The Apex welcomes the return of live music...
Although the Box office, Tourist Information Centre and Cafe are currently open for business, it’s hoped that The Apex auditorium will soon be buzzing with audiences ready to celebrate the joys of live music!
Following the government’s COVID-19 recovery road map, Step 3 sees indoor venues being able to open at a restricted capacity – which will hopefully be from Monday 17 May.
With live performance being among the top things that people have missed most in lockdown, The Apex has programmed a ‘Socially Distanced Season’ to welcome music lovers back into the venue with a series of reduced capacity events.
Venue manager, Nick Wells told us “We’re really looking forward to being able to open our doors again to audiences and performers for this run of socially distanced shows.” He added, “The joyful response to the handful of shows we did in the Autumn showed us how much people are looking forward to doing all of those things again that bring pleasure to our lives.” With its flexible facilities, including a unique moveable floor, The Apex auditorium can easily be configured to enable people to enjoy live music again, while still remaining safe. Carefully spaced tables with one, two, three or four chairs can be booked by household groups and ‘bubbles’ of seats are available on the balconies. Ticket prices will be refunded if the event is cancelled (or postponed and you can’t make the new date). Additional steps taken to maintain a COVID-secure venue can be seen on the website.
Last autumn’s few socially distanced events went well, with audience responses such as “It was a wonderful and very moving concert. Covid arrangements were well thought-out and efficient. Altogether a delightful Christmas treat. Thank you!” and “It felt a safe and controlled environment, well done to all concerned.”
The season opens with a bang on Wednesday 26 May, with the exuberant Yiddish Twist Orchestra. This highly acclaimed band play a deliriously danceable mix of Klezmer, West Indian Calypso, mambo, surf guitar, classic Yiddish songs and English beat rhythms. Roots Of The World described them as "A blazing brass section, two nifty connoisseurs of the electric guitar, and a drummer with rhythm deep in his bones... Yiddish Twist are one band not to miss."
The following day (27 May), Mick Doran, Principal Percussion of English National Opera, brings An A to Z of Orchestral Triangle Playing. This entertaining talk is full of humorous stories and poignant moments drawn from 30+ years’ experience working with the world’s greatest orchestras, conductors and soloists. Classic FM’s John Suchet pronounced it as ‘A brilliant one-man show. You will laugh!’ and Katherine Bott agreed - ‘This show is a joy; you’ll never hear a triangle in the same way again.’
Singer/songwriter Bessie Turner will play on Friday 28 May. Suffolk-born Bessie released her debut single in 2017 to unexpected acclaim. After performing a live session for BBC Introducing in Suffolk, the single enjoyed plays on BBC Radio 1 and 6 Music. Bessie has headlined the BBC Introducing Stages at Latitude, Reading and Leeds and in 2019 was picked by Ed Sheeran as his support act. “Simply stunning, Bessie is a rare talent...she has an edge and charisma that make her an engaging and captivating performer. A superstar in the making.” - BBC Introducing.
“The UK’s answer to Diana Krall and Norah Jones” (Time Out), Joanna Eden brings her band on Thursday 3 June. Joanna’s band features leading musicians from the Latin jazz scene and combines the energy and rhythmic virtuosity of Latin music with the intimacy of her acclaimed originals and her own take on classic songs by the likes of Joni Mitchell, Bonnie Raitt and Carole King.
Omar Puente Quintet take to the stage on Thursday 10 June. This internationally renowned violinist brings a virtuoso performance to a variety of musical styles, including traditional Cuban music, classical genres and jazz. Rich with energy, creative arrangements and originality, ‘It's a fiery and exuberant set, touching on Africa, Cuba and England as it progresses.’ – Songlines Magazine ‘Omar Puente’s contribution to 20th and 21st century violin playing has now become legendary… a true violin great’ – Nigel Kennedy.
On Wednesday 16 June, you can see pioneering vocalist Najma Akhtar. Najma explores her Indian-British roots by encompassing a plethora of genres from World Jazz, Rajasthani, Delta Blues, Psychedelic, Rock and Folk, to Sufi, African Blues and Irish Celtic. Her diverse body of work includes artistic collaborations with some of the world’s most influential and credible musicians, including Nina Simone, Jah Wobble, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant, Basement Jaxx, Jethro Tull, Philip Glass and many more.
Richard Digance will play the final socially distanced gig – four times! BAFTA nominated performer and recipient of The Gold Award from The British Academy of Songwriters, Richard plays two shows on Saturday 19 and two on Sunday 20 June. Richard has been on TV too many times to count, but it's live on stage that he is most comfortable, just one man with a treasure chest of stories collected over 40 years in the music and entertainment industry.
With COVID Recovery Road Map Step 4 due around 21 June, Nick Wells added “We are of course keeping everything crossed that in the not too distant future we will be able to open our doors without restrictions so that we can all once again enjoy some of those special sold out nights at The Apex.”
Contact The Apex Box Office on 01284 758000 or visit www.theapex.co.uk for more information or to book. If any events are cancelled or postponed, you will be entitled to a refund of the ticket price