Colors: Red Color

It is no underestimation to say that the return of Gorillaz has been feverishly anticipated.

Last week saw the launch of Humanz, their first new studio album in 7 years, to widespread critical acclaim. Not only that, but tickets to their US live dates sold out in the blink of an eye this month, as did their headline show at the inaugural Demon Dayz Festival at Dreamland Margate this summer (less than 10 minutes, to be exact).

Now, following on from a secret London show in March – described by Time Out London as ‘’Flat-out one of the greatest gigs we've seen in a whole heap of years.’’ – the World’s Most Successful Virtual Act will hit the road across Europe this autumn, culminating in a return home to play Brighton, Glasgow, Manchester, Birmingham and London in November and December (dates below). And if recent history is anything to go by, these will go just as quickly.

The Humanz Tour will see Murdoc Niccals (bass), Noodle (guitar), Russel Hobbs (drums) and 2D (vocals) joined on stage by the Gorillaz live band – Damon Albarn, Gabriel Wallace, Mike Smith, Jesse Hackett, Jeff Wootton, Karl Vanden Bossche, Seye Adelekan – as well as selected performers from the stellar roll call of Gorillaz’ family of featured artists.

Humanz, the acclaimed new album from Gorillaz, was released on 28th April 2017 on Parlophone Records. This last month alone has seen a breath-taking amount of activity from the band - releasing 5 new tracks; scoring the most successful debut in YouTube VR history with the Jamie Hewlett-directed 360° six-minute animated film ‘Saturnz Barz (Spirit House)’; launching a mixed reality app; and enjoying another ground-breaking first when 2D and Murdoc joined Mistajam for their first ever real time interview, streamed live from London to fans around the world.

In a new and ground-breaking initiative to develop choreographers, composers and designers who show originality, insight and world-class potential but have not had the rare opportunity to work on the largest scale, Birmingham Royal Ballet (BRB), in association with Sadler’s Wells (SW), funded by Oak Foundation, are to launch Ballet Now this month.

Ballet Now is a five-year programme of professional development with two commissions made each year by BRB & SW, supporting a total of six artists per year - one choreographer, composer and designer per commission. Commissions will provide the support and freedom to champion artistic innovation, risk taking and new choreographic practice.

With mentoring from Birmingham Royal Ballet's Artistic Director David Bintley, Koen Kessels, Music Director for Birmingham Royal Ballet, and other experts in the dance industry, choreographers, composers and designers will have the opportunity to challenge their choreographic practice and develop creative collaborations for presentation on the large-scale, whilst gaining valuable skills in leading a creative process in a major ballet company.

The process will be developed and overseen by a Creative Consortium - a panel of experts drawn from across world ballet, supporting the selection of creative talent, as well as overseeing mentoring opportunities and the on-going success of the programme.

The framework established by the Creative Consortium will enable the evolution of new and innovative works and for talent to be developed within the most experienced of ballet environments, with day-to-day guidance from some of the most globally renowned experts in their field.

The Consortium consists of: David Bintley (Director, Birmingham Royal Ballet), Koen Kessels (Music Director, Birmingham Royal Ballet), Alistair Spalding (Sadler’s Wells Artistic Director and Chief Executive), Cassa Pancho (Artistic Director, Ballet Black), Ted Brandsen (Director, Dutch National Ballet), Emma Southworth (Studio Programme Senior Producer, The Royal Ballet), Sally Beamish (Composer), Sally Cavendish (Performance Music Director, Faber Music).  More to be added as confirmed

Ballet Now will also ensure the widest possible circulation of that work, developing the artistic collaborations needed to forge careers around the world by working in close partnership with some of the world’s leading Companies.

A ballet company should not be a museum,” says David Bintley, “it should be active creatively, within its artistic boundaries and also within the communities it serves. Giving an opportunity to artists to work together and take risks on this scale will be a game changer; this is not happening anywhere else in the world and we will make it happen here.”

