Colors: Red Color

Foo Fighters Bring A Gang Of The World’s Best Rock N Roll Bands Together For 12 Hours Of Non-Stop 100% Live Music at Cal Jam 17 - Oct 7th at Glen Helen Regional Park. Line up Includes Queens Of The Stone Age, Cage The Elephant, Liam Gallagher, The Kills, Royal Blood, Babes In Toyland, Japandroids, Bob Mould & Many More

“I wanted it to be the biggest sounding Foo Fighters record ever. To make a gigantic rock record but with Greg Kurstin’s sense of melody and arrangement… Motorhead’s version of Sgt. Pepper… or something like that.”

So speaks Dave Grohl of the mission statement made manifest in Foo Fighters’ ninth epic, the aptly-titled Concrete and Gold, due out September 15 worldwide on Columbia Records and available for pre-order now: http://smarturl.it/FFCG

Concrete and Gold marries some of the most insanely heavy Foo Fighters riffs ever with lush harmonic complexities courtesy of a first time team-up with producer Greg Kurstin (Adele, Sia, Pink). The first taste of which came in the form of anthem of the summer “Run” which was described by The Times as ‘epic’, Music Week as ‘classic’ and Shortlist as ‘the best thing they’ve done in years’.

The unlikely alliance with Greg came about through a bizarre sequence of surprise musical obsessions and chance encounters: Listening to the radio during a drive roughly four years ago, Grohl first heard “Again and Again” by Kurstin’s band The Bird & The Bee—“It blew my mind… it was so much more sophisticated than anything I’d ever heard and I became obsessed.”

Some months later, Grohl would randomly spot and fanboy out over “the guy from The Bird & The Bee!” a/k/a Greg Kurstin. The two became fast friends over common musical loves with Grohl learning that his new favourite band had been on hiatus due to Kurstin’s workload as a producer.

While Foo Fighters recorded and released Sonic Highways, broke some bones and packed stadiums and arenas on one of the top five grossing tours of 2015, and gifted fans with the St. Cecilia EP, "Greg was becoming one of the biggest producers in the world,” Grohl recalls.

With the writing and recording of the next Foo Fighters album on the horizon, Grohl was eager as always to find fresh challenges for the band: “So I think maybe Greg is the guy that we ask to be our producer because he’s never made a heavy rock record before and we’ve never worked with a pop producer.”

Darrel Thorp (Beck, Radiohead) was soon enlisted to mix and engineer. This collective conceived a blueprint of the new record as "Motorhead’s version of Sgt. Pepper... or something like that,” secretly booking into Hollywood’s esteemed EastWest studios to consummate this marriage of extremes... or as Grohl puts it: “Our noise and Greg’s big brain and all of his sophisticated arrangements and composition.”

Months, sounds and stories (more on those soon, promise) and so many guitars later, the 11-Grammy-winning, 25+ million-record-selling, last great American stadium rock band had completed its most ambitious album ever—which naturally begat another insane challenge: How to celebrate music & throw the ultimate "backyard party for 50,000 people”…

What came to Grohl in that vision will become reality October 7 when Foo Fighters’ CAL JAM 17 takes over Glen Helen Regional Park in San Bernardino, CA. In addition to being Foo Fighters’ biggest ever one-day U.S. headline, in the spirit of the original California Jam, this daylong marathon of eating, drinking and rocking features an absolutely unfuckwithable lineup: Queens of the Stone Age, Cage The Elephant, Liam Gallagher, The Kills, Royal Blood, Japandroids, Wolf Alice, Bob Mould, The Struts, Bully, Circa Waves, Babes in Toyland, Adia Victoria, Fireball Ministry, The Obsessed, Pinky Pinky, Starcrawler, White Reaper…

And in addition to 12 hours of rock and roll good times, Cal Jam 17 offers camping, carnival rides, a water park, attractions, a mobile recording studio & so much more. On Friday night, October 6, campers will also experience the world’s best Go-Go band Big Tony & Trouble Funk, an outdoor movie theatre and many other surprises. Camping space is limited, so act fast.

