Following a successful first season with events spanning all genres of entertainment, from stand-up comedy and musical cabaret to jazz trios and West End favourites - and featuring artists such as Frisky and Mannish, Sharon D. Clarke and Hadley Fraser - the second season of events in the St. James Studio is officially announced today.
Tonight, 6 January, two professional groups of singers will be the first acts of 2013 to be welcomed in to the studio. Young and dynamic chamber choir The Delphian Singers will perform at 3pm and are followed by multi award-winning all male a cappella ensemble, The Songmen at 7.30pm. Cabaret Weekends continue on Saturday 12 January as Sophie Walsh-Harrington delves into the depths of uncensored lust and melodrama in her internationally successful cabaret show The Damsel in Shining Armour, then some of the West End's finest vocalists come together on Saturday 19 January to celebrate the career of the world's most accomplished contemporary composer, Burt Bacharach, in Bacharach: Of Life and Lovesong. Lush Life: A Cabaret about Drinking will salute libations - and the results - on Saturday 26 January, whilst versatile and highly regarded singer and performer Jessica Walker's Pat Kirkwood is Angry comes to the studio on Saturday 2 and Sunday 3 February, following hugely successful runs in Manchester and Leeds. Tony Award nominated actress and singer Anita Gilette's one woman show of music and memories, After All, follows on Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 February. Further Cabaret Weekend highlights include the return of the hugely successful Peter Straker's Brel on Saturday 16 February and Success Express, mentoring emerging artists, on Sunday 17 February.
In addition to Comedy Thursdays, Jazz and Roots Fridays and Cabaret Weekends - as seen on the bill last season - the St. James Studio will now also throw open its doors on Wednesday nights, kicking off with Vin's Night In! on Wednesday 9 January, featuring the multi-talented actor Laurence Fox. A new comedy night, The Political Party with Matt Forde, combining topical stand-up and a big interview with a political heavyweight, follows on Wednesday 16 January and Wednesday 13 February with special guests George Galloway and Nigel Farage respectively. Four fabulous singers will sweep through life in upper-middle class England and behind the scenes of a 1970s musical game show in hilarious musical comedy romp, Vocalarity, on Wednesday 23 January. British singer-songwriter Rosabella Gregory will bring her classical songwriting with a filmic twist, infused with improvisational elements, to the studio on Wednesday 27 February.
Comedy at St. James Studio in 2013 will begin in style on Thursday 10 January with two award-winning comedians, David Mills and Mae Martin, on the bill. David Mills: The Gospel Truth is the brand new show from the stylish raconteur who won the Hackney Empire New Act of the Year, 2011. Martin, winner of Best International Performer at the Brighton Fringe 2012, will perform her Edinburgh show, Mae Day which received rave reviews at last year's festival. Chortle Best Newcomer 2007 and Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Newcomer 2009, Carl Donnelly, will be the headline act on Thursday 17 January, with support from Ed Gamble and Lucy Beaumont. Sarah Kendall, nominee for the prestigious Perrier comedy award in 2004, brings her comedy with brains, Get Up, Stand Up, to the studio on Thursday 24 January, following her sold out Australian tour and Edinburgh run. Comedy actress and stand-up Sara Pascoe, who has made appearances in popular series such as The Thick of It and Twenty Twelve, will perform her sell out Edinburgh show in the studio on Thursday 31 January, with support from Tania Edwards. Totally unique sketch comedy duo Totally Tom present their second sell out show, set in a prison, on Thursday 7 February. St. James Studio is proud to present a St. Valentine's special on Thursday 14 February, featuring musical genius and sex symbol Earl Okin and soul songstress Lizzie Deane in an evening which promises to be rib tickling, heart pounding and ear pleasing in equal measure. Rounding off a fantastic February line-up is ventriloquist extraordinaire Nina Conti, the last chance to catch her in the UK before she goes to work abroad. Nina will be supported by Sarah-Louise Young.
Once again, Dorian Ford, one of London's most highly acclaimed jazz musicians, hosts Jazz and Roots Fridays at the St. James Studio, a night which aims to link tradition based contemporary music to an overall jazz programme. Highlights will include Fumi Okiji's Old Time Jazz Band on Friday 11 January, Alex Garnett's Jazz Ambassadors on Friday 18 January, UK guitar legend John Etheridge and his Blue Spirits Trio on Friday 25 January, the Byron Wallen Quartet on Friday 1 February, Zoe Rahman Trio on Friday 8 February and Mark Jennett and Geoff Gascoyne on Friday 8 March. In addition to the Jazz and Roots Fridays programme, which will be announced in full at a later date, one of Britain's top singers and a unique interpreter of popular song, award-winning performer Barb Jungr, will bring her own writing and interpretation of great songs to the studio, in a fabulous new collection, on Friday 15 February.