Grammy Award-winning jazz drummer Terri Lyne Carrington makes her only UK appearance at Town Hall Birmingham

A world-renowned drummer, composer and producer Terri Lyne Carrington's talent was clear from a young age when she jammed with the likes of Dizzy Gillespie, Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Oscar Peterson. Her prestigious career has seen her perform alongside the likes of Stan Getz, Pharoah Sanders, Cassandra Wilson, Carlos Santana and Joni Mitchell.

For more than two decades, Terri has crafted an eclectic brand of jazz that incorporates elements of bebop, soul, funk and much more. Since her debut in 1989, she has established a reputation for working with artists of varying styles and perspectives to create music that adheres to the traditions of jazz yet speaks to a much broader and more diverse audience.

Her reworking of legendary Money Jungle album, accompanied by Gerald Clayton and Christian McBride, won her the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Album, making her the first female artist to win the award. This followed her first Grammy win in 2011 for her debut Mosaic Project album which featured an all-female cast including the likes of Esperanza Spalding, Dianne Reeves, and Geri Allen.

Terri visits Birmingham's Town Hall for her only UK show, and will be joined by a superb band, featuring China Moses on vocals, Helen Sung on piano, Tineke Postma on sax and Josh Hari on Bass. Toegther, they'll perform music from her acclaimed album Mosaic Project: Love and Soul.

Released in 2015, the 'Love and Soul' album featured a rotating cast of superb artists including Chaka Khan, Nancy Wilson, Natalie Cole and Lelah Hathaway, Valerie Simpson.

Terri Lyne Carrington will perform at Town Hall Birmingham on Sunday 21 May 2017.

The Nooran Sisters are far from ordinary and are destined for worldwide domination thanks to their rich family heritage in Sufi classical music. Already having headlined the prestigious Nakodar Mela in Panjab, in the presence of the legendary Gurdas Mann - the sisters, Jyoti and Sultana are without a doubt the most amazing and exciting act to come out of Panjab in recent years. 

Having caught the attention of A.R. Rahman, the music supremo enlisted the sisters for their vocals on the 2015 smash hit record, Patakha Guddi, for the film Highway starring Alia Bhatt. This resulted in the sisters being nominated for and picking up a number of industry awards. Among them were awards such as ‘Best Bollywood Song’ at the IIFA Awards and ‘Best Upcoming Female Vocalist’ at the MMA Awards. 800 million people also watched the sisters when they took the stage at the International Indian Film Awards in 2015.

Salman Khan and Amir Khan are also huge fans and have had the Nooran Sisters vocal songs for their huge films in 2016, Dangal and Sultan. With so much attention and success, the Nooran Sisters have already started touring the world to packed audiences in the USA, Canada and Australia to mention a few.

September 2017 finally is the month which is set for the Nooran Sisters to showcase their unbelievable musical talent to the UK masses. Every fan of Qawali and Sufi music is promised one thing and that is that the Nooran Sisters will blow you away with their mind-blowing live performances.

The date is set, the stage is set, and the Nooran Sisters are finally coming with their full live band to bring you a night of exquisite Sufi / Qawali / Fusion music in this fantastic venue.

This spring, arts fans visiting Macao can enjoy unprecedented choices throughout the city. Whether they want to rock out on the sand at the HUSH!! Full Music festival, take in one of over 100 performances during the Macao Arts Festival – a number of which take place at Macao's World Heritage sites – or discover global and local cinema at the new Cinematheque・ Passion in beautiful Travessa da Paixão, there's something for everyone. And many performances don't cost a single penny (or pataca!).

Here are details of the choices on offer:

New Cinematheque・Passion

Opened at the end of March, Cinematheque・Passion is a brand-new cinema, film centre and library designed to promote film culture to film lovers from Macao and around the world. Taking its name from its location in famed Travessa da Paixão – known as 'Love Lane', next to the iconic Ruins of St. Paul's – the centre will hold different thematic film festivals or programmes every month – as well as two or three films shown in Macao for the very first time!

