Top music line-up for Kenilworth Arts Festival 2018

Top music line-up for Kenilworth Arts Festival 2018


MOBO Award-winning pianist Zoe Rahman, and BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winners Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are among the musical attractions at the third Kenilworth Arts Festival (Thursday 20 to Saturday 29 September 2018).

Joining them on the eclectic bill are over 40 acclaimed writers, musicians and artists including US songwriter S. Carey, Elbow approved Californian singer-songwriter Jesca Hoop, and multi-instrumentalist Erland Cooper.

Among the writers appearing at Great British Bake Off finalist Ruby Tandoh, Man Booker Prize nominated author Donal Ryan, nature writer John Lewis-Stempel, novelist Fiona Mozley, and Brum-born scribe Mike Gayle (whose latest book, The Man I Think I Know is set in and around Coventry and Kenilworth).


Thursday 21 September 2018
Zoe Rahman: Solo Piano
St. John's Church
A MOBO Award winner, Mercury Prize nominee, Jazz FM Award nominee and British Jazz Award winner, Zoe Rahman has established herself as a unique presence in British music. Known for her powerful technique, wide-ranging imagination and exuberant performance, she has become a highly sought-after musician, working most recently with the likes of George Mraz, Courtney Pine and Jerry Dammers' Spatial AKA Orchestra.
Zoe's latest album, Dreamland, showcases the depth and breadth of her musical imagination, featuring new compositions alongside tracks by Duke Ellington, Jessica Williams, Rabindranath Tagore, as well as solo renditions of some of Zoe's back catalogue.

Sunday 23 September 2018
Rihab Azar
United Reformed Church
Rihab was born in the Syrian city of Homs, to a musical family. Her father made her first oud and started teaching her when she was 7-years-old. Since 2015, Rihab has performed around the UK as a soloist and as a member of various ensembles, and she founded Zamaan Trio in 2017. Rihab has a strong connection with her Syrian and Arabic musical roots and has performed at iconic venues such as the Royal Albert Hall, Lambeth Palace, St. Paul's Cathedral, SOAS University, and The National Museum of Denmark.

Monday 24 September 2018
Emily Francis Trio
Holiday Inn
The Emily Francis Trio is one of the hottest acts on the UK jazz scene. Featuring Emily Francis (piano, keyboards), Trevor Boxall (bass), and Jamie Murray (drums), the group's fresh and original take on the piano trio format mixes influences from late 60s/70s electronic jazz, progressive rock and pop, Scandinavia, and the current New York scene, to create compositionally rich original music, with a strong emphasis on melody and groove.

Wednesday 26 September 2018
Erland Cooper
St. Nicholas' Church
Erland Cooper is an award-winning, multi-instrumentalist and producer who was born and raised on the archipelago of Orkney, Scotland. Having previously released critically acclaimed albums with The Magnetic North and Erland and the Carnival, Erland released his debut solo album, Solan Goose, in spring 2018.

Thursday 27 September 2018
Josienne Clarke & Ben Walker
Tudor Stables, Kenilworth Castle
Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker are five albums and a couple of EPs into a partnership that blends Walker's intricate guitar playing and arrangements with Clarke's compelling songwriting. After self-releasing their first three albums and picking up a BBC Radio 2 Folk Award in the process, Clarke & Walker signed to Rough Trade Records in 2016. Both Richard Thompson and Robert Plant are big fans!

Friday 28 September 2018
Jesca Hoop
St. John's Church
Over the past decade, Hoop has released several acclaimed studio albums and worked with a stellar cast of musicians including Guy Garvey (Elbow) and Sam Beam (Iron & Wine). Love Letter for Fire, her duets record with Beam, was a standout album of 2016. Her latest album, Memories Are Now, was released last year to enormous critical acclaim.

Saturday 29 September 2018
S. Carey
St. John's Church
S. Carey is the moniker of American singer-songwriter Sean Carey, who is perhaps best known as the drummer, keyboard player and supporting vocalist of the Grammy-winning band Bon Iver.
In between tours, Carey has produced three full length solo albums. The latest album, Hundred Acres, was released in February 2018 and finds the musician at his most assured. The album features contributions from a stellar cast, including Rob Moose (yMusic), Casey Foubert (Sufjan Stevens) and Sophie Payten (Gordi).

  • Kenilworth Arts Festival tickets are on sale now, with prices ranging from £7 (for one-off events) to £45 (for a Literary Weekend Pass). For more information, including the full line-up, see:
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