July 19, 2008

Culture: Unforgettable Times in Prospect at Fest

SUMMER finally arrives this weekend and, for the next 10 days at least, it'll be a scorcher.

Last night's lighting up of Bambuco - the temporary bamboo bridge across the Tyne - marked the launch of the SummerTyne festival, which lines up sizzling music and family events at The Sage Gateshead until July 27.

From noon today until 4pm, the outdoor Performance Stage hosts the Steel Pandango, a slice of the Caribbean on Tyneside and a chance to show off local steel pan talent.

It's followed by a solo competition, then a concert indoors.

On the outdoor stage tomorrow, Caribbean-on-Tyne continues with the addition of a touch of Latin spice. The newly formed Baghdaddies Big Band set the tone, followed by Brazilian singer Monica Vasconcelos, then up-tempo salsa and reggae.

At 7.30pm in Hall One of The Sage, singer Mayra Andrade, the new Cape Verdean diva who won this year's BBC World Music Award, performs a Latin double bill with Antonio Forcione, the "Jimi Hendrix of the acoustic guitar". Cuban-born Mayra's songs of island life are complemented by her Brazilian band.

Also tomorrow, in Hall Two at 8pm, a Tribute to Bob Marley and the Legends of Reggae Music will see Jamaican and UK reggae greats recreate songs of the late legend with a few of their own. Janet Kay, Michael Prophet, Earl 16, Prince Malachi and Winston Reedy promise a night to remember.

SummerTyne continues next week.

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