festivals and Paper Nations.

    The much loved Family Arts Day will take place once again in Parade Gardens between 11am and 3pm. It’s a great opportunity for families to explore music, art and creative writing. There’ll also be live music on the bandstand and a musical treasure hunt. See the full free festival event listings for Sunday 28 May

    Tickets to other events offered by The Bath Festival can be bought online at our What’s On pages

    –           Bath Box Office from 10.30am to 5pm

    –           Bath Box Office 01225 463362.

  2. JUMP IN! The Bath Festival key dates for your diary

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    The Bath Festival is a new flagship festival for Bath – 10 days and 130+ events featuring the biggest and brightest names in literature, words and music – celebrating the world heritage city of Bath from 19 – 28th May 2017.  The festival supersedes the Bath Literature and Bath International Music Festival.

    JUMP IN! 130+ events are now available to book online What’s On

    How to Book
    In person at Bath Box Office
    By telephone on 01225 463362
    Online at What’s On
    By post to Bath Box Office
    Booking opens at 10.30am (online, telephone and counter)

    View the online brochure or to receive a copy of the 2017 Festival brochure (posted to subscribers on 6 February) please call Bath Box Office on 01225 463362


  3. 2016 Party in the City and Bath International Music Festival

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    The festival began with Bath’s Biggest Free night of music Party in the City. 40 venues, 2 new outdoor festival stages in Parade Gardens and Queen Square and schools, bands, choirs all performing and continued over 10 days.

    Take a look at the 2016 Festival in our Festival Gallery view gallery

    zulu for mail chimp          bohos        kansas      sholmo      canzonn

  4. The Bath International Music Festival heads to a venue near you!

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    In less than three weeks time, Bath International Music Festival brings acclaimed folk and acoustic acts to communities in Midsomer Norton, Radstock, Paulton and Keynsham. From the beautifully crafted songs of Nuala Honan to the energetic performance of Gaz Brookfield, don’t miss out on what promises to be an excellent series of events.

    Nuala Honan – Book here 

    Kicking things off for us at Midsomer Norton Town Hall on Saturday, May 21 is Nuala Honan. Originally from rural Australia, Nuala followed her family’s musical heritage to England after winning Most Outstanding Female Vocalist at the South Australian Music Industry Awards and has performed at major festivals including Glastonbury, Bestival and Womad.

    Nuala’s vocals give you goose bumps within seconds and her beautifully crafted songs leave you wanting to discover more. Nuala’s passion for local music has led to her setting up weekly music nights in Bristol and it’s clear that music is in her blood.

    Supporting Nuala on the night are Emi McDade and Simon Allen.

    Emi is an 18 year old bursting with talent. In 2014, she was named Gloucestershire Solo Artist of the Year and has since been supported by BBC Introducing, as well as becoming a finalist in the 2015 Song Academy Young Songwriter of the Year.

    Simon writes songs about love, loss and everything in between. Born in Northern Ireland and now living in Radstock, Simon has a beautifully crafted guitar style and a voice to match, as well as skilful song writing. Simon was the winner of the Bath Folk Festival ‘New Shoots’ competition in 2014.


    Sam Eason – Book here 

    Just down the road at Paulton Library on Thursday, 26 May the most intimate show of the festival takes place, as Sam Eason headlines an evening of blissful folk music. Sam is a prolific singer-songwriter inspired by the likes of Bob Dylan and James Taylor, and if you’re looking for an evening of heart-strings being pulled at, this is the gig for you!

    Since honing his craft at open mic nights, Sam has headlined The Fleece in Bristol as well as supporting David McAlmont, Sandi Thom, Scott Matthews, Winter Mountain and James Vincent McMorrow among others. Sam has released six EP’s including 2014’s ‘Leave The Dark Low’ and ‘Live at the Fleece’ which captures him at his very best.

    Supporting Sam in Paulton is Lauren Castle.

    Lauren is one of the most exciting up and coming singer-songwriters in the West Country and has already released a successful EP in 2014 (‘Vintage Dress’). She has performed across the county and beyond for the last two years including a spot on the Bath Music Festival’s bandstand at Parade Gardens in 2015!

    Acoustic Showcase – Free Event! Please click here for more details

    The following day will showcase the fruits of months of hard work by a group of Bath College students in collaboration with Bath Festivals at Bonzo Lounge, Keynsham on Friday 27 May. The group have been working towards a BET (Bath Education Trust) Award since December which has seen them plan, curate and produce this special FREE gig for the Music Festival.

    Headlined by local band Stone Cold Fiction and featuring open mic spots alongside other top local names, this is the culmination of a series of workshops that have helped this dedicated team to produce what is guaranteed to be a night of great music by some of the best local talent around.