For the third year running members of the public are invited to enter the Inspiration Award, the only category open to the public, in this year’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Research in Film Awards.

The Research in Film Awards (RIFA) presents a fantastic opportunity for budding filmmakers to showcase their work to a wider audience, including those in the film industry.

The awards are designed to recognise the best short films (defined as no longer than 30 minutes) which have been inspired by arts and humanities research and are judged by a panel of academic and film industry experts, with names including Professor Andrew Chitty, AHRC Creative Economy Champion, British film critic Antonia Quirke, and Matthew Reisz from Times Higher Education.

Financial Times Arts Editor and Chair of the judging panel, Jan Dalley said:

“I am delighted to be the chair of the judges for the third AHRC Research in Film Awards. The project has grown in size, reach and quality in a remarkable way in such a short time, and is becoming an important voice in imaginative research initiatives, and in short documentary filmmaking generally. Last year the judges were delighted with the excellent and highly varied entries, and look forward to even more this time around. “

With a trophy up for grabs as well as £2,000 in prize money to put towards their future filmmaking activities, the awards present a unique platform for emerging filmmakers to get themselves and their work noticed. All shortlisted entrants will be invited to an awards ceremony on 9 November 2017 at the prestigious 195 Piccadilly in London, home of BAFTA, where writer and broadcaster Danny Leigh, will be hosting the event.

RIFA is the only film awards dedicated entirely to arts and humanities research, designed to bring research to life using creative and visual storytelling. Last year the awards received over 200 entries across five categories2 and are fast becoming recognised as an important accolade in their own right.

The Inspiration Award recognises films produced in the UK which have been inspired by arts and humanities research in some way. The film could stem from a museum exhibition, book, performance or an archaeological dig for example and it may be produced collaboratively or individually.

 

This summer you are in for a treat as Illyria touring theatre return to the Lake District with a performance of William Shakespeare's 'A Comedy of Errors' & Hans Christian Andersen's 'The Emperor's New Clothes'.

The audience will be captivated by these stories and bowled over by the stunning location, as the performances take at Brantwood's idyllic lakeside meadow on the shores of Coniston Water. These one night performances will take place on Tuesday 25th July & Tuesday 22nd August. So if you are looking for a rip-roaring performance to tickle you on a summers evening look no further!

The sounds of Biffy Clyro, Maroon 5 and Scissor Sisters, AC DC and Thin Lizzy will fill the air at Walsall Arboretum on Wednesday 21st June (International Music Day) as Walsall College Music students host their second live music festival.

The FREE event kicks off at 12noon until 4.30pm at the park’s bandstand and will see a range of college bands perform a mix of original tracks and cover songs to entertain the crowds. There will be music styles to suit different tastes from pop to RnB and rock to ska.

International Music Day takes place every year on the 21st June, mid-summer solstice, with free events to celebrate the universal language of music in over 120 countries and 700 cities around the world.

Head of Curriculum for Music at Walsall College, Alan Tyler, said: “After the success of last year’s event students are very passionate about marking International Music Day again this year and are putting in extra rehearsals before this event to make it even bigger and better.

“The talents of our students is again very impressive this year and we are delighted they have been given this opportunity, with support from the council, to showcase their performance abilities to the public.

“The festival coincides with the end of GCSE and A-level exams, so it will be a great way for students across the borough to celebrate and enjoy some fantastic music from local up and coming artists.”

A film made by University of Wolverhampton Video and Film Production graduates has been shortlisted at this year’s national Royal Television Society (RTS) Student Television Awards.

Chaired by Philip Edgar-Jones, Director of Sky Arts, the awards recognise the best audiovisual work created by students across the UK and Republic of Ireland at undergraduate and postgraduate level. Awards are judged in six categories – Animation, Comedy & Entertainment, Drama, Factual, News and Short Feature.

