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LA VIDA (article first published : 2003-06-10)

La Vida means life and thatís whatís being celebrated in glorious style at The Barnyard Theatre at Gateway from June 3 to July 27 with a wild tour through the music of Latino legends.

Audiences can rock, samba and rumba to the sounds of Latin America where love, passion and pulsating rhythm are melted into an explosive mix. La Vida is directed by Clive Allardyce (better known for his role in the hit drag show Mince) whose presence adds glamour and extravagance to this percussive delight.

La Vida features a hip-swinging, rumba-shaking 11-piece cast consisting of a full brass section, percussion, drums, keyboards as well as electric, acoustic and bass guitar. Jason Ralph on lead male vocals explodes with energy in numbers like Copacabana, Quando Quando, Bailomos and also takes on many of the Latin greats from the Gypsy Kings to Ricky Martin. Bruce Taljaard is the new talent on lead vocals bringing audiences the smooth sounds of Santa Esmeralda, Marc Anthony and many more.

The female vocalist is popular Shelley McLean who will perform songs like Toni Braxtonís Spanish Guitar, Madonnaís La Isla Bonita, Gloria Estefanís Congo and a tantalizing medley by sexy Shakira.

Musical director is Callie Thomson on keyboards. Barry Thomson is on guitar and vocals with a highlight being a multi-tribute to Carlos Santana. He also sings songs like Sheís Not There, Smooth and Soul Sacrifice and the show stopping tribute to Zorba The Greek.

On drums and percussion is South Africaís top drummer Jorge Bastos who has lived in Brazil and Europe. Adding to the percussion is Richard Ellis with Barnyard regulars Mark Freel on bass guitar and Chris Luke on saxophone. The rest of the brass section is made up of Michael Magner on trumpet and Ross Butcher on trombone.

Tickets R70 pp with Buy One Get One Free promotions running on Tuesday night and Sunday matinee shows. Booking and inquiries on 031 566 3045, e-mail barngate@mweb.co.za or visit www.barnyardtheatre.co.za




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