    Gaz Brookfield – Book here

    Concluding this series of concerts on Saturday, May 28, we head to Radstock to partner with DNA Arts for an exciting day of arts and music that will see Gaz Brookfield headline the finale of ‘Round About Radstock’ at Victoria Hall. The day time event will see local arts and music in full flow across Radstock and if you collect five stamps on the special Round About Radstock Passport you will receive £1 off a ticket to see Gaz in action that evening. (Note: £1 can be redeemed back on the door for anyone who buys an advanced ticket).

    Gaz is no stranger to Victoria Hall having played the venue last year to a packed crowd and you simply won’t want to miss one of the finest and most energetic performers around. His original songs tell the tale of a musician who does what he loves to get from one town to the next.

    Gaz remains the only unsigned solo artist to sell out The Fleece, Bristol – a feat he has now achieved four times, the last two selling out over six months in advance,

    Often playing as many as 200 gigs a year, Gaz’s relentless and never-ending tour schedule takes him to every corner of the country and beyond. The last few years saw him play at over 100 UK festivals, including Glastonbury, Beautiful Days, Bearded Theory and many more, firmly cementing him as a festival favourite.

    So pack out Victoria Hall and get ready to end a memorable day on the highest of highs!

  5. Party in the City 2016: Bath’s Biggest Free Night of Music is taking Performer Applications Now..

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    Party in the City is Bath’s biggest, free night of music and performance.

    Every May, to mark the opening night of the 10 day The Bath International Music Festival, Party in the City celebrates the panoramic local music scene and vibrant cultural life that Bath and its surrounding areas have to offer.

    Last year, the biggest in the history of Party in The City, 48 venues opened their doors to over 2000 performers and 20,000 audience members.

    This year on 20th May 2016, we are coordinating an exciting programme of free events across the city of Bath, including fantastic street theatre, processions and dance that will bring the city centre alive with music and dancing and we are now taking performer applications.

    We consider all applications that encompass performing and visual arts; from bands to bhangra and DJs to opera, if you have an innovative performance, spectacular collaboration or something completely different that you think could be in Party in the City, we would love to hear from you!

    If you would like to submit a performer application form, please read the PitC information sheet and send a completed application form to pitc2016@bathfestivals.org.uk by 31st December.

    PitC 2016 Information Sheet & Application Form

    Follow the application process above and if you think you could be our next Headline Act put ‘Headline Submission’ in the subject title of your email.

    Want to see who performed last year? Check out the 2105 Party in the City line up here

    Gallery of Images from 2015 Party in The City Click Here

  6. The Bath International Music Festival Opening Weekend: From smoke-filled, heaving underground bars of the 30s and 40s to the wiles and charms of La Traviata’s Violetta

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    Art is the way we decorate our personal space, but music is how we decorate our time, and time was of the essence this weekend at Bath’s International Music Festival. Wherever you go in the city, it’s hard not to hear music and life. Bands rehearsing in pubs, street performers and samba bands filling the streets with drums and trumpets; you can tell that Bath is gearing up for something big. Party in the City kicked off the festival on Friday, with over 150 artists showcasing their music at 43 different venues. With such a packed schedule, I had my work cut out picking some highlights.

    Down The Rabbit Hole was the festival opener, an Alice in Wonderland themed journey into a child’s imagination. There’s something incredibly whimsical and nostalgic about Alice in Wonderland, and this was a really pleasant peak back into my own childhood. Plus, who could possibly resist the sight of proud kids and proud parents showing off all their hard work. Another must-mention were the Funkinsteins at St James Wine Vaults, an all female band throwing down funk tunes you can really dance to. If you ever get chance to see them live, I can’t recommend it enough. Excellent slap bass and an awesome vocalist.

    A quick skip across town and I made it to Parade Gardens with minutes to spare. The festival’s headline act, Bite the Buffalo, were moments away from introducing themselves. If you’re planning to see Robert Plant this year, you’ll catch them supporting him with their own version of Stomp Rock Blues. The brothers from Zambia have previously been spotted on the Glastonbury BBC stage, and really rounded off my Friday night perfectly with something a little different with a lot of heart in a fiery performance that packed a big punch.

    Saturday came around far too quickly with much to see across the city. Wassily Kandinsky once said ‘The Soul is the piano with many strings’, a sentiment I couldn’t help seeing in Steven Osborne as he performed to a packed out venue for his much anticipated piano recital. I’ve never been to a piano recital before, but after witnessing Steven’s effortless musical assault on a grand piano I will definitely make an effort to go to more. His set – themed ‘Russian Fireworks’ – was outstanding, a real spine-tingling breath of fresh air after a night of rock and funk that left me pretty awed and regretting ever giving up lessons all those years ago.

