Billy Bragg, Mark Kermode, Soweto Kinch and Tokyo String Quartet amongst names for Bath Music Festival


Bath International Music Festival 2011 takes place in various venues throughout Somerset from the 25th May – 5th June 2011. Billy Bragg, Mark Kermode, Soweto Kinch, Ute Lemper and Tokyo String Quartet are amongst the eclectic cast of global performers for Bath’s annual multi-venue musical celebration.

Bath International Music Festival 2011 will see the biggest and most varied collection of artists and performers in the festival’s 63-year history as the city’s venues will be treated to 70 events showcasing the best in jazz, orchestral, cabaret, classical, folk, contemporary and world music, as well as film.

Kicking off with the Opening Night Concert on Wednesday 25th May at the historic Bath Abbey, the line-up for this year’s twelve day event includes internationally renowned violinist Alina Ibragimova, singer/songwriter Billy Bragg, jazz rapper Soweto Kinch, Tokyo String Quartet, sultry songstress Ute Lemper and television film-critic Mark Kermode who will be playing with his blues band, The Dodge Brothers.

2010’s programme was the biggest and boldest yet with a focus on dance that brought the prestigious English National Ballet to Bath Abbey. 2011 promises to be even bigger, with events and performances being categorised under this year’s Festival Themes of ‘Fire in the Flint’, ‘Songs of Freedom’, ‘Latina Heights’ and ‘Russian Weddings’. Visitors should keep an eye out for the ‘Made for Bath’ logo, indicating special shows that feature innovative productions or unusual collaborations – such as Natalie Clein performing the World Premiere of ‘Turquoise Black’, composed by Guillemots’ Fyfe Dangerfield – whilst the ‘Family Friendly’ symbol highlights performances that are best enjoyed by all the family.

The festival closes on Sunday 5th June with a day of celebrations commemorating performer and activist Paul Robeson, culminating in a night of moving musical theatre from Kurt Weill and collaborator Bertolt Brecht at the aptly named ‘Brecht and Weill Night’. Headlining this closing night party will be multi-award winning English vocalist, actress and mother to current pop ingénue Eliza Doolittle, Frances Ruffelle, who will be joined by Olivier-award winning stage actor Clive Rowe and popular Only Fools & Horses actor Roger Lloyd Plack.

This year’s Bath International Music Festival will include the usual array of free to the public outdoor events for visitors, with the highlight being ‘Party in the City’ on Friday 27th May, the biggest free show in Bath, where buildings and public spaces are taken over across the city.

‘Party in the City’ will begin with the traditional Schools Procession before making its way to Bath Abbey for the Festival Commission, where hundreds of local school children will star in an ambitious musical piece entitled ‘Talking about Us’ – which has been specially created by Brazilian composer and percussionist Adriano Adewale. The party ends with a spectacular fireworks display and performance from Adewale’s hot samba octet Umpatacum.

Bath’s local community will be able to take part in a selection of workshops and classes during the festival, including a Piano Masterclass with Bath Festival’s own Artistic Director, Joanna MacGregor, on Friday 3rd June.

Commenting on this year’s Bath International Music Festival, Artistic Director, Joanna MacGregor said:

“Since the festival’s birth in 1948, it’s earned a well-deserved reputation for showcasing some of the world’s best artistic and musical talent, and we hope to continue this with the line-up we’ve been fortunate to secure for 2011. The festival is a celebration of music from around the world, but hasn’t lost sight of its routes or the local community, meaning it’s a great way for all the family to see an array of music in the city’s picturesque and historic buildings. We hope as many people as possible can join us to help make this another memorable year”.

Other notable artists on the line-up for this year’s festival include Kansas country-rockers, The Wilders, the Arte Corale of Moscow choir, cult Australian jazz band, The Necks and bass-baritone, Sir Willard White. Education programmes will run throughout Bath International Music Festival and all year round.

Bath International Music Festival takes place across various venues in Bath from 25th May – 5th June 2011. Prices vary.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.