In addition, visitors can discover the local film industry for free thanks to the Cinematheque・Passion's “Discover Macao: Local Indies Revisited” programme, which will be showing two short or feature films 'Made in Macao' for two weekends a month – free of charge!

28th Macao Arts Festival - 28th April – 31st May 2017

The Macao Arts Festival brings together theatre, dance, music, circus, multimedia and visual arts from performers from around the globe – including the US, Germany, Spain, Japan and Iceland – as well as local artists. This year's festival, now in its 28th year, is themed around 'heterotopia', exploring the diverse possibilities of space, with a number of items in the programme free-of-charge and several taking place at some of Macao's atmospheric UNESCO-listed World Heritage sites.

The month-long festival sees over 100 activities and performances, including modern dance, Cantonese Opera and theatre. This year's event will kick off with the show “Play and Play: An Evening of Movement and Music” by acclaimed US artistic director Bill T. Jones.

Other notable choices include the “Performing Arts Gala” – featuring rickshaws, percussion, fire dance, clowns and puppets; “Remote Macao” – an unconventional walking-tour theatre performance through the streets of Macao; and closing event “The Seagull” – a modern and humorous twist on Anton Chekhov's masterpiece by the Reykjavik City Theatre.

HUSH!! Full Music – Macao's Beach Party

30th April – 1st May 2017

Macao's Hác-Sá Beach, in beautiful Coloane, is ready to welcome this year's popular HUSH!! Full Music festival, which is totally free of charge! The two-day musical extravaganza sees 25 singers and groups performing on a beach stage for 15 hours as they play a variety of music genres from pop and rock to electronic and metal. International artists including Hanjin Tan, Ellen Loo and Supper Moment; and local groups such as Jun Kung, Forget the G and WhyOceans are part of the line-up.

He’s back! It’s been a busy few years for Jason since his last smash-hit stand up show, but fans of his Absolute Radio show will know this nationally acclaimed comedian hasn’t changed a bit. 'Muddle Class' promises to feature a wealth of new material about Jason growing up ‘working class’ then finding, over the years, that part of him has become ‘middle class’ - causing much confusion!   Delivered with Jason’s amiable charm and captivating wit, this is a show not to be missed.

Jason said: “Somebody said to me on my Facebook fan page, 'it's been ages since you've toured'.  I thought 'no way, it was last year wasn't it?  Anyway, long story short, they were right, it was years ago!  I just got fooled cos I've been on tour doing musicals and the last tour is repeated on Dave ja Vu 13 times a day!  So I’ve been putting some stuff together, looking at my life and how it's changed over the years, how the world has changed and how my parents haven't changed a bit!  It's going to be a great tour and I can't wait to see you there.”

Get your groove on this summer at the Montreux Jazz Festival Morocco in Marrakech, and stay in the former home of Jazz Age icon, Josephine Baker.

The name Josephine Baker is synonymous with the age of Jazz in Europe and its connections to the Belle Epoque in Marrakech. A spin-off of one of the most famous jazz festivals in the world (the Montreux Jazz Festival in Geneva), the Moroccan take on the legendary Swiss event brings the two continents together once again through music. Running from 30 June to 15 July 2017 at the Bahia Palace in Marrakech, the Festival will feature workshops, acoustic concerts and the famous Montreux Jazz Club, all in the surrounds of the evocative Red City.

Jazz fans wishing to fully immerse themselves in the genre should check into Riad Star. Previously part of a Royal Palace owned by the Pashah of Marrakech, the luxury riad welcomed Josephine Baker as a long staying guest in the early 1940s; now guests can marvel at Josephine memorabilia collected by the current owners, as well as dress up in some of her original outfits. Each of the riad's thirteen rooms contains individual touches and references to Josephine and the Jazz Age, from books to dresses and instruments. The boutique property has recently been extended to incorporate a cookery school and spacious courtyard. Perfect for a roaring '20s themed dinner party.

Castell Son Claret in Mallorca launches its fifth annual programme of exclusive opera evenings this summer. The tranquil luxury retreat welcomes three acclaimed opera acts for a series of intimate alfresco performances within the beautiful gardens of the former castle.