Steve George and Ryan Sibanda directed and produced “Si” which won Best Short Feature in last year’s RTS Midlands Centre Awards.  The film has been nominated in the Undergraduate Short Feature Category and has also been nominated in the Craft Skills Editing (Steve George) and Camerawork (Joshua Baggott) categories.

Steve George, 40 from Sutton Coldfield, said: “Si is a comedy about a lonely wet floor sign in a busy office building who narrates his everyday routine. When Mary, a worker who Si adores, is attacked by a colleague, Si has to save the day. Not easy when you're a free standing sign and made of plastic.

“We are honoured, and humbled, to be nominated for the national awards after our success in the regionals last year. We continue to be pleasantly surprised at how our film, loosely based on Maslow's hierarchy of needs and partly set in a gents’ toilet, is being so well received. We would also like to once again thank staff at the University of Wolverhampton for their support."

Phil Nichols, Course Leader in Video and Film Production at the University, said: “I'm really delighted that Steve and Ryan have progressed to the national RTS Awards - and for such a deceptively simple film as "Si". Every year we like to put the best student films forward for the Royal Television Society Awards, and it's great that "Si" has now gone national. What makes "Si" work is the clever voice-over. Steve George is a good writer of comedy, and this short film shows him at his best.”

Dr John Pymm, Dean of Faculty of Arts at the University of Wolverhampton, said: “We have built good links with broadcast partners and businesses to shape our curriculum so that students benefit from real life projects and work placements.  Being involved in such a high profile awards event is an amazing experience for our students and we’re delighted to be nurturing future broadcasting talent at the University.”

The Royal Television Society is an educational charity which promotes the art and science of television, encouraging and celebrating work and achievements in television production, digital and broadcast production in the Midlands region.

The winners will be announced at a ceremony on Friday 16 June at the BFI Southbank in London.

As 'festival season' dawns, Ecoffee Cup urges revellers to ditch single-use cups to lessen their plastic footprint

Ecoffee Cup, a new generation of reusable cup, launched to help tackle the ever-growing problem of single-use packaging waste, is calling on festival goers to trade countless single-use plastic or plastic lined paper cups for reusable ones this summer.

Choosing reusables will help lessen the environmental impact of single-use products going to landfill, while also working to encourage further awareness of the waste issue among the all-important millennial and family festival-going communities.

Glastonbury will spend £780,000 to dispose of an estimated 1650 tonnes of waste generated by 177,550 attendees this year, even despite its green policies, which attempt to deter high volumes of waste.

This year, Glastonbury is aiming for 60% of waste to be recycled (in 2014, half of all waste was recycled). The only way to guarantee that waste doesn't end up in landfill however, is to choose reuse over recycle.

While the vast majority of Brits still believe that takeaway paper cups are recyclable, the reality is quite different; the plastic lining of disposable cups makes the separation and recycling process very difficult. Over 100 billion single-use cups end up in landfill globally each year - that's 273,972,603 coffee cups every single day.

By reusing an Ecoffee Cup multiple times, attendees can support Glastonbury's commitment to 'reduce, reuse and recycle', as the organisers call on festival goers to take everything that is brought onto the festival site home.

“So much more work is needed on behalf of coffee chains, supermarkets and consumer groups in order to raise awareness and change attitudes and behaviours surrounding waste,” says Ecoffee Cup founder, David McLagan. “Coffee-drinking Brits need to be aware of their direct role and responsibility in helping to reduce waste. Everyone can contribute by taking simple steps towards using reusable and sustainable products.”

Throughout the month of June and conveniently ahead of peak festival season, Ecoffee Cup will be supporting the Marine Conservation Society's 'Plastic Challenge' by donating £1 of the sale price of every cup purchased via the Ecoffee Cup website to the MCS.

Palm Springs, California's famous desert playground, is gearing up for a summertime full of fun with a calendar jam-packed with exciting activities and events to suit all visitors. With 350 days of sunshine per year and a climate envied by us weather-beaten Brits, a visit to Palm Springs will guarantee an injection of colour and entertainment over the summer months, whether travelling as a family, a single travelling, as a couple or in a group of friends.

