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Bill Wyman getting ready to rock the Rose
Legendary rocker Bill Wyman will be Rolling into Kingston next month, accompanied by his new band of musical virtuoso.
The former Rolling Stones bassist will bring his band the Rhythm Kings to the Rose Theatre on July 30, for a night of classic blues music.
Wyman was the bassist of the Stones for more than 30 years, from 1962 to 1993.
The Rhythm Kings sees the 77-year-old return to his R&B roots, accompanied by musicians Andy Fairweather Low, Hamish Stuart, Frank Mead, Geraint Watkins, Terry Taylor, Graham Broad, Nick Payn and vocalist Beverley Skeete.
For this show, pit cushions at the front of the stage will be removed, to make way for a standing area.
The gig at the High Street theatre is another indication Rose chief executive Robert O'Dowd is willing to open the venue up to new art forms, to attract wider audiences.
The Rhythm Kings will appear the night after ska punk band Reel Big Fish perform at the venue, in a show jointly organised with Banquet Records.
Mr O'Dowd said: "At our core we're a drama house, but not everyone is in to drama.
"If we are to be Kingston's theatre, then I think we have to put on a mixture of stuff and I think Bill Wyman and Reel Big Fish is a good start.
"Bill Wyman's probably more of our core audience but not our drama audience. He's a big name for the area."
Mr O'Dowd promised there would be more to come from the Rose and Banquet.
"Jon [Tolley, Banquet Records manager] and I are really keen to get younger audiences to see music at the Rose.
"We're looking at another gig in September, although it isn't finalised yet."
Bill Wyman and the Rhythm Kings, Rose Theatre, High Street, Kingston; Wednesday, July 30, 8pm; £33.50; rosetheatrekingston.org.
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