The series begins on 8th July with the Soloists of the Accademia Teatro alla Scala in Milan – the third year this world-famous performing arts school has visited the Castell. Seated under the stars in the hotel's fragrant Arabian gardens, guests will be treated to a magical evening of spellbinding operatics featuring highlights from the Accademia's 2017 programme.

On 29 July, celebrated soprano Sonya Yoncheva performs her summer favourites against the backdrop of the hotel's romantic surroundings. The Bulgarian opera sensation has appeared at prestigious venues worldwide including London's Royal Opera House, where her lead vocals in Bellini's Norma received critical acclaim last autumn.

The series concludes on 18 August with the Young Singers of the prestigious Salzburg Festival. The internationally renowned soloists, who have sung at the Castell every summer since the launch of its exclusive events programme, will perform an eclectic range of pieces including classics and a few surprise numbers.

Tickets to Castell Son Claret's exclusive opera evenings are priced from €195 and include a welcome cocktail reception, wine, soft drinks and a special three-course gala. The chefs of the hotel's Olivera restaurant have devised the menu to incorporate the finest local ingredients and each course will be served in between musical performances from the operatic guests.

A historic nineteenth century former castle just outside the village of Calvía, Castell Son Claret has 38 elegant suites and rooms located in seven buildings.  Surrounded by Arabian gardens and the fragrance of bergamot, grapefruit, orange, rose and jasmine, the rooms have an elegant and contemporary design, many notable for their terrace or gardens and others for their private pools.

Castell Son Claret is located at the foot of the UNESCO protected La Tramuntana mountains, surrounded by a lavish park and gardens in 326 acres of unspoilt nature, giving an unparalleled sense of freedom, access to pure mountain air and spectacular views.  The hotel is home to Zaranda restaurant, which is the only two Michelin starred restaurant in the Balearic Islands. The hotel's abundant gardens provide ingredients for home blended gins in the hotel's bar, as well as personalized spa treatments using almond blossom, lavender and rosemary.

An all-male cast is performing Shakespeare’s comedy The Merry Wives of Windsor when it stops of in Sandwell as part of a national tour.

The Festival Players Theatre Company is staging its open air performance of the classic at The Manor House, in Hall Green Road, West Bromwich on May 29.

Presented in full traditional costume the play brings the roguish but foolish knight Falstaff as he schemes to woo two married women to get his hands on their husbands’ money. But the merry wives are more than a match for him and a comic tale unfolds.

Audiences are encouraged to bring their own chairs, a blanket and enjoy a picnic in the grounds of the 13th century medieval manor house from 4pm and enjoy the performance which starts at 5pm.

Just weeks after announcing a 26-date summer tour of North America, Queen + Adam Lambert today revealed further live plans for 2017 which will now see the band return to Europe later this year for a series of 24 dates including 12 arena concerts in the UK and Ireland. The tour will showcase a spectacular new stage production and a set list, which the band hints will provide some surprises.

Queen + Adam Lambert’s 11-city UK and Ireland tour will see them perform at the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham on 30 November.  The tour is presented by Phil McIntyre Entertainments.

These shows will mark the band’s first full British tour in almost three years, having last performed across the UK in January 2015 when they played 10 sold out shows. Their only UK appearance in 2016 was a one-off headlining set at the closing night of the Isle of Wight Festival on Sunday June 12, part of a 15-date European summer festival tour. Isle of Wight festival organiser John Giddings credited the band with “the greatest show we have ever had”.

For their 2017 tour, the band will unveil a brand new show including a specially designed state-of-the-art production. The choice of performance material will no doubt acknowledge this year’s 40th anniversary of Queen’s biggest-selling studio album to date, News of the World from 1977, which yielded the immortal anthems “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions”.

