mini-residency at Music in Peebles - JANUARY 2018

"We certainly enjoyed your visit, which has been a real highlight of our season. The concert was fantastic and won over many who afterwards admitted to being dubious about whether they would enjoy it.  Words to the effect of “I didn't think it would be my cup of tea, but I loved it” were heard more than once! It’s always gratifying to see that so many are willing to give unfamiliar music a try and, given your wonderfully committed and idiomatic performances and enthusiastic and helpful introductions, they clearly felt that their gamble had paid off handsomely! Our audience reaction survey confirmed what the applause and foot-stamping had already demonstrated – that the audience loved it! All but a handful gave the concert 5 or 4 stars, with an overall rating of 4.5 – that is amazingly high for a concert without a single note of Beethoven, Bach or Mozart! 

"I must say that I was bowled over by your performances for the schools and the nursing home. It was clear that a lot of thought and preparation had gone into these sessions and the delivery just could not have been better. Every performance and workshop session was pitched at just the right level and presented in just the right way for the audience. The school pupils clearly got a lot out of it and, apart from their obvious enjoyment of the music, their eagerness to answer your questions, and the intelligence of their own questions, showed they were totally captivated. The nursing home residents also clearly loved every minute of their concert. Many of them have enjoyed listening to live music of various kinds in their younger days and miss it very much now that they are not able to get to concerts, so to have live music of such high quality brought to them means a great deal to them – something you could probably see written on their faces.  Not all musicians have the gift of being able to present music to a wide range of different audiences, but it is a gift that you obviously have, and Peebles was the fortunate beneficiary of it this week."

John Fox
President, Music in Peebles

"The only lunchtime concert at Budleigh Festival ever to receive a standing ovation."

Dorothy Ferrier, Budleigh Music Festival, 2017

Friday provided a feast of music from two contrasting string quartets: At lunchtime the astonishing Santiago Quartet gave us Latin American music (with fantastical instrumental flourishes!), while in the evening the