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2012 Flights & Sounds Summer Festival To Present World Beat Weekend August 9 Through 11

IRVINE, Calif., Aug. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Come to World Beat Weekend at the Great Park's Flights & Sounds Summer Festival  for a musical world tour featuring Persian electronica trio Niyaz, multiple Grammy Award-winning sensation Ladysmith Black Mambazo and DJ Rekha with special guest Dohl Nation and the dancers of the blue 13, Thursday, August 9 through Saturday, August 11. Enjoy African rhythms, contemporary Persian electronic music, as well as Bollywood and Bhangra dance in three unique venues at the Great Park.

"The Great Park is proud to host World Beat Weekend, a celebration of diverse music and dance from Africa, India and the Middle East," said Beth Krom, Chair of the Orange County Great Park Corporation. "This program offers visitors a unique opportunity to enjoy a wide range of cultural experiences in a setting unlike any other in Southern California."

The weekend kicks off on Thursday, August 9, at 8:15 p.m., when the Persian and Indian music trio Niyaz performs with a Sufi dancer in the Palm Court Arts Complex.  Niyaz blends modern electronica with old Persian folk songs and mystical Sufi poems.

On Friday, August 10 at 8:15 p.m., hear Africa's superstar a cappella group Ladysmith Black Mambazo perform South African musical traditions to the sounds of gospel music on the Runway Stage. The harmonies of Ladysmith Black Mambazo were made famous on Paul Simon's Graceland album twenty-five years ago and now, they sound better than ever.

World Beat Weekend wraps up with a lively dance party when  DJ Rekha, with special guests Dohl Nation and the dancers of blue 13, spins Bhangra and Bollywood music on the Dance Concourse on Saturday, August 11 at 8:15 p.m.  Get there by 7:45 p.m. for free dance instruction from Atomic Ballroom.

British born, New York City based, DJ Rekha, has been called the "Ambassador of Bhangra" by the New York Times and named one of the most influential South Asians by Newsweek. Rekha is among the first DJs to merge classic Bhangra and Bollywood sounds into the language of contemporary electronic dance music.   

Unforgettable Experience in Unique Venues

Beyond the varied and rich musical line up, the Great Park Flights & Sounds Summer Festival provides a unique setting that adds to the visitor experience. The musical performances take place in three specially-designed iconic venues at the Great Park.

  • New this year, the Palm Court Arts Complex venue will feature a place to mix and mingle under 54 illuminated Canary Island Palm Trees, delivering an outdoor club-like setting unequaled in Orange County.
  • The Runway Stage venue will showcase the Festival headliners and offers concert seating and spacious lawns for those bringing their blankets and chairs.
  • The Dance Concourse venue features the iconic black and white checkerboard dance floor and includes dance instruction from Atomic Ballroom at 7:45 p.m. under the glow of the Great Park Balloon.

Upcoming Festival Schedule and Featured Musicians

Brits and Celts Weekend – The New British and Irish Invasion – August 17-18

  • The Dunwells: Friday, August 17, Palm Court Arts Complex - These folk-rockers from Leeds have been called "the next U2"
  • Solas: Saturday, August 18, Runway Stage - The quintessential Irish-American band, starring Seamus Egan in traditional and contemporary Celtic music

Made in America Weekend – Blues, Swing and Great Guitars - August 23-25 

  • Jim Washburn's Guitar Picks : Thursday, August 23, Palm Court Arts Complex – A one-of-a-kind program curated by local critic Jim Washburn and featuring the John Jorgenson Quintet, legendary bluesman Junior Watson and Mark Turnbull
  • Pete Jacobs Band: Friday, August 24, Dance Concourse - Swing music, Motown and classic rock, with dance instruction by Atomic Ballroom
  • The Del McCoury Band: Saturday, August 25, Runway Stage – Back by popular demand, the Del McCoury Band returns to the Great Park with high, lonesome vocals and a knife-sharp band that keep the bluegrass flame alive

Summer's End Weekend – Dance Your Way into Labor DayAugust 30 - 31

  • The Aquabats: Thursday, August 30, Palm Court Arts Complex –The first all-crime fighting all-surfing rock supergroup in history! High-energy New Wave and SKA for Rock 'n Roll lovers of all ages.
  • Lavay Smith and Her Red-Hot Skillet Lickers: Friday, August 31, Dance Concourse - Bay Area blues and swing, hot and sweet!

Live music begins at 8:15 p.m. Dance instruction will be provided on select nights beginning at 7:45 p.m. The Hangar Cafe opens at 6:00 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and will feature a fresh selection of delicious food and beverages. On Thursdays, light refreshments and beverages will be available for purchase in the Palm Court. Admission is free, and parking is $10.

The Palm Court Arts Complex Open During Summer Festival

The Palm Court Arts Complex will be open during the Flights & Sounds Summer Festival with exciting and diverse opportunities to view exhibitions and engage with artists in the creative process. Be sure to check out the following on view at the festival:  

  • Farmers to Flyers Exhibition in the Great Park Gallery
  • Artist-in-Residence Andre Woodward Open Studio Hours in the Artists Studios
  • Artist-in-Residence Amy Catarina Fiber Art Installation in the Palm Court Plaza
  • Contemporary Artists Depict 1942 Exhibition in the Artists Studios

The Orange County Great Park is located at Sand Canyon and Marine Way, and can easily be reached by the 5 or 405 freeways.

For more information, visit, please visit www.ocgp.org or call 866-829-3829.

About the Orange County Great ParkHundreds of thousands of visitors from all over Southern California enjoy the Orange County Great Park's current array of recreational and educational opportunities, including views from the iconic Great Park Balloon that rises 400 feet in the air and provides a panoramic view of Orange County.  Other Great Park features include the Carousel, Farm + Food Lab, Kids Rock Playground, Walkable Historical Timeline, Palm Court Arts Complex, North Lawn recreation area and historic Hangar 244.  The Great Park also hosts a variety of special events that provide unique experiences for the entire family, including the Growing the Park Anniversary Celebration, annual Pumpkin Harvest, Great Night! Family New Year's Eve, Flights & Sounds Summer Festival and the weekly Great Park Farmers Market. The Great Park, with its approximately 1,300-acre master plan, is the centerpiece of the redevelopment of the publicly-owned portion of the 4,700-acre former Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro. For more information, please visit www.ocgp.org.

SOURCE Orange County Great Park

Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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