Queen drummer and co-founder Roger Taylor insists the 2017 tour “will look entirely different to the show we took around before. Production has really changed a lot, the things you can do now, you have a much broader palette, the technology has really come along. But we don’t use it all. We don’t play to click track. It’s 100% live. We're planning on doing stuff we either haven't done before or haven't done for a long time. We started as an albums band, that's what we were. The fact that we had hits was just a by-product.”

Guitarist Brian May confirms Queen’s 2017 shows will have a more ambitious musical agenda. “The general public knows the hits, so you've got to cater for that,” he says, “but we can chuck in a few things that people really don't expect. We’ll do quite a bit more of that this time around. There are so many dimensions to Adam, which of course fits with our music. He can get down and do the rock stuff really dirty, and you have all those dimensions, and we can explore that even more.”

Adam Lambert welcomes the challenge of digging deeper into the band’s canon of classics. “What people should know if they came to the shows a couple of years back, is obviously we will still be playing the big hit songs you know and love from Queen, but we thought it would be good to challenge ourselves a bit,” he explains. “Change it up a little bit, change the visuals, change all the technology, change the set list to some degree. We will probably be pulling some other songs out of the Queen catalogue which we haven’t done before, which I am very excited about.”

Based on the hit animated TV series on Nickelodeon produced by Spin Master, PAW Patrol Live! brings everybody’s favourite pups to the stage for an action-packed, high-energy, musical adventure.

When Mayor Goodway is nowhere to be found during the day of the Great Adventure Bay Race, the pups come to the rescue. Join Ryder, Chase, Marshall, Rocky, Rubble, Zuma, Skye and the newest pup, Everest, when they take the stage at the Barclaycard Arena.

Featuring a cast of everybody’s favourite PAW Patrol characters and presented by Life Like Touring, VStar Entertainment Group and Nickelodeon, PAW Patrol Live! shows that ‘no job is too big, no pup is too small’ and shares lessons for all ages about citizenship, social skills and problem-solving as the characters each use their unique skills and teamwork.

The show includes two acts and an intermission, and incorporates an innovative costume approach that brings the pups to life on stage with their vehicles and packs during the all-important rescue mission.

The performance features up-tempo music and a cleverly written script, a good introduction to live theatre for young children. Classic theatrical scenery along with a high-tech video wall visually transports families to popular locations from the TV series, like Adventure Bay, The Lookout, Seal Island, Farmer Yumi’s Farm and Jake’s Mountain. During the show, the audience has the opportunity to participate in the adventure and become a part of the PAW Patrol Cheer Team.

Birmingham Bach Choir is one of the UK’s leading large chamber choirs and together with their orchestra and soloists, Paul Spicer will conduct a full Good Friday performance of Handel’s beautiful masterpiece MESSIAH at Wolverhampton Grand Theatre on Friday 14 April.

Birmingham Bach Choir is one of the City's oldest and most distinguished musical groups. It predates both the City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus and the City of Birmingham Choir. The exist to give inspiring live performances to a professional standard that engage with audiences, with a distinctive mix of new and established repertoire.

Messiah is an English-language oratorio composed in 1741 by George Frideric Handel, with a scriptural text compiled by Charles Jennens from the King James Bible, and from the version of the Psalms included with the Book of Common Prayer. It was first performed in Dublin on 13 April 1742 and received its London premiere nearly a year later. After an initially modest public reception, the oratorio gained in popularity, eventually becoming one of the best-known and most frequently performed choral works in Western music.

Paul Spicer began his musical training as a chorister at New College, Oxford. He studied with Herbert Howells and Richard Popplewell (organ) at the Royal College of Music in London, winning the top organ award (the Walford Davies Prize) in his final year. Paul is best known as a choral conductor, partly through the many CDs he made with the Finzi Singers for Chandos records. He conducted Bach Choirs in Chester and Leicester before moving to conduct the Bach Choir in Birmingham in 1992.

Spiagge Soul is a dynamic soul music festival that takes full advantage of Ravenna's sandy beaches, transforming the Adriatic into a mini New Orleans. Now in its 9th year, the Festival, which welcomes international artists from all over the world including the US, Algeria, Africa, Portugal and the UK, is proud to announce The Commitments as its headline act.