There is a spectrum of events to choose, from the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival to the poolside parties of the Palm Springs' Splash House music festival.  Whatever the holiday preference, summertime fun in Palm Springs is like no place else.

Among the many events and activities to choose from this summer are:

Palm Springs International Short Film Festival

One of the most acclaimed short film showcases in the world will take place at Palm Springs Camelot Theatre. Now in its 22nd year, the Palm Springs International ShortFest will showcase over 325 short films from more than 50 countries. The week-long festival begins Tuesday June 20 to June 27, 2017.

Wet 'N Wild Dive-in Movies

The 1950's themed water park, Wet 'n Wild will host a series of dive-in movies throughout the summer. Every Friday night from now until August 4th, the price of daily park admission gets you a front row pool floatie for some family-friendly entertainment. The line-up includes Secret Life of Pets, ZooTopia, Sing, Moana and Finding Dory.

Splash House Weekend 1 (August 11-13, 2017)

Splash House announces its return to the desert for another outrageous summer of poolside vibes and world-class music. Splash House will return to The Renaissance, Riviera, Saguaro Hotel and Palm Springs Air Museum. Over the past three years, those in the know have flocked to this SoCal destination festival that has managed to retain its sense of community and summer-camp vibe, even as it adds to its ever-growing crew of discerning pool party devotees.

Comic Con Palm Springs

For the 2nd year Comic Con Palm Springs will bring together some of the most passionate and talented people from the world of comic books and entertainment. Happening at the Renaissance Palm Springs and the Palm Springs Convention Center August 25-27th 2017, confirmed appearances include Stan Lee and Lynda Carter.

Britain’s Got Talent finalists The Missing People Choir are to join Bryan Adams, Kaiser Chiefs, Jools Holland and The Pretenders in a stellar line-up for this year’s Cornbury Music Festival. Having seen the Choir perform on the popular TV talent show, Festival Director Hugh Phillimore wanted to help the Choir raise further funds for UK charity Missing People and knew they would be the perfect addition to The Fabulous Finale.

Always ready with some surprise guests over the weekend, The Caffè Nero stage will host Leddra Chapman, Belle Roscoe, Gracie Falls and country singer Twinnie Lee Moore amongst others. Whilst The Berk’s Nest Comedy Emporium will be filled with the best of British; the brilliant Nish Kumar, superstar stand-up poet and former Fosters award winner Tim Key, who recently starred in the E4 comedy sitcom Gap Year, and Edinburgh fringe-favourites Austentatious – a full-length improvised Jane Austen comedy play, spun entirely from the audience’s suggestions! Expect bonnets, chivalry and musical accompaniment.

Revellers can reboot in style at MasterChef finalist Matt Edwards’ unique pop-up restaurant Salt & Dry, where diners can enjoy the delights of Sophie Ellis Bextor, Scouting for Girls, Right Said Fred and many more, from the comfort of their own table. Meanwhile, long-term Cornbury partners Waitrose are opening their restaurant doors for big breakfasts, lavish lunches and delicious dinners, along with a rooftop lounge where myWaitrose card holders can relax and soak up the summer sun. All on top of the usual Cornbury favourites; Paellaria, Wok's Happening, Goan Seafood and the all-new South Indian-inspired Dosa Deli.

In between the great acts, don’t miss the chance to experience the last remaining Mobile Cinema of just seven made in the 1960s. Climb aboard the charming ‘Audrey’ and you’ll be able to enjoy Cornbury’s own highlights film ‘A Brief History of Cornbury’, as well as a selection of classic vintage short films. Cornbury’s therapy tent is always a popular choice for anyone looking for a little bubble of bliss amongst the festival hubbub. This year, they’re offering more than ever — massage, reiki, reflexology, facials, and aromatherapy. Free yoga classes will also be on offer throughout the weekend.

