Singer/songwriter Katie Melua’s culture fix

PUBLISHED: 13:10 23 November 2016 | UPDATED: 13:10 23 November 2016

Katie will be joined for the concert by the Gori Women’s Choir from Georgia

Katie will be joined for the concert by the Gori Women’s Choir from Georgia


Multi award-winning recording artist Katie Melua comes to G Live, Guildford, later this month as part of her winter tour with the Gori Women’s Choir. Although she now lives in London, she was based for many years in Redhill and is a former student of The Brit School in Croydon. Here, we find out her favourite cultural haunts...

Singer song-writer Katie Melua is looking forward to heading back to home turf for a concert at G LiveSinger song-writer Katie Melua is looking forward to heading back to home turf for a concert at G Live

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine November 2016


If I want to go to the cinema I… try to find a traditional cinema with comfy seats, like the one near us in Barnes. It used to be an old music studio called the Olympic Studios but was converted back into a cinema and is now the heart of the whole village. I’m not a fan of romantic comedy unless it’s Woody Allen, but I’m quite partial to a bit of sci-fi or a historical drama on a figure I’m interested in.

The last film I saw was… That was Café Society by Woody Allen; it’s a classic Woody Allen, which was exactly what I was hoping for, but the music in it stole the show for me. Set in the ‘20s and ‘30s, there are some very authentic jazz bar scenes with musicians on stage. It really helps to transport you back in time to what I imagine the atmosphere used to be like in LA and New York during that period.

For my theatre fix… I like to have a show recommended by a friend. I love the ballet and plays, especially ones by production companies that are experimental. I remember being blown away by the first immersive plays that Punchdrunk put on in abandoned factories in London back in the mid-noughties.

If I get a chance to go to a concert… I like seeing up-and-coming musicians in smaller venues. I also enjoy going to rock gigs. I loved seeing The Black Keys in Brixton and Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, and of course enjoy seeing the band that my husband is in, Toseland.

I’m currently reading… Hoagy Carmichael’s biography. He’s one of my favourite songwriters and wrote Georgia on my Mind and Stardust. His story begins in Indiana in 1899 and I’m up to the part where’s he’s living in New York in the 1930s.

The last time I went to my local library was… a few weeks ago. I love hanging out at the library; I find it very inspiring and if I had all the time in the world that’s where I’d spend every minute.

At home I’m most likely to be listening to… the Mishima soundtrack by Philip Glass, especially if I’m packing to fly somewhere as I usually need to be packing quicker. That album is a great alternative and additive to caffeine.

Whereas in the car, I’m most likely to be listening to… Bill Withers. His songs are basically sunshine in audio- waves. Very handy in Britain.

The TV programme that I never miss is… Girls. It’s funny and feels very real – especially when it comes to relationships, friendships and career dilemmas for the young generation growing up now.

My favourite cultural event in Surrey is... There are so many to choose from but, for now, it would have to be my forthcoming show at 
G Live in Guildford where I will also be joined on stage by the 23-piece Gori Women’s Choir from Georgia where I was born. Masters of the ancient Georgian tradition of polyphonic singing, they are a completely unique vocal orchestra. Working with them has been so inspiring and I am immensely looking forward to performing with them across the UK and Europe this winter.

• Katie Melua and the Gori Women’s Choir perform at G Live on Wednesday November 23 at 7.30pm. Together they will perform new material from Melua’s forthcoming recording project as well as a selection of classic songs from her six-album catalogue. Box office: 01483 369350. Web: Follow Katie on Twitter at @katiemelua


More about Katie

Katie Melua on finding her soulmate, her Redhill upbringing and BRIT School

Mike Batt on songwriting, discovering music stars, The Wombles and Farnham life

More from Surrey Life


As we head into Autumn, the change in season is all around us. From the leaves on the trees turning burnt orange and fiery red, to dark mornings and nights bookending our days. As we put the clocks back an hour to battle the darkness, here’s some top tips on how you can keep your home warm and costs down this Autumn.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:55

Enjoy this 2 hour, 3.5 mile (5.6 km) walk around Nutfield and Priory Farm

Read more
Yesterday, 11:35

After a glittering ceremony at G Live Guildford on 13 September, we announce the winners of the 2018 Surrey Life Food & Drink Awards 2018

Read more
Yesterday, 11:31

With growing conditions to rival that of some of the best Champagne houses in France, the south east’s sparkling wine production is booming. We excusively introduce a newly-formed collective of five vineyards aiming to place Surrey firmly on the map

Read more
Mon, 15:29

Erin Boag, the first lady of Strictly, came to the UK 23 years ago. She bought an A to Z, stuck a pin in the map and found Surbiton which she had heard about through the TV series, The Good Life. She still lives there, along with husband Peter O’Dowd and son Ewan

Read more
Mon, 11:52

This edition of Surrey Life features all the local ingredients to make this month special

Read more
Mon, 11:36

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend: art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Friday, September 21, 2018

We round up 10 of the most beautiful photos of Surrey shared on Instagram this week…

Read more
Thursday, September 20, 2018

Professional matchmaker Hayley Bystram discusses how to overcome the challenges of returning to dating in mid-life and later

Read more
Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Surrey is a beautiful, green and affluent county and I’ve certainly enjoyed living here the last 11 years. Towards the end of April 2018, Surrey Police released its latest crime statistics and we are still one of the safest counties in the country.

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

To much fanfare, Guildford has welcomed restaurant royalty to town but can the food live up to the spectacular castle view?

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

A choral singing boom is giving fresh meaning to the sound of music with new and traditional choirs pulling in more recruits than ever. Miriam Wakerly explores Surrey’s contingent

Read more
Monday, September 17, 2018

With beautiful countryside, stunning villages and plenty of bluebells during spring, Surrey is an amazing place for a stroll

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

A leading property agent is going back to his roots after a 32-year career by joining one of the UK’s foremost property search companies covering Hampshire, Surrey, West Sussex East Sussex and Kent.

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search