Headed up by former Coronation Street star Kevin “Curly Watts” Kennedy, the line up features many of the performers who were in the original West End cast.

2016's Festival saw Ravenna hosting 31 live concerts across 14 locations. Performers included Ruthie Foster and Brooklyn Funk Essentials from the US; Frankie Chavez from Portugal, Faris Amine from Algeria and Primo Nelson from the UK.

Spiagge Soul was launched in Ravenna in July 2009 with the aim of animating the city's Adriatic fronted sandy beaches with freely accessible live concerts. Joyfulness, hospitality and friendliness are the Festival's main characteristics wrapped around a love of soul, funk, jazz and blues music.

It has been an extraordinary six months for James Arthur. After returning with his single Say You Won’t Let Go, James has gone onto achieve multiple #1s, a Platinum selling album, sold out tours and two BRIT’s Nominations. Now he returns with the announcement of his first arena tour. The nine-date tour, with Ella Henderson in support, includes a show at Birmingham’s Genting Arena.

James wrapped up his last UK tour just last month and it sold out in minutes and earned him rave reviews from fans and critics alike. Excited to hit arenas, James commented: “It is unreal that I’ll be doing my first UK arena tour this November! The last tour was the best experience and now I cannot wait to take it to the next level in arenas. Thanks again for the continued support and can’t wait to see you there”.

Billed as The Comeback of the Year by many, James’s run of success shows no sign of slowing down through 2017. He launches his next single later this month and hits the USA again for performances on The Ellen DeGeneres show and The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon. This Summer, James supports One Republic on their US arena tour, is headlining shows in Europe and Japan and has been confirmed for a number of the UK’s biggest festivals.

James released Say You Won’t Let Go, his first single in over two years, in September and it shot straight to #1 on the Official Singles Chart where it stayed for three weeks and has gone onto sell over four million copies globally and been streamed over 450 million times. The single also topped the UK Airplay Chart and is currently in the Top 10 on the iTunes Chart in the USA. His second album Back From The Edge followed and saw him pick up his first #1 on the Official Albums Chart, going onto achieve Platinum status within just a few months.

Tickets go on sale this Friday at 9am from www.theticketfactory.com.

Tenerife hosted a record-breaking number of 116 national and international TV, film and photo shoots in 2016, 28 more than the previous year, according to the latest figures released by the Tenerife Film Commission. These productions, attracted by the island's tax incentives and stunning landscapes, generated total revenues of €6.5 million.

The Tenerife Film Commission, the brand of the Tenerife Tourism Corporation responsible for promoting the island as a filming location, also reveals that photoshoots were the most popular filming activity in 2016, with 58 in total. These were followed by advertising shoots (18), TV programmes (15) and films (6), amongst others.

Mr. Ricardo Martínez, Director of the Tenerife Film Commission, says: “We are extremely proud of reaching this record number of productions. Since the creation of the Tenerife Film Commission in 2000, we have welcomed over a thousand local and international production companies, which have collectively generated revenues of €80 million.”

Amongst the 17 UK productions filmed in Tenerife in 2016 were BBC series Silent Witness and Dr. Who (filming at the Teide National Park for the second time) and ITV programmes Take Me Out and The Holiday Show (pilot episode). Tenerife was also the backdrop for some UK advertising and photo shoots for brands including Jaguar Cars, John Lewis, Schuh and Asos.

Spanish productions dominated the shooting of films last year. Highlights include 1898. Our Last Men in the Philippines (directed by Salvador Calvo and starring Luis Tosar and Karra Elejalde) and Oro (directed by Agustín Díaz Yanes and starring Raúl Arévalo, Óscar Jaenada and José Coronado).

As well as its wide variety of striking landscapes and 3,000 hours of sunshine a year, international companies filming in Tenerife can benefit from a reduced rate of VAT (7%) together with a tax rebate of up to 35%. Further benefits are explained in the latest video from the Tenerife Film Commission.