And finally the all-important Kids Zone – a mainstay of the festival. Offering a host of delights for young Cornburygoers including Bollywood dancing, ukulele playing and circus skills, along with the usual enticing arts and crafts, joyful dressing up and fun. Meanwhile, nearly adults and still-got-it parents can learn to play guitar, rig a whole band, or just enjoy the bohemian vibes in The Mayflower Tent.

 

The Bagri Foundation Birmingham Indian Film Festival (BIFF) returns to the city this summer in partnership with the citywide USTAV celebration of South Asian culture.

Sister to the Bagri Foundation London Indian Film Festival, (LIFF) it is regarded as Europe’s largest Indian film festival and will run from Friday 23 June until Sunday 2 July 2017.

The festival opens at Cineworld Birmingham, with a glittering red-carpet Birmingham premiere of the historical epic, ‘The Black Prince’ by Kavi Raz, a powerful UK-produced film launched at Cannes.  It stars Punjabi singer Satinder Sartaaj, who will be guest of honour on the opening night, iconic actress Shabana Azmi (The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Fire), Jason Flemyng (Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, X-Men:First Class) and Amanda Root (Jane Eyre). The film dramatises the true but little-known story of the last King of Punjab who was abducted by the British Raj to be mentored by Queen Victoria.

Back into the 21st Century for the closing night mac Birmingham will screen the surreal Malayalam road-movie thriller ‘Sexy Durga’ directed by Sanal Kumar Sasidharan. Winner of the prestigious Tiger Award for best film at Rotterdam International Film Festival ‘Sexy Durga’ set in Kerala tells the tale of a hitch-hiking couple who try to escape a road to hell after accidentally getting into a car of deranged gangsters.

The acclaimed festival features new and exciting cinema featuring cutting edge films that reaffirm the festival’s position as the ‘punk-rock of Indian cinema’ and is an edgy tie-in, to UK-India Year of Culture and complementing the BFI’s India on Film programme,

Further screenings include the regional premieres of Tamil comedy, ‘Ticket - The Movie’ (Raaghav Ranganthan, 2017), anarchic Bollywood comedy Badman (Soumik Sen, 2017) and N Padmakumar's inspirational Mumbai drama ‘A Billion Colour Story’ (2016). The festival experiments, for the first time, with horror with the disturbing ‘Hide and Seek’ (Vishal Furia, 2016), plus the regional premiere of Pakistani gangster thriller, ‘Whirlpool’ (Harune Massey 2017).

The Bagri Foundation Birmingham Indian Film Festival will also host an exclusive ‘In Conversation With’ including Bollywood Director, Ashutosh Gowariker who directed Bollywood superstar, Aamir Khan in the Oscar nominated ‘Lagaan: Once Upon A Time in India’ (2001) and the epic historical romance ‘Jodhaa Akbar’ (2008) starring former Miss World, Aishwarya Rai.

Cary Rajinder Sawhney, LIFF & BIFF Director, says: “We are delighted to bring Birmingham audiences a carefully curated selection of the very best new Indian and South Asian independent cinema; all films are English subtitled, offering a rare window into over a billion South Asian lives. This year's selection includes premieres of new comedies, gripping thrillers, shocking horror and insightful true-life documentaries as well as bringing together UK previews of major award-winning films from the world's greatest film festivals."

New venue partners for this evolving festival continue to help it serve a broader diverse audience and this year the festival is delighted to welcome The Mockingbird Cinema and Kitchen, based at the Custard Factory in Digbeth. The festival’s long-term venues include Cineworld Birmingham Broad Street and mac Birmingham.

The festival is title sponsored by the Bagri Foundation with major support from Grange Hotels, Sun Mark Ltd, and is funded by the BFI's National Lottery Film Festivals Fund. This year the festival is proud to be working with new partners; Asian Business Chamber of Commerce and Birmingham City University as well as new Media Partner BBC Radio WM alongside the continued support of Sampad South Arts and Film Birmingham.

