Brian May and Kerry Ellis announce Born Free Tour (2012)
Story by Jack Foley
LEGENDARY Queen guitarist Brian May is going unplugged for a unique tour he is about to embark on with acclaimed singing star Kerry Ellis.
The two have enjoyed a hugely successful musical partnership in recent times, with Kerry earlier this year receiving a Best Solo Performance award for Anthems, the show arranged and produced by May as a showcase for her talents which premiered at London’s Royal Albert Hall.
Beginning on Monday, November 5, 2012, Brian and Kerry are heading out on the road to present their Born Free Tour, a series of 11 intimate and totally acoustic shows performed under candlelight.
These special intimate concerts provide a chance to see Ellis and May close-up, and are being especially performed to raise awareness of the work of the Born Free Foundation, the global organisation which works to protect and conserve threatened species, particularly Africa’s magnificent Lions, which across much of Africa, are now in serious decline.
Behind the decision to perform the tour is a new recording made by Brian and Kerry of Born Free, the Oscar-winning song written for the 1966 film of the same name.
Invited by Virginia McKenna’s Born Free Foundation to view and participate in its work at the Shamwari game reserve and rescue centre in South Africa’s Eastern Cape, Brian and Kerry have pledged to support Born Free both publicly and materially.
Having recorded both a large-scale production version and an acoustic version of Born Free, Brian and Kerry will release both versions on one single, with all proceeds going to the Foundation.
Brian May commented: “Over the last year, Kerry and I have been recording new material when our schedules have allowed it. As on the Anthems album, some of the tracks have very big and splendid arrangements, but we have become more and more fascinated with the magic of great songs stripped down to their core and re-interpreted in an ‘acoustic’ way.
“We find there is a purity which makes the songs speak very clearly. Kerry’s instincts as an interpreter of songs are always inspiring, and the art of arranging has always been one of my obsessions. We have found that the two of us just working live off each other can distill the very essence of a song – and that’s what we hope to bring you in these dates.
“After all, if you have great songs and a great singer, what more do you need? Well, maybe just a little bit of guitar!”
Tickets for the tour are on sale now priced between £37.50 and £39.50 depending on venue.
The Born Free UK tour dates are (all November 2012):
5 – Bury St Edmunds, The Apex
6 – Leamington Spa, The Assembly
7 – Corby, The Core at Corby Cube
9 – Tunbridge Wells, Assembly Hall Theatre
10 – Brighton, St. Georges Church
11 – London, Union Chapel
12 – St. Albans, Alban Arena
15 – Crawley, The Hawth
16 – Portsmouth, New Theatre Royal
17 – Salisbury, City Hall
19 – High Wycombe, Swan Theatre