Practising their scales
TAKE the plunge and explore Plymouth's first Marine City Festival, which promises a range of exciting happenings from tomorrow to Sunday, September 16.
Festival co-ordinator Katie Tokus, of Kaos Production, says: "The idea is to celebrate Plymouth's marine culture with a host of events across the academic, business, community and entertainment sectors."
Kaos has helped select a strong music programme of some of the best home-grown musical talent and special guests.
One of the most thrilling prospects is Fish Music, a Peninsular Arts initiative, by the Ten Tors Orchestra, which will take place in the Piazza on Thursday.
"The big screen will show a film of fish in front of which are musical staves which the musicians will read as notes when the fish cross them," explains Katie. "Then jazz musicians will improvise over the top. It's going to be an incredible piece of classical, jazz and general fish madness and should be a whole lot of fun!"
Particularly exciting is the return of piano man Joe Stilgoe, last seen blowing the flaps off the marquee at the Barbican International Jazz and Blues festival 2011. This world-class showman, who regularly entertains royalty and has performed for Madonna, mixes phenomenally fancy finger-work with a sublime singing voice and wry sense of humour inherited from his famous father, South Devon resident Richard.
His performance at the National Marine Aquarium (NMA) in front of the Atlantic Reef tank next Friday is not to be missed.
"We had a great response at the NMA for Preston Reed a few weeks ago," continues Katie. "The fish seemed to respond to the music – and we are delighted to use this special space again as the perfect arena to sum up what the festival is attempting to do."
If keyboard wizardry is your thing, don't miss the chance to catch award-winning Exeter jazz maestro Craig Milverton at the Refectory tomorrow night.
Another acclaimed musical visitor to look out for is Steve James, a contemporary folk, blues and roots troubadour from Texas who has toured internationally and guested on many a radio programme including Paul Jones's BBC show. He plays the B-Bar on Thursday.
Leading light of the local scene, Patrick James Pearson, will be showcasing some of the cool contemporary piano-led pop that helped win him an opening slot at Glasto last year, on Wednesday at the Refectory.
If indie rock is more your style, popular local rockers Roadside will be strutting their stuff at the Thistle Park Tavern, Coxside, tomorrow night, while on Saturday and Sunday the following weekend, Annabel's in Vauxhall Street presents popular visitors AM Preacher for a dose of raunchy roots'n'rockabilly.
There'll be live entertainment all week long at Plymouth's oldest pub, The Minerva, in Looe Street and you can find out more by visiting www.marinecityfestival.co.uk
See Film, Page 12