    My final date was with The Hot Sardines – so in demand that an extra show was added to accommodate their growing fanbase. An eclectic group of musicians that play music from a bygone era with a modern twist, The Hot Sardines really throw themselves into their sound, and if I closed my eyes I lost myself a little in smoke-filled, heaving underground bars of the 30s and 40s.

    To round off the weekend, I took up an invitation to Violetta’s Party; a Sunday evening of opera arias, with more than a few surprises, enhanced by the Bath Spa University Operatic Chorus. Alinka Kozari led as Violetta Valéry, accompanied by tenor Gerard Schneider, mezzo Marianne Vidal, and bass-baritone Szymon Wach. The chandeliers that glittered above Bath’s banqueting hall completed the illusion, as we all fell victim to the wiles and charms of Violetta and her guests. It was truly a provocative and involving opera that had all of us laughing and cheering by the end.

    The festival continues to rage and there’s a lot to see and hear. This evening the beautiful sounds of the Welsh harp and West African kora brought together by Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita and one of the world’s leading organists Thomas Trotter with an evening recital in the beautiful surroundings of Bath Abbey on Wednesday night. Matthew Shipp, dubbed one of the most daring and original pianists in jazz by Rolling Stone, is at the University of Bath Saturday evening, accompanied by bassist and rising figure in the American jazz scene Michael Bisio. Another unmissable act if you love quirky, bold music are Moltov Jukebox, performing at Komedia Thursday night. They’re an explosive London six-piece with a unique take on what they call ‘Tropical Gypsy Dance’, guaranteed to get you moving. Or, if you’re in the mood for something a little more relaxed, check out Jess Vincent. Vincent is a singer/songwriter who also plays guitar, uke and shruti box. She’s launching her new album Shine this Friday at Keynsham’s Community Space.

    By Laura Greenfield

    View the full 2015 Festival line- up which runs until Tuesday 26 May here

    Bath Box Office 01225 463362



  7. The 2015 Bath International Music Festival: Bringing the Best of Classical, Jazz, World and Folk to Bath. Priority Booking Now Open

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    Priority booking for the 2015 Bath International Music Festival is now open. There is still time, ahead of General Booking opening on 24 March to become a Friend and secure seats ahead of the queues on Tuesday.

    The 2015 Bath International Bath Music Festival opens on 15 May with Party in the City and continues until Sir Willard White’s festival finale on Tuesday 26 May. We very much hope you will join us at the Festival in its 67th year, bringing the very best of Classical, Jazz, World and Folk to Bath. Celebrated names playing the Festival in Bath in May include Festival Artist in Residence Steven Osborne, his three concerts during the Festival have been picked by BBC Music Magazine as one of the ‘Top 20 UK Unmissable Events’; we also welcome jazz legend Hugh Masekela and many more. Here’s an overview of the exciting line-up. General Booking opens Tuesday 24 March.

    Classical Programme

    We are delighted to have attracted some of the world’s finest soloists and groups in 2015. Amongst them is Festival Artist in Residence one of the great pianists of his generation Steven Osborne; vocal legend Willard White and world famous organist Thomas Trotter. Prizewinning ensembles such as The Cremona Quartet, the Dunedin Consort, early music vocal ensemble Stile Antico and a very special gig at Cleveland Pools, the UK’s only surviving Georgian lido, from Red Note Scotland’s leading contemporary music ensemble– a do not miss.

    2012 BBC Young Musician of the Year Laura Van Der Heijden performs with the European Union Chamber Orchestra; Schubert by Peter Manning and Renato Belsadonna, leading Harpsichord player and Bach authority John Butt, a series of exceptional lunchtime concerts and world class opera from Iford Arts.

    Jazz, World and Folk

    Creating an instant party, with the soaring horn echoing township jazz, hip-hop and funk, is South African jazz legend Hugh Masekela and his band. Other highlights of this stellar 2015 line-up include probably the best jazz band in New York The Hot Sardines. Orphy Robinson / Black Top; Jason Rebello and Gwilym Simcock, Gwyneth Herbert, Matthew Ship and Michael Bisio.

    Mike Westbrook performing Glad Day. Rising star of traditional English folksong Emily Portman in a new collaboration with Sam Sweeney from Bellowhead. The beautiful sounds of Welsh and Senegalese harps from Catrin Finch and Seckou Keita; Alash masters of Tuvan throat singing from Siberia and a screening of the 1924 silent movie He Who Gets Slapped with live music from Will Gregory, co-founder of Goldfrapp and Tony Orrell.

    Also on offer a guaranteed party with the Tropical-Gypsy-Dance sounds of Natalia Tena (Game of Thrones, Harry Potter) and her band Molotov Jukebox.

    All that and a ‘bring your family’ event with House Gospel Choir at Komedia. House anthems and gospel made for dancing, as seen at Glastonbury.