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THE BLACK BOX Sets Live Music Series Events

THE BLACK BOX, downtown Franklin's new theater, music, and event venue, presents two special evenings of live music, featuring the April Hall Quartet on Valentine's Day and Celtic singer-songwriter Robbie O'Connell on February 20.

On Saturday, February 14, renowned vocalist April Hall takes audiences on a special Valentine's Day journey through The Great American Songbook, showcasing the most enduring and influential Golden Age standards of the Broadway stage and Hollywood screen. With her swinging all-star band, Hall interprets our most treasured classics by legendary masters of song to deliver a deeply moving evening of sentiment, humor, heartbreak and romance. Her voice described as "glorious" by The Boston Globe, Hall combines her deep roots in southern gospel and blues with an urban soulfulness and jazz sophistication. A graduate of Berklee College of Music, where she received the prestigious Louis Armstrong Performance Award, Hall has done projects for Atlantic Records under the direction of Arif Mardin for the legendary Chaka Kahn, Melissa Manchester and Bette Midler and has performed with artists such as Rosemary Clooney, Al Jarreau, Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius and Dinah Shore. Hall's "Room for Two" was named one of Jazz Times top 50 Jazz Records of 2012. Hall will be joined for the BLACK BOX Jazz series event by pianist Tim Ray, bassist Mark Poniatowski and drummer Kenny Hadley.

On Friday, February 20, THE BLACK BOX New England Artists Series presents a memorable sojourn with acclaimed singer/songwriter Robbie O'Connell, called "a national treasure" in Ireland and "a master of Irish music" in the United States. A native of Waterford, Ireland, O'Connell emerged as an artist of major stature with his 1982 debut recording, "Close to the Bone," and subsequently toured with Mick Moloney and Jimmy Keane and with Eileen Ivers and Seamus Egan in the Green Fields of America. His extensive collaboration with the Clancy Brothers, his uncles, includes several CDs and a 1992 appearance at Carnegie Hall. O'Connell also headlined a 1994 celebration of Irish music at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and was seen by an estimated 500 million people worldwide on the telecast of a live tribute to Bob Dylan at Madison Square Garden, a performance that Rolling Stone magazine described as "breathtaking."?O'Connell's recordings are critically acclaimed on both sides of the Atlantic and have received top honors and recognition, including Boston's WUMB Top Acoustic Album of the Year and a prestigious Boston Music Award as Outstanding Celtic Act.

Both music series concerts begin at 8:00. THE BLACK BOX, the home of the Franklin Performing Arts Company (FPAC), is located at 15 West Central Street. Tickets are $20 for the April Hall Valentine's Day concert, Love Songs from The Great American Songbook. Tickets for the evening with Celtic musician Robbie O'Connell are $26 for adults and $18 for students. For ticket purchase or more information, visit or call (508) 528-3370.

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