What’s on at Town Hall/Symphony Hall

A new season featuring contemporary, jazz, folk, world and roots music from artists including Laura Marling, the Portico Quartet, Jack Bruce, the Imagined Village and the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain amongst others is now on sale at Birmingham Town Hall and Symphony Hall.

Jack Bruce

Jack Bruce

Between January and June 2012, the two venues will present a programme of over twenty ticketed events and in excess of forty free events spanning music from across the globe.

54 years after releasing a live recording at the Town Hall, Chris Barber returns to the venue for a gig with his Big Band and the mighty Acker Bilk and his Paramount Jazz Band on 3rd February.

Martin Simpson – up for Best Album and Musician of the Year in the 2012 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards – performs with his trio (Andy Cutting on melodeon and Andy Seward on bass) at Town Hall on Sunday 5th February.

Featuring an all-star cast of fifteen including singer-songwriter Eddi Reader, Pentangle founder and bassist Danny Thompson, US vocalist and guitarist Raul Malo and musical directors Jerry Douglas and Aly Bain MBE amongst its number, BBC Four’s Transatlantic Sessions rolls into Symphony Hall on 8th February.

Following a unique tour taking in some of Britain’s best loved Cathedrals; the 2011 Best British Female Solo Artist Brit Award winner and Mercury Prize nominee Laura Marling debuts at Symphony Hall on Friday 2nd March.

Time Gentlemen Please!, the creation from Yorkshire folk innovators The Demon Barbers which sees B-Boys and Morris dancers team up for extravagant performance of hip-hop and folk music and dance, visits the Town Hall on Friday 2rd March.

Mercury-nominated four-piece jazz experimentalists the Portico Quartet return on 7th March at the Town Hall, performing material from their third and self-titled album, to be released on Real World Records in early 2012.

Fairport Convention, folk rock legends and ‘Britain’s friendliest band’ head to the Town Hall for a concert on Friday 9th March.

Texan folkabilly musician and Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter Nanci Griffith brings her influential political commentary and traditional music to the Town Hall with on Monday 12th March.

Hot on her heels comes Joan Baez, accomplished American folk singer with over 50 years of performing, a passion for social activism and 30 albums in eight different languages to her credit. An Evening with Joan Baez is on Tuesday 13rd March at Symphony Hall.

Close-harmony and funk-jazz singer Caro Emerald kicks off the first night of a mini-UK tour at Symphony Hall on Thursday 15th March in support of debut album Deleted Scenes From The Cutting Room Floor.

Five comic maestros and over 100 instruments, the Spaghetti Western Orchestra, bring Ennio Morricone scores such as The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and For A Few Dollars More to life on stage at on Friday 16th March at the Town Hall.

For the third year running, one of Ireland’s best known musical exports the Dubliners choose Birmingham Town Hall to play on St Patrick’s Day night – celebrating 50 years in the business on Saturday 17th March.

Legendary Cream bassist and songwriter-storyteller Jack Bruce performs with his Big Blues Band on Thursday 29th March at the Town Hall.

Singer-songwriter Charlie Landsborough, awarded Best Male in the British Country Music Awards three years in succession, heads to the Town Hall on Friday 30th March.

Roberto Fonseca, pianist, co-producer of Ibrahim Ferrer’s last album and former member of Buena Vista Social Club, is joined by hot cello and vocal talent Ayanna for a night of Afro-Cuban-British sounds on Sunday 1st April at the Town Hall.

Kailash Kher, the celebrated Indian singer and composer, performs a selection of his big Bollywood hits plus new material and favourites from the world-renowned Pakistani musician Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan on Wednesday 4th April at Symphony Hall.

Country legend Don Williams performs on Tuesday 1st May at Symphony Hall.

Folk-world supergroup the Imagined Village return for a night of genre smashing music at the Town Hall on Monday 21st May.

The Chieftains – a six-time Grammy award winning band – also mark 50 years of bringing traditional music to the world with a concert on Tuesday 5th June at Symphony Hall.

The much-loved Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain celebrate music penned by the founding father of folk on Thursday 28 June at Birmingham Town Hall with the specially commissioned concert The Cecil Sharp Songbook: Waly Waly on the Ukulele.

Paul Keene, Director of Programming, said, “2012 sees Symphony Hall begin its 21st Anniversary celebrations alongside our continuing commitment to developing Town Hall as a world-class venue for wonderful and distinctive music-making. We’re doubly thrilled, therefore, to be delivering another season of exciting concerts featuring outstanding artists both new and established.”

In addition to ticketed events, music fans can get their fix of jazz, folk and world music for free at the weekly Rush Hour Blues and monthly Mid-day Mantra, Folk For Free and Sax in the City sessions in the Symphony Hall Cafe Bar.

For more details and to book tickets tel: 0121 780 3333 or visit www.thsh.co.uk