The Week in Light & Sound
Tuesday, 28 November 2023
Palace News - Chaka Khan is celebrating 50 years in the music business with a concert at Blenheim Palace. The 10-time Grammy winner, who turned 70 in March, will appear on a triple bill alongside Sister Sledge and The Fatback Band on 13 June. The concert is part of Blenheim's five-night Nocturne Live concert series, which takes place from 12 to 16 June. Crowded House, Sheryl Crow and Turin Brakes are already confirmed to appear at Blenheim on the closing night.
Crazy Prices - Dominic West has criticised “crazy” ticket prices in the West End, claiming theatre is “more tangible” outside of London. The actor, who will play Eddie Carbone in Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge at Ustinov Studio in Bath next year, said high ticket prices were a “bad thing”. His statement comes after David Tennant also hit out at the “ludicrous” cost of West End tickets in August, saying that the future of theatregoing was at risk because of it.
West, in an interview with The Times, said high prices meant "only a certain small group of people will be going to the theatre and probably not enjoying it much". He added: “You get a lot of tourists in London and people are not necessarily [in the theatre] because they want to be there… it is because it is part of the tourist trail.”
Rising Stars - Caity Baser, The Last Dinner Party and Sekou have been announced as the nominees in the running for this year's Brit Rising Star award. The winner will claim the title from Flo, who were recognised in 2023. Other previous winners since the prize category was created in 2008 include Adele, Sam Fender and Jorja Smith. The award, supported by BBC Radio 1, recognises UK artists who haven't achieved a top 20 album or more than one top 20 single by 31 October.
On The Move - A music summer school and festival that has been held in Devon for 75 years will be held in Norfolk in 2024. The Dartington Summer School and Festival recently revealed the event would no longer take place on the historic Dartington estate. It followed the stepping down of both the Dartington Trust's artistic director and summer school team. The Dartington International Summer School Foundation has taken over running the 80 music classes for pro and amateur musicians, and said it would hold the event at Gresham’s School in Holt.
In The Saleroom - David Bowie's handwritten lyric sheet for two of his songs could fetch up to £100,000 when it is sold by Omega Auctions today. They contain the late singer's corrections, drafts and notes when creating his tracks Rock n Roll Suicide and Suffragette City. Both feature on his 1972 album I>The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust. The auction house previously sold a page of Bowie's handwritten lyrics for his hit Starman for £165,000.
His Master’s Voice - HMV's flagship record store has been reopened by pop band Madness on Oxford Street following a four-year hiatus. The century-old music chain closed its main London branch in 2019 after going into administration. It was then taken over by Sunrise Records. The company said its return was due to a ‘dramatic turnaround,’ with HMV returning to profit in 2022. Owner Doug Putman said the reopening would lead to HMV "once again becoming a mainstay on the UK High Street".
Headliners - Fred Again, Lana Del Rey and Catfish and the Bottlemen have been announced as headliners of next year's Reading and Leeds festivals. Blink-182 and Liam Gallagher will also be playing the main stages. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of Oasis' Definitely Maybe, Liam Gallagher will be playing the album in full.
(Jim Evans)
28 November 2023

Latest Issue. . .