Famed singer Mavis Staples will get the opportunity to celebrate her upcoming 80th birthday a little early this year, as Newport Folk has announced a run of three concerts set to take place in New York, Los Angeles, and Nashville in mid-May. The run of shows is being branded as Mavis & Friends: Celebrating 80 Years of Mavis Staples, and will feature performances from Staples and special guests who have yet to be announced.
The three celebratory concerts will take place at the famous Apollo Theater in New York, NY on May 9th; Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN on May 15th; and the Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles, CA on May 22nd. A portion of the proceeds from tickets sold for each of the three shows will go to benefit the Newport Festivals Foundation. All three shows will lead up to Staples’ 80th birthday on July 10th this summer. Jones is scheduled to co-headline Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado a few days following her birthday alongside Norah Jones on July 16th.
“I must be the happiest girl in the world,” Staples mentioned in a statement about the upcoming birthday shows. “After all this time, I still do what I love … I never thought I would still be singing at my age, and people seem to really want to hear me, they know me, they give me love—I’m just overwhelmed, really.”
Newport Folk did not state whether or not Staples would also be one of the performers at this year’s Newport Folk Fest, although organizers have already begun revealing part of their 2019 lineup, which includes Billy Strings & Molly Tuttle, Gregory Alan Isakov, Kacey Musgraves, Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy, and Phil Lesh & The Terrapin Family Band, just to name a few.
Tickets to all three shows will begin general on-sale on February 15th at 1 p.m. EST. Fans can head here for more info on the upcoming shows.