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Hot Town, Summer in the City: Madrid's "Veranos de la Villa 2008"



180 Concerts, Ballets, Operas, Plays in July & August - Many Free

Diana Krall, Macy Gray, Gloria Gaynor, Rubén Blades, Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Amy Winehouse, Shakira to Perform at Rock in Rio


MADRID, Spain, June 10, 2008 - Madrid's going to be a non-stop party this summer.  More than 500,000 are expected to attend Rock in Rio where more than 60 stellar musicians are set to perform rock, electronic and world music from June 27 to July 6.  And on July 1, Veranos de la Villa 2008, an international celebration of music, dance and theatre kicks off.  "Summer in the City 2008" will present 180 concerts, ballets, operas, and flamenco shows in gardens, plazas and theatres - even in the streets - throughout Madrid running through August 24.  Now in its 23rd year, the summer festival includes many free events, and invites some of the world's most legendary artists to perform jazz, blues, classical and world music, opera, ballet, flamenco and zarzuela, Spain's version of lyric opera.  Additionally, there are 43 shows for children, 200 movies in the open-air and a circus.

      At Rock in Rio, celebrated musicians like Neil Young, Alanis Morissette and Wally López (6/27); El Canto del Loco (6/28); Shakira, Amy Winehouse and Satoshi Tomiie (7/04); The Police and Suzanne Vega (7/05); and Bob Dylan (7/06) are a few of the 60 big-name artists that will take the stage at the purpose-built Ciudad del Rock (City of Rock), 20 miles south of Madrid in Arganda del Rey (6/27-6/28 and 7/04-7/06).

      On July 1, jazz singer Diana Krall will kick off a series of 32 concerts - as part of Summer in the City 2008 - by some of the great names in popular music at the Conde Duque Cultural Center.  Renowned singers set to perform through August 1 are: Gloria Gaynor (7/02), Lucio Dalla (7/05), Erykah Badu (7/11), Macy Gray (7/21), Rubén Blades, (7/29), Paul Anka (7/31) and many other international artists.

      The Sabatini Gardens will showcase the emblematic Spanish entertainment of zarzuela and flamenco with 26 performances of three zarzuelas (7/12-7/31 and 8/19-8/24) and 13 shows with flamenco greats like Enrique Morente, Lole Montoya, Diego Carrasco, El Lebrijano, Antonio Canale and the Company of Manuela Carrasco, among others (8/02-8/16).  

      The Conde Duque's central patio will host the Duke Ellington Ballet of Roland Petit with Lucía Lacarra and the Asami Maki Ballet of Tokyo (8/05-8/07).  Homage to Balanchine and Fancy Free will be performed by Joaquín de Luz and soloists from the New York City Ballet (8/12 and 8/13).  There will even be dancing in the streets right in front of the Museo de Arte Reina Sofía with the "Danzacalles" program (7/14-7/16).  Other dance companies will perform in the open-air at the Jardines del Descubrimiento.  And a troupe of contortionists from Mama Africa, The Circus of Color will enthrall spectators August 20 to 24.      

      The city's former slaughterhouse, Matadero Madrid, will present plays including MacbethLadyMacbeth based on Shakespeare's play and directed by Carlos Alfaro (5/29-7/12); Cheek by Jowl will stage Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida directed by Declan Donnellan (7/17-7/27), and Euripides' The Trojan Women directed by Mario Gas (8/12-9/28).  A play by Calderón de la Barca will be directed by Manuel Canseco at the Galileo Gardens (7/10-8/31).

      Many shows and events are free of charge. For the fifth year, the city's monumental 17th century Plaza Mayor will be an appropriate setting for Wagner's The Valkyrie, performed by the West-Eastern Orchestra Divan, with Daniel Barenboim conducting (8/05).  "Summer in the Street" will showcase more than 30 events in several of Madrid's plazas, the Temple of Debod and other venues, including "Music for the Sunset" (7/04-8/22), which will feature 14 free concerts by orchestras and string quartets.  Well-known pianist Sylvia Torán will play in the Sabatini Gardens on July 14 as part of the series.

      Don't leave the kids at home; there's plenty to keep them occupied in Madrid with free puppet shows in Retiro Park (Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 7/07-9/02) and movies in the open air Parque de la Bombilla (6/26-8/31).

      Prices and times for "Summer in the City" vary by venue and performance.   Admission ranges from about $30 to $108.  Tickets for Rock in Rio are $75 to $105.  Go to and

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