THE full line-up for this year's Henley Festival is revealed today.
Shirley Bassey, Elvis Costello, Will Young and Bryn Terfel are to join Elton John as headline acts at the five-day music and arts extravaganza in July.
The line-up will also include a number of leading comedians, a new music stage, a mini version of Ronnie Scott’s famous jazz club and a new restaurant with Michelin-starred chef Daniel Clifford.
Sir Elton will open the festival when he performs on the “floating” stage on Wednesday, July 6, as previously announced. His show has already sold out. He will be followed on successive nights by award-winning singer-songwriter Elvis Costello and his band the Imposters, Welsh opera singer Bryn Terfel, who appeared at the festival in 2010, Dame Shirley, who will perform with vocal group Blake, and pop star Will Young.
Young, who also performed in 2010, said: “I am really excited to be closing the festival on the Sunday night. I had such fun playing there last time — it’s such a beautiful setting on the banks of the River Thames, not to mention headlining alongside one of my favourite people, Sir Elton John.”
The comedians who will be appearing include Al Murray, Reginald D Hunter, Nina Conti, Dillie Keane, Richard Herring, Hal Cruttenden, Simon Evans and The Boy with Tape on His Face.
The arrival of Ronnie Scott’s means visitors will be able to sit at cabaret-style tables and watch performances by Ronnie Scott’s Allstars while waiters serve cocktails and food.
The new music stage in a new big top on Lion Meadows will feature 10 up-and-coming acts.
The nightclub this year will be known as Pure Heaven as the famous Heaven venue brings its sister venue Pure..
Daniel Clifford, who holds two Michelin stars and runs Midsummer House in Cambridge, will be taking over the reins of the Riverside Restaurant from the Roux brothers, serving 950 covers a night.
He said: “I am incredibly excited to work at such an iconic event as Henley. The Riverside Restaurant will be the fine dining offering for guests.”
Chef and Henley Standard columnist Paul Clerehugh will be returning with a bespoke festival menu at his pop-up Crooked Billet restaurant, offering classic British food with locally sourced ingredients.
The roving eccentrica will return with street theatre entertainers, cabaret stars, buskers and entertainers from “deeply silly” giant kangaroos to a lifelike family of gorillas.
As in previous years, contemporary art installations and sculpture will be dotted around the festival site and there will be hanging works by leading photographers and painters in a series of pop-up galleries.
The Sunday family day returns where children can enjoy the festival site and interact with entertainers, musicians, comedians and street entertainers including Beatbox star Shlomo, comic Jay Foreman and circus company Upswing.
Performers will include the Henley Music School, the Henley Youth Choir and the Reading Big Band.
The 34th annual festival will run from Wednesday to Sunday, July 6 to 10.
A total of about 7,000 tickets will be available for each night and will go on sale to the general public on Thursday, February 25 at 10am.
For more information and to book tickets, visit www.henley-festival.co.uk