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Festival has the X-Factor
Published 10/03/14

X-FACTOR star Rebecca Ferguson will headline on the final night of this year’s Henley Festival.

She will perform alongside five-piece harmony group the Overtones on Sunday, July 13.

Ferguson, 27, is the last name to be added to the five-night festival line-up and joins Brian Ferry, Burt Bacharach, Joss Stone and the Jacksons.

She was runner-up in the 2010 series of the ITV reality show, losing out to Matt Cardle. Her debut album, Heaven, was released in 2011 and reached number three in the charts while her latest release, Freedom, went on sale in December and charted at number six.

Other famous names to appear include comedian Jasper Carrott and impressionist Alistair McGowan, who will perform together, rock musician Rick Wakeman and award-winning comedian Milton Jones.

Carrott said: “It’s an exciting opportunity to work with an artist I’ve admired for many years — I just hope he’s not too funny!”

McGowan said: “Jasper was the first comic I ever saw performing ‘live’ when I was a teenager so it’s a real thrill to be working in tandem with him. I might even try to get him to sing Funky Moped — backstage, at least!”

Wakeman said: “I come to Henley at least half a dozen times a year and know it well, so I will certainly feel at home. It will be an honour to bring a touch of madness to the sanity of Henley!” Stewart Collins, creative director of the festival, said: “This truly is one incredible line-up, completed by a variety of magnificent acts. For the first time ever, we have major household names each evening, so it’s easy to feel extremely excited about the prospects for July.”

Michelin-starred chefs Albert Roux and Michel Roux Jr will be returning to the festival with their Roux at the Riverside restaurant.

Roux Jr said: “We have been a part of this event for around 15 years now and Henley is one of the highlights of our summer.

“It’s a beautiful location and a very special opportunity to meet everyone and share in their passion for great food, drink and music.” A total of 5,000 tickets are available for each night of the black-tie event, which also offers fine dining and a selection of comedy shows, art and sculpture exhibitions and quirky street theatre performers from around the world. Each night’s performance will be followed by the traditional fireworks.

This year’s festival, the 32nd, will run from Wednesday to Sunday, July 9 to 13. Tickets will go on public sale from March 24. All proceeds will go to the Prince’s Foundation for Children and the Arts. For more information, visit www.henley-festival.co.uk

*Ferguson collapsed during a performance of her new song on ITV’s Loose Women on Thursday last week but later made a full recovery.

Published 10/03/14

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