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Show Of Hands, recently the subject of an exclusive FolkCastpodcast interview, have announced that they are to celebrate 20 years together as a duo with a return to the "Kensington Village Hall" - a.k.a. the 5,000-seat Royal Albert Hall in the centre of London.
The duo - Steve Knightley and Phil Beer - say they have taken "a gamble" by hiring the huge venue, but three previous visits were all sell-out successes, and the Devon-based folk musicians are now even more well-known than for those previous shows.
The next show at the Albert will be on Easter Saturday … next year! However, tickets go on sale on Wednesday April 20th 2011 and prices have now been revealed - ranging from £25 to £40.
Show Of Hands first played and sold out the Albert Hall in 1996, to the surprise of the sceptics. In 2001 their legions of fans from the UK and across the Channel descended on Kensington again, when the show was filmed by Carlton TV and, unusually, the Albert Hall witnessed a raffle! Five years later, they were back for a hat trick success in SW7.
So far there are no details of what the show will include, but fans can surely expect something special in the shape of guest musicians. They will certainly be accompanied by their long term special guest - double bass player and vocalist Miranda Sykes.
Steve says: “Hiring somewhere as high profile as the Albert Hall is obviously not something you undertake lightly but it’s a challenge we relish. We are lucky enough to have an incredible fan base, not only in the UK but in France, Holland, Germany and beyond and hopefully a lot of them will want to help us celebrate 20 years as Show of Hands.”
Phil added: “We have had three hugely memorable nights at the Albert Hall and it will be great to see so many of our fans under one roof again in what will amazingly be our 20th year on the road!”
Show of Hands have a characteristically busy year in 2011 and will soon set out on a standing gig tour of the UK (May 4 -21) while their festival season takes in Glastonbury (June 26), Shrewsbury, Sidmouth and the revived Bristol Folk Festival (April 30), as well as their own signature festival at Dorset’s Abbotsbury Sub Tropical Gardens on July 2.
Show Of Hands at the Royal Albert Hall - 8pm, Saturday April 7th 2012.
Tickets: Grand Tier £40; Loggia £40; Second Tier £37.50; Stalls £37.50; Arena £35, Circle £30 (restricted view £25). Box office: 0207 589 8212 or 0845 401 5045. www.royalalberthall.com.
UPDATE: On the first day of sale, tickets are selling very fast! See the Albert Hall website for live info on seat availability.