International festival is full flavoured

Red Priest'Mananan Festival 2012'Erin Arts Centre

Red Priest'Mananan Festival 2012'Erin Arts Centre

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ONE of the most highly regarded arts festivals in the British Isles will offer yet another impressive line-up of performers this month.

The international Mananan Festival hosted by Port Erin’s Erin Arts Centre returns on Tuesday, June 19, with performances from Jesus of Nazareth and Holby City actor Robert Powell, Pride and Prejudice actress Elizabeth Garvie, established singer Elaine Delmar, upcoming soprano Ruby Hughes and the flamboyant British Baroque instrumental group Red Priest.

This year marks the 38th festival – and it promises to be better than ever.

Festival patron Stephen Hough said: ‘There are well-established artists, some of whom are regular visitors to the island, and there are younger musicians at the start of important careers. It is truly a feast.’

The two-week arts festival kicks off at 8pm on Tuesday, June 19, with a floral demonstration by Tom Hodge - tickets £8. Then at 8pm on Wednesday, June 20, the Maggini String Quartet will take to the stage - tickets £20. On the Thursday, at 8pm, Martin Roscoe will play a piano recital - tickets £20. And on the Friday, at 8pm, French early music troupe L’yriade will perform – tickets £15. They come at the recommendation of the Lieutenant Governor Adam Wood who owns a home in their village in France. Mr Wood will again be attending some of the festival with his wife Katie Richardson.

The same weekend will see Worbey and Farrell return by popular demand on Saturday evening as Well Strung to perform an already sold out piano concert.

And on the Sunday there will be a Festival Matins Service at St Catherine’s Church in Port Erin at 11am followed by the Young Singer of Mann 2012 competition final at 2pm (tickets £5) and A Celebration of Dickens with actors Robert Powell and Elizabeth Garvie at 8pm. Music will be provided by Clive Conway and Christine Croshaw. Tickets are £25 but this event is nearly sold out so get in quick.

The second week will start with a guitar recital by Sean Shibe at 8pm on Monday (June 25) – tickets £15.

At 8pm on the Tuesday, early music group Red Priest will perform the masterworks of Bach using their legendary blend of creativity, wit and virtuosity – tickets £20.

The group’s recorder player Piers Adams was one of the judges on the recently broadcast BBC Young Singer of the Year competition.

Soprano Ruby Hughes and pianist Julius Drake will then perform at 8pm on the Wednesday – tickets £20.

Their performance will be recorded by the BBC Radio 3 team who return to the island yet again. The event will be broadcast at a later date. On Thursday, June 28, actor Will Murphy and pianist Una Hunt will perform Chopin in Paris. The event starts at 8pm – tickets £15. And at 8pm on the Friday, singer Elaine Delmar and Trio will take to the stage – tickets £20. Elaine has performed at the Erin Arts Centre on various occasions.

Then on the final day, Saturday, June 30, a free Festival Choral Evensong will be sung by Voces Insulae at St Catherine’s Church at 5pm followed by a concert at 8pm by the Ashley Wass Trio – tickets £20.

The festival is sponsored by the Isle of Man Arts Council, Tower Insurance, Appleby, Port Erin Commissioners and Isle of Man Bank.

Call 835858 or visit www.erinartscentre.com

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