English Heritage Picnic Concerts announced

English Heritage is delighted to announce a spectacular, star-studded line-up for its 2011 Picnic Concert Series.

A host of world class international and British artists including global superstars Tom Jones, Jools Holland with Sandie Shaw, James Blunt, George Benson, Gipsy Kings and Katherine Jenkins will all perform at the incredible events. Scouting for Girls, Sophie Ellis Bextor, The Saturdays, Bjorn Again and Bootleg Beatles, are also set to perform, with more names to be announced in the coming weeks.

Held in the stunning, sumptuous surrounds of Kenwood House, Hampstead and Audley End, Saffron Walden from 24 June until 31 July, The English Heritage Picnic Concerts are arguably the most breath-taking musical experiences of the summer calendar.

With thousands of music lovers descending onto the expansive grounds with picnic blankets and hampers in hand, English Heritage Picnic Concerts supported by Monarch Airlines, are staged in the most beautiful and unique concert settings in the UK. This year will mark Kenwood House’s 60th anniversary of Picnic Concerts at the spectacular Hampstead Heath property. Since it was established in 1951, the annual event has delighted generations of audiences with a myriad of musical talent from world-class classical orchestras to respected contemporary acts including James Morrison, Simply Red and Blondie.
The impressive milestone will be celebrated with the Kenwood House Summer Prom, a delightful evening of stirring classical master-pieces performed by the celebrated Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra climaxing with a fireworks displays.

Iconic superstar Tom Jones will perform two incredible shows at this year’s English Heritage Picnic Concerts. Kicking off the Kenwood House season on Friday 24 June, this extraordinary voice will treat the audience to songs from his celebrated new album ‘Praise & Blame’ as well as his greatest hits, before hitting the stage at Audley End on Saturday 30 July.
Kenwood House will be rocking when the master of ivories Jools Holland dazzles the audience with the fun and fervour of his renowned sound on Saturday 25 June. He will be joined by special guest Sandie Shaw, one of Britain’s top female singers of the 1960s and true British pop icon. Jazz legend George Benson will bring the smooth, sultry sounds when he plays his ONLY UK show on Saturday 2 July while French ensemble Gipsy Kings will showcase their unique, pop-inflected take on native Spanish music on Friday 8 July. English singer-songwriter James Blunt will complete the Kenwood House Picnic Concert season, performing in the magical North London setting on Saturday 16 July.

Jools Holland said, “My Orchestra and I are delighted to return to the English Heritage Picnic Concerts in 2011. Having performed at Kenwood House in 2009, I know what an immense pleasure it is to be on stage at such a spectacular event with fantastic live music at one of the most magical settings in Britain and certainly in North London”.

Audley End will take a step back in time when two of the most celebrated tribute groups Bjorn Again and Bootleg Beatles hit the stage on Saturday 9 July. London trio Scouting for Girls will perform on Saturday 16 July, supported by gorgeous pop songstress Sophie Ellis Bextor, Girl group The Saturdays will bring their poptastic flair to the Saffron Walden property on Saturday 23 July while Welsh songbird Katherine Jenkins will take the 2011 Picnic Concert series to a magical crescendo when she performs at the Last Night of Audley End Proms on Sunday 31 July.

English Heritage Picnic Concerts are a true highlight of summer, uniting world-class music and breath-taking locations for a wonderful celebration of the British Picnic tradition. Whether guests choose to bring their own picnics or enjoy the delicious pre-prepared picnic hampers by Carluccio’s, the Picnic Concerts allow guests to feast on some of the finest food and music in the most enchanting settings in the UK. With both estates boasting rich musical histories – Kenwood House is home to Johannes Vermeer’s celebrated painting ‘The Guitar Player’ while Audley End was built for entertaining King James I, a strong campaigner for reforming and promoting the teaching of music – the sites are perfect locations for magical nights of incredible alfresco entertainment.

The concert dates for the 2011 English Heritage Picnic Concerts are as follows:

Kenwood House
Friday 24 June Tom Jones
Saturday 25 June Jools Holland with Sandie Shaw
Saturday 2 July George Benson
Friday 8 July Gipsy Kings
Saturday 9 July Kenwood House Summer Prom
Saturday 16 July James Blunt

Audley End
Saturday 9 July Bjorn Again/ Bootleg Beatles
Saturday 16 July Scouting for Girls with Sophie Ellis Bextor
Saturday 23 July The Saturdays
Saturday 30 July Tom Jones
Sunday 31 July Last Night of Audley End Proms – Katherine Jenkins

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