Cheltenham on 26th November shouldn't be too long a drive for you, or if you fancy an overnighter, why not join me in Llandudno, Cardiff or Swansea?
You know you like seeing Hayley in Wales! (that should give Richard opportunity for one of his classic one-liners!)
Best wishes Grant
Firstly, its great news to hear that HWI will be there to support Hayley at every single concert of this tour. I have been thinking that I would like to fit in at least one more concert in the middle of November, as the two I have booked so far are the 5th and the 28th. Birmingham is the closest. However, I see ( at the moment) that you are on you own at Cardiff and it would be good to have some company. I know where the stage door is at that venue too I plan to give the box offices a ring to see what sort of seat I can get before finally making up my mind.
... I know where the stage door is at that venue too
I suppose you know it also in case of Cheltenham, don't you ?
Actually, I haven't been to the venue in Cheltenham before - but I see that so far, you are on your own at that concert too. Cheltenham is certainly nearer for me that Wales. Oh, I'm even more confused now than I was before
As Roger has already commented, Fiona Pears and Ian Tilley will no longer be the standard accompaniment for many of Hayley's shows, although that doesn't rule out the possibility of any future concerts together. However, this does give Hayley the opportunity to work with a different live set up for the River of Dreams tour.
When we spoke top Fiona on Monday (after her excellent concert), she mentioned that Andrew Moore (who seems to be known professionally as A J Moore) would be playing guitar with Hayley on many concerts. Those of you who were at the recent Aberglasney concert or at Buxton in April will have already seen Andrew support Hayley.
If you take a look at his MySpace account HERE you will note that he lists Hayley's River of Dreams tour amongst his forthcoming concerts.
His latest blog entry states:
Friday, June 27, 2008 Touring with Hayley Westenra Hi guys
I'm playing guitar for Hayley Westenra's upcoming UK tour to promote the fourth album release 'River of Dreams'. Its a great show and well worth coming to see so scan your eyes down the gig list and pick a venue. Its pretty obvious which venues are with her : )
We'll be doing a number of solo spots together so you'll be able to watch us strutting our stuff, just in a very soft classical way.
While it is a bit of a shame and a change for Fiona and Ian not to be supporitng Hayley, I am very much looking forward to hearing the new arrangements of some of Hayley's songs with a different live setup of guitar and string quartet. Songs like "Santa Lucia" and "Both Sides Now" will sound somewhat different with guitar rather than piano and I'm intrigued as to whether the use of a string quartet and guitarist will have any impact on the live set at all. Maybe "River of Dreams" will make a welcome return to the set?
Whilst I will be as sad as everyone else not to see Fiona and Ian perform as an integral part of Hayley's stage 'family', Monday's concert proved to me, without a shadow of a doubt, that Fiona is a fantastic performer in her own right. The band she performed with are also superb musicians and they have their own direction to go.
People generally resist change because we are comfortable with what we know and are used to. I'm sure whatever new direction this change will bring, we will soon get used to and fall in love with it. It seems inevitable that it will work because it is Hayley!
All I ask is that Hayley's new musicians, whoever they are, are as warm and as friendly as Fiona and Ian have been over the past few years.