Star-studded line-up at International Eisteddfod

Published date: 11 February 2013 |
Published by: Thomas Morton
Read more articles by Thomas Morton


TV DANCING stars have been added to the bill at an annual festival.

Strictly Come Dancing couple James and Ola Jordan will add glitz and glamour to the star-studded line-up at this year’s Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod.

The twinkle toed pair from the popular BBC show will share the stage with veteran musicians Buena Vista Social Club to bring a Latin and Cuban flavour to Thursday night.

The 67th Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod, Wales’ biggest music and dance festival, takes place this year from Tuesday, July 9, to Sunday, July 14, at the Royal International Pavilion site.

Husband and wife James and Ola have starred in the BBC’s Saturday night show since 2004.

James danced with Denise Van Outen in the latest series of Strictly. The pair narrowly lost first place to Flavia Cacace and Olympic gymnast Louis Smith.

James previously reached the final with Pamela Stephenson and also danced with One Show star Alex Jones.

Ola is a former winner of the sparkly dancefest with BBC sports presenter Chris Hollins, and also partnered Wrexham’s own Robbie Savage.

The couple are part of a week-long line-up of international stars.

Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra will close the festival on Sunday night ahead of a spectacular fireworks extravaganza.

Other stars making an appearance include Scottish percussionist Evelyn Glennie and English soprano Claire Rutter.

From Wales there will be four top male voice choirs, royal harpist Claire Jones, tenor Gwyn Hughes Jones and choir Only Men Aloud.

International stars include top American tenor Noah Stewart, Kiwi bass Jonathan Lemalu and Bulgarian mezzo-soprano Miroslava Jordanova.

There will also be a top Trinidadian steel band, the two-time Choir of the World winners from the Philippines, as well as the Buena Vista Social Club, the pre-Castro Cuban musicians and singers rediscovered by American guitar great Ry Cooder.

Musical director Eilir Owen Griffiths said: “I am delighted to have put together such a strong line-up and one that is truly global in its scope and one that shows that Llangollen still attracts the very best to come and perform here.

“It’s a very exciting programme and is very different and we need to show that we
can do that and remain true to the spirit of the International Eisteddfod.

“We have a truly worldwide line-up which is a real mixture but I feel it is a good fit.

“We have international class performers from around the world and that combined with the colour and atmosphere generated by our competitors and the welcome they receive makes this a unique event.”

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