CityFest announces headline acts

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – A popular country music duo and a local fan favorite group will headline Alabaster’s annual CityFest celebration, the Alabaster Arts Council announced on April 5

The country duo Maddie and Tae, which is composed of Maddie Marlow and Taylor Dye, will take the main stage at 9 p.m. during the 15th annual CityFest at Alabaster Municipal Park on June 3.

Maddie and Tae are well-known for their hit singles “Girl in a Country Song,” “Fly” and “Shut up and Fish,” and have earned praise from NPR, “Rolling Stone” and “The Atlantic” music critics.

“Attendees at Alabaster CityFest are in for a real treat,” said Jamie Cole, who chairs artist and media relations for the Alabaster Arts Council. “Maddie and Tae are incredible songwriters, singers and entertainers. It’s a change of pace for us at CityFest, which is good… they’re a great fit for our family event and will appeal to all ages.”

Taking the main stage just before Maddie and Tae will be the Birmingham-based Black Jacket Symphony performing at 7 p.m.

This will mark Black Jacket Symphony’s second consecutive performance at CityFest, and the group will perform Queen’s album “A Night at the Opera” in its entirety.

“The Black Jacket Symphony offers a unique concert experience by recreating classic albums in a live performance setting. The album is performed in its entirety by a group of hand-picked musicians specifically selected for each album,” read an Alabaster Arts Council statement. “With no sonic detail being overlooked, the musicians do whatever it takes to musically reproduce the album. Following the album and a brief intermission, the Black Jacket Symphony returns to the stage to perform a collection of greatest hits by the evening’s artist.”

During the performance, singer-songwriter Marc Martel, a five-time Juno Award winner, will provide lead vocals to faithfully recreate Freddie Mercury with each song.

“I’ve been following Marc’s career for a while,” Cole said. “He’s a great entertainer in his own right. But in this show, he’s really something special.”

“We had to cut the show short last year because of weather,” Cole said. “Not only were they not able to finish, but they had to perform on a dark stage without their lights and effects because of the rain. That was disappointing, but when we heard Marc and BJS doing the Queen show, we knew we wanted to invite them back!”

This year’s CityFest title sponsors will be Central State Bank and Coca-Cola, which help to keep the event free to local residents each year. Over the past 15 years, CityFest has drawn tens of thousands of attendees from throughout central Alabama and beyond.

Gates to the free CityFest event open at 9 a.m. at Municipal Park. In addition to musical acts on multiple stages throughout the day, CityFest will feature a kids area, vendors and a cruise-in car show.

For more information about the event, visit Alabastercityfest.com.