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King Center to host Hayley Westenra


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Hayley Westenra
When: 8 p.m. Friday Where: King Center for the Performing Arts, 3865 N. Wickham Road, Melbourne Cost: $25 to $45, plus handling charges Information: Call 242-2219 or visit www. kingcenter.com

She's only 18 years old, but Hayley Westenra's star already is on a trajectory toward fame.

Westenra, who comes from New Zealand and whose music is evocative of that of Enya, performs Friday at the King Center. Steve Janicki, King Center executive director, said booking her was a little difficult because she has become such a "hot ticket" among presenters.

In fact, Janicki expects Westenra to be as popular a performer as Michael Buble or Josh Groban, both of whom appeared at the King Center before they, too, became ultra popular.

"She's got one of the purest voices," Janicki said. "It's phenomenal. I think it's even better, in a lot of ways, than Enya.

Although she's not at the Buble/Groban orbit yet, she's on her way, said Janicki, who has almost 30 years presenting show business performers.

"She's still got some work to do at getting her name out there," he said. "Probably in another year, she'll get to that point."

Westenra came to Janicki's attention through television and a presenters' showcase in New York City. He booked her for last year, but because of scheduling conflicts, she had to postpone her appearance until this season.

"You work on these things for a year and a half to two years out," Janicki said.

Westenra will perform without a warm-up act. Janicki described her style of music as "kind of operatic, new agey."

source : Contact Harbaugh at 242-3717 or pharbaug@flatoday.net
credit : Allen (aka Alien)
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