2:37pm Tuesday 17th April 2012
By Nick Hitchens
South London’s premier open air venue will host legendary keyboard player Rick Wakeman as part of a two day festival attracting some of the best rock and then classical musicians around.
Crystal Palace Park, including the famous bowl, has played host to artists such as Pink Floyd, Rod Stewart, Bob Marley and the Wailers and The Cure.
The venue was also frequently been the home of world class classical concerts, holding Proms in the Park.
Organisers Crystal Palace Garden Party aim to bring these two traditions together under one roof and return the Crystal Palace Bowl to its former glory.
Organiser Mike Fox said: "The old rock concerts were so majestic and it is such a shame in recent years the bowl has not been used to its potential. At the same time we wanted to bring the proms back, so the garden party was born to bring the two together."
Held over two days on June 23 and 24, the event will also include live comedy, a funfair, food and drink and excerpts from Shakespeare, performed in the maze.
Mr Fox said: "At the centre of the maze is this fantastic large space and we thought it would be a great addition to have actors performing there in the breaks between the acts."
Joining Wakeman, who played the venue almost forty years ago, for a Saturday of rock, will be Hawkwind, Focus, and Martin Turner’s Wishbone Ash.
The following day, in celebration of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, will be Jubilee Proms, featuring the London gala Symphony Orchestra and soloist Juliette Pochin.
He said: "A few years ago council would have put on days like this but now money is so tight. Others have tried but faltered but I am confident this could become a regular feature. If all goes well we could look to hold the event twice annually."
Tickets will be available from The Fairfield Halls, Croydon and online shortly and Mr Fox is hoping of adding more acts to both days.
For ticketing details visit www.crystalpalacegardenparty.com
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