2018  Hazel O'Connor 1

The line-up for this year’s Morton Stanley Festival in Redditch has been announced and headlining this year will be 1980’s icon Hazel O’Connor.

One of the first female stars of the 80’s, award winning singer-songwriter Hazel O’Connor originally rose to fame in 1980 starring in the film Breaking Glass. She will be performing some of her most popular hits including Eighth Day, Will You, Big Brother, Monsters in Disguise, Calls The Tune, If Only, Give Me An Inch, Blackman and Hanging Around on the afternoon of Saturday 18th August.

Hazel will be accompanied by virtuoso saxophonist and vocalist Clare Hirst (who has played with The Belle Stars, Communards and David Bowie) and Sarah Fisher (Eurythmics) on keyboards and vocals to create a classy yet vibrant performance.

Also headlining on the 18th will be Matrix Club Matrix who are a Club Classics and 90′s Dance Anthems band with a unique, unforgettable and absolutely ‘must see class act’ bringing an uplifting, tribute to the music that shaped an era.

Midland’s founded band Last Hounds will also be performing last on the Saturday having recently toured the UK off the back of their Debut Self-Titled EP. They are becoming increasingly well known for their live performances, with endless amounts of energy and attitude. Their music is raw and provocative, fusing elements of punk, hardcore and hip-hop into one.

Sunday evening will see headline performances from “swamp’n’roll” band Elvis Fontenot who have successfully turned traditional cajun and zydeco music, eclectic covers and original songs into their own high energy trademark performances.

Following them will be Hollie Vee and the Hubkaps, a Lo- Fi ‘Rock n Soul’ band with tons of energy. A massively popular band across Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent, the band will be playing rock and roll in a Rockabilly style that will have the whole audience up and dancing.

Local bands, groups and organisations of all musical genres will be performing on the main stage throughout the weekend, supporting the headline acts. Local acts will also take to the acoustic tent.

Firm favourites from last year, Locked in Radio will be returning supported by two other local DJ tents.

NEW for 2018, based on feedback from festival goers in previous years, there will also be a fancy dress competition with a prize for the best dressed pirate – no matter what their age!

On top of some amazing music, once again the fun filled, family friendly festival will feature Tommy Wilson Fun Fair, children’s activities and numerous stands, promising something for everyone.

And for any visitors feeling peckish during their trip to the festival there will be numerous food stalls including Pancakes, Indian, Pizza, Caribbean, Thai, burgers or hot dogs we have something for everyone to try as the food festival also makes a return for 2018. And if you fancy grabbing a drink there will be coffee and tea stalls, milk shakes, slush cones and a licensed bar!

There will also be a firework display on the Saturday evening.

Cllr Roger Bennett, Redditch Borough Council’s portfolio holder for Leisure, said: “We are very excited to have 80’s star Hazel O’Connor attending the festival this year alongside several other award winning headline acts. Complemented by the local acts and performers, DJ’s, food festival, activities, displays, community stalls and the fair, Morton Stanley Festival really does have something for everyone no matter what age you are.

“We’ve listened to your feedback from previous years and adapted to give you more of what you want – including a fancy dress competition – and entertainment of all kinds will span Redditch’s 95-acre Morton Stanley Park this August. We hope to continue improving the festival year on year offering high quality entertainment to appeal to a wider range of audiences.”

The Morton Stanley Festival is a free event for the whole community organised by Redditch Borough Council. This year it is on Saturday and Sunday the weekend of August 18th and 19th, starting at 12noon on both days.

For more information please contact the arts and events team on 01527 534030.