Title Sponsor Dr Alka Bagri of the Bagri Foundation adds: "We are excited to celebrate with LIFF and BIFF the art of Indian independent cinema in this UK India Year of Culture. This year’s programme is a vibrant and diverse mixture of films which explore all aspects of human experience, tackling hard-hitting issues through fiction and documentary.

The films screened are in a wide range of South Asian languages to reflect the linguistic diversity of Birmingham’s Indian and South Asian communities and all films are subtitled in English.

 

Leading UK comedy club The Glee is ensuring a summer of fun by handing out 1,000 tickets - absolutely free!

Under the banner of The #BigGleeGiveaway, the event kicks off on Monday 5 June, and continues until Monday 10 July 2017.

For six sunny weeks, the club will slowly reveal a series of presently secret locations around the Birmingham where eager comedy fans can grab their freebies - these could be anywhere from local cafes and supermarkets, to major High Street stores.

The locations of the free tickets will be announced on the venue’s website every Monday morning at 10am, and via social media using the hashtag #BigGleeGiveaway.

Eager-eyed punters can then dash to the named locations for a chance to pick up their prize.

Tom Hunt, The Glee’s Marketing Director said: “Building on the success of last year’s give-away, we’re teaming up with leading local businesses in the four major cities where we have clubs.

“We believe strongly in working closely with local businesses to encourage people to get out and enjoy their city, so we hope this campaign will remind people of all the great places on their doorstep.”

The coming months see a host of great acts appearing at the multi-award-winning comedy venues, including Dane Baptiste, who helmed Sunny D, his own sitcom for BBC Three, and Rob Rouse, who starred as Bottom on Ben Elton's Shakespearian comedy series Upstart Crow.

In addition to grabbing free tickets to see some of the best comedians performing in the UK today, lucky ticket-holders will also stand a chance of winning other freebies when they attend the show.

Mr Hunt said: “We want people to have fun this summer and join us to see some comedy’s biggest names ahead of the iconic Edinburgh Festival. The #BigGleeGiveaway is our way of introducing people who perhaps have never seen a comedian to a spectacular live entertainment show.

“We also hope that those who’ve experienced The Glee before will go out and grab their chance to do so again, and enjoy a show on us this summer, free of charge.”

Since its 1994 arrival in Birmingham, the Arcadian-based venue has hosted performances by such acts as Dara O'Briain, Jack Whitehall, Sarah Millican, Shappi Khorsandi, Jack Dee, Lee Evans and Russell Howard. The venue recently won Chortle Awards’ Best Comedy Venue 2017 (Midlands and The East), and What’s On Readers’ Awards Best Midlands Comedy Night 2017.

Storywalks in the woods, campfire tales and family storytelling all day  are all on the programme for the sixth Martineau Gardens Storytelling Festival.  Community Garden Martineau Gardens and the Traditional Arts Team have joined forces to create the Martineau Gardens Storytelling Festival, a family friendly day of storytelling plus arts, music and crafts taking place on Saturday 17 June, 11am – 7pm.

There will be a full programme of storytelling taking place under cover, in hidden corners of the two and half acre leafy community garden, not far from Birmingham city centre. From woodland glades to the sundial lawn, there will be a continuous stream of storytelling performances during the day aimed at everyone from little children right up to adults. There will be stories with food, stories with walks, stories with masks and more. Hear rousing yarns around the pirate ship, and as the festival draws to an end, campfire tales will bring all around the campfire for the finale.

There are a host of storytellers from across the Midlands including leading storytellers, Graham Langley, Catriona Heatherington and Cath Edwards. Storytellers Studio will be there in full force with their high-energy and the continuous Pop-Up storytelling canopy will see the audience listening to one story or staying all day. Tellers from around the region and beyond include Sheffield’s Beth Guiver, Wales’ Bethan Mascarenhas and Nottingham’s Monika Johnson will be mask making as she tells her stories.

Live music will be provided by Moseley Village Band and troubadour Rich Stokes will be singing and telling stories. Festival goers can enjoy an entertaining musical version of ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’ and listen to stories whilst cooking around the Earth Oven. Juliette Green, the Gardens’ Education Officer, will be running minibeast hunting and wildlife craft  activities.  There will be storywalks, token gathering, stories and pictures in the Glasshouse gallery and a sparkling light show in the woods.

A festival wouldn’t be a festival without the food - delicious tapas, cakes and salads will be available all day from ChangeKitchen CIC.

Graham Langley, of the Traditional Arts Team said: “Martineau Gardens is the  perfect place to experience the magic of storytelling.”  Caroline Hutton, Director of Martineau Gardens said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming new faces to Martineau Gardens through this Storytelling Festival.”

Award-winning art featuring ceramic flowers and woolly creations goes on show at an Oldbury studio’s open day.

Creative Arts, in Cyprus Street, is encouraging people along to find out more about what it does when it throws its doors open on Friday June 23, from 11-3pm.

The community arts team was behind the recent ceramic flower exhibition which won a top award from the Royal Horticultural Society’s Britain in Bloom Award in the It’s Your Neighbourhood category.

Also on show is an exhibition called The Pull of Wool which features interesting photos of people knitting in unusual locations as well as photos of people who don't normally knit and some quirky knitted items.

Sandwell Council-run Creative Arts, which provides day opportunities for people with disabilities, set up the project last year with arts organisation Creative Black Country.

More than 500 people from a range of community and education groups across the Black Country helped make the magical ceramic garden featuring 1,200 beautiful hand-made ceramic flowers and 500 mini beasts.

Some of the flowers will be on sale during the open day when there will also be crafts stalls, music from the George Formby tribute act, refreshments and a raffle.

The Isle of Wight's annual Festival of the Sea this year sets sail on June 23, for a voyage that will last until July 9, and with the range of nautical festivities - including a pirate festival on golden sands, delicious seafood fresh off the boat, and spectacular yachting extravaganzas featuring thousands of boats.

Highlights for 2017 include:

Pirate Plunder at Blackgang Chine

24th and 25th June & 1st & 2nd July

They will be hoisting the Jolly Roger to give young scallywags the chance to join a Scurvy Crew at Blackgang Chine, where there will be opportunities to learn how to sword fight like a true Blackgang Buccaneer and take part in the smugglers' next treasure hunt.

Challenge the Wight

24th June

A strenuous 26.5-mile hike/run across the Isle of Wight at night.  It's a chance to walk from the Needles Landmark Attraction to Yaverland to raise money for Challenge & Adventure a local charity that helps disadvantaged and challenging young people on the Isle of Wight.  A 'lite' route (12 miles) or kids route (4 miles) is also available.

Round the Island Race in association with Cloudy Bay 2017

1st July

This most famous of annual yacht races, and the largest of its kind in the world, regularly attracts entries exceeding 1,500 yachts and upwards of 12,000 sailors racing the 50 nautical miles westabout course around the Isle of Wight, starting and finishing in Cowes.

Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra present "Carnival at Sea"

1st July

A 'Carnival at Sea' by the Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra at Medina Theatre, from 7:15pm.  This family friendly concert will celebrate the Islands strong links with the sea - with a programme that includes Rule Britannia and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Mardi Gras Parade in Ryde

1st July

A day-long carnival event by the sea.  Take advantage of a free day of fun and celebration with a parade and festival at the beach.

Shipwreck Isle 2017, Appley Beach, Ryde

2nd July

Ahoy there!  Join in a thrilling pirate festival set on a spectacular beach, on an enchanted isle.  Expect live pirate music, cannon and firearms demonstrations, stunt action sword fights, young pirates entertainment and much, much more skullduggery.

Panerai British Classic Week 2017

6th - 13th July

The Classic Week, now in its 11th year takes place in Cowes, on the Isle of Wight.  Since 2010, it is the only UK regatta forming part of the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge series, the leading international circuit for classic and vintage yachts.  Social events included as part of the week include an Open Yachts Pontoon Party on the July 9; a Themed Crew Party – “Pirates of Penzance”- on July 10; a prize giving Gala Dinner on the July 12 and the famous Parade of Sail past the Royal Yacht Squadron on the final day, July 13.

The Edinburgh Cup and South Coast Championship, Cowes

9th – 15th July

A Regatta for the International Dragon fleet.  Designed in 1929, the International Dragon combines classic elegance with grand prix performance, the world's greatest sailing venues and some of the best sailors from around the globe.  One of the Dragon fleet's most prestigious trophies is the Edinburgh Cup which was presented to the class in 1949 by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh and is awarded annually to the winner of the International Dragon British Open Championship.

A University of Wolverhampton Music graduate from Kingswinford was in tune with one of the world’s greatest classical singers when she supported Russell Watson on his UK tour.

Laura Wright, 23 from Kingswinford, was performing as part of professional choir, Birmingham Voices.  They supported Russell Watson on his latest UK Orchestra Tour which covered Birmingham, Blackpool, Glasgow, Bournemouth and the London Palladium.

Russell Watson’s debut album, The Voice, held the number one spot in the UK charts for a record 52 weeks and his second album, Encore, sold two million copies worldwide.  He has won four Classical Brit Awards during his fifteen year career and has performed for some of the world’s greatest figures including The Queen.

Now a Recruitment Administrator at the University of Wolverhampton, Laura studied for a degree in Music at the Walsall Campus School of Performing Arts and is now studying for a Master’s degree in Event and Venue Management at the Wolverhampton Business School.

She said:  “It was an absolute privilege to be part of the choir that supported Russell on his tour. We got the opportunity to sing at some truly iconic venues in front of amazing crowds and I’m really pleased to be continuing my love for music after finishing my degree.

“Without a doubt, my studies have opened doors for me and I’ve been involved with Birmingham Voices since March 2017.  This was an opportunity that everyone on the choir embraced to the full – even being on the road, all the rehearsals – it was all worthwhile to be on the stage with such a renowned, international singing success.”

A Poster Competition and Painting Exhibition was organized by Sadequain Art Spectrum in collaboration with Rawalpindi Arts Council to provide platform to young talent of the region. Member Punjab Assembly Lubna Rehan Pirzada inaugurated the exhibition accompanied by Naheed Manzoor, Resident Director RAC Waqar Ahmed, Ch. Waseem Sajjad, Gulzar Ali, and Sundas Qayyum.

Senior artist Ayub Wali adjudged the competition. The students from APS Fort Road, APS Westridge, Rawalpindi Institute of Art and Design, Government Post Graduate College for Women, Sattelite Town, Rawalpindi, International Islamic University, Islamabad, Fatima Jinnah Women University, Rawalpindi participated in the exhibition.

Impersonator, singer, actress and TV host Véronic DiCaire will join Céline Dion as her opening act on her LIVE 2017 European Tour this summer. Véronic has been a very popular complement to Céline's tours in previous years... starting with the Taking Chances tour in 2008, and most recently opening up for her in Belgium in 2016.

Véronic is able to recreate many of the greatest voices in the world with uncanny accuracy, impressing audiences everywhere she goes. She’s an incredible talent and truly one-of-a-kind!

In 2008, Céline Dion and René Angélil personally requested Véronic to open for the Taking Chances show at the Montréal Bell Centre. In one night, her life had changed!  With this huge success, she performed to sold-out shows everywhere in Québec and travelled with her multiple voices on a European tour.

Véronic began a residency in Vegas in 2013– Voices – at Bally’s Hotel & Casino’s Jubilee Theatre. The show was co-produced by Céline Dion and ran until the end of 2015.  It garnered much critical acclaim and she was chosen as Best Singer for the 2014 Best of Las Vegas Awards, and voted winner in the category of “best impressionist successor to Danny Gans” in Vegas SEVEN’s Best of the City 2014.

Véronic will open for Céline’s shows across Europe and the UK, which heads to the Barclaycard Arena in July and August.