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Mozart Orchestra, Indian dancers and MOBO award winners join Capstone's Spring Season

capstone spring 2016 Thursday 7 January 2016

Audiences have plenty to look forward to during the Capstone Spring Season 2016, including Liverpool International Jazz Festival, Milapfest, Liverpool Mozart Orchestra and a host of entertaining theatrical and dance pieces.

The contemporary and diverse programme at Liverpool Hope University's public arts venue is bursting with entertainment, and features live classical and jazz music, contemporary music, Indian music and dance performances and other exciting theatre and dance showcases.  The new season begins on Saturday 30th January with a free concert as part of Milapfest’s Music for the Mind and Soul, which this year focuses on Women in Indian music. A partner of Liverpool Hope University, Milapfest is Britain’s leading Indian Arts development trust, and produces world class performances, education and artist development opportunities across the UK.

The series of concerts begins with a concert by Jyotsna Srikanth. The southern Indian music is characterized by her lyrical and poetic compositions centralized around the violin.  The entertaining and cultural showcases continue on Saturday 19th March with Hindustani vocal music by Sawani Mudgal, a multi-talented singer with experience of music, dance and international cross-over projects. Accompanied by tabla maestro Kousic Sen, the music is a combination of deep, resonant improvised passages and beautiful poetry. 

On Saturday 9th April, two exceptional dance performances of Indian classical dance are presented, with dazzling footwork, complex rhythms and graceful movements. The dances include the premiere of Panchan by the Swati Dance Company which stars young dancers from the North West. As part of the new Capstone Classics Series of Showcase Arts Performances, star Indian dancer Rukmimi will keep the dance moves flowing as she showcases her innovative and unique approach to classical Indian dance on Saturday 23rd April. Rukmimi tells stories of mythological events, emotions and poetry. Following a performance on Saturday 30th April by bansuri maestro Stephanie Bosch, the penultimate showcase for Milapfest falls on Saturday 28th May and features sitarist Mita Nag, who carries on the legacy of her grandfather’s unique style of playing, known as vishnupur gharana, as she follows the contemplative, meditative style of Dhrupad, a style of vocal music.

Last but certainly not least for Milapfest, Shantala Subramanyam graces the stage on Friday 24th June to close the Capstone spring season with a flute and violin duet featuring beautiful compositions and improvisation from traditional and modern Southern India. Liverpool International Jazz Festival returns for its fourth year running from 25-28th February. The popular festival will host ticketed concerts from Luxembourg-born percussionist/composer Pascal Schumacher, Belgian guitarist Philip Catherine, and British saxophone legends Courtney Pine and Andy Sheppard,  who are set to make this year’s festival the biggest and best yet. Courtney Pine makes a welcome return to LIJF as the Saturday night headliner, with 2014 having seen him sell out venues and headline festivals across the UK. There are also a variety of free concerts from up and coming jazz artists. View the full festival programme

The Capstone will also host a variety of theatrical and dance performances. On Tuesday 23rd February Encompass Collective will debut Circumstances, their first UK tour which will see a triple bill of high energy contemporary dance theatre exploring how we interact with people, space and objects.  The People Show will perform Seagull Noir on Tuesday 8th March, with a special performance celebrating 50 years of theatre making in 2016 in which one can expect fast-paced action, conspiracy theories and a battle of good versus evil.

Joan Laage will showcase Earthtones on Wednesday 9th March, looking at how the body can be understood as an archiving device in relation to memory. The event is performed as part of the Department of Dance and Drama and Performance Studies Research Series. Classical music will also feature prominently in this Spring season, with the Liverpool Mozart Orchestra returning to the city for two evenings of classical musical delights on Saturday 12th March and Saturday 14th May, with programmes that include favourites by Mozart and Beethoven.

On Wednesday 15th March percussionist Joby Burgess provides a masterclass in contemporary percussion with his Pioneers of Percussion programme which features three world premieres and classic pieces by Feldman, Xenakis, Takemitsu and Pärt. 

German pianist Olivia Trummer’s C2J (Classical to Jazz) concert for piano and vibraphone on Friday 18th March fuses classical music and jazz styles.  Later in the season on Thursday 21st April, a concert of contemporary music for two pianos featuring pianists Richard Casey and Ian Buckle includes new pieces by Hope University composers Stephen Pratt and Ian Percy alongside music by Stravinsky and Debussy. A late series of Friday Jazz and World music concerts begins with a quartet performance by pianist/composer John Law’s New Congregation on Friday 8th April. The band is tipped to be one of the best musical discoveries of 2016. 

 Guitarist Ant Law performs for the first time in his stripped down trio format on Friday 15th April and Cinematic Orchestra alumni project The Breath will perform on Friday 22nd April with a World Music inspired set in support of their new album on Real World Records. 

On Friday 29th April two time MOBO award winners, Phronesis, a Scandinavian/British jazz trio who have been described by Jazzwise as “the most exciting and imaginative piano trio since EST”, return to the Capstone to conclude the series on an energetic note. Another full and varied programme in what promises to be the most ambitious, diverse and entertaining season to date for Liverpool's International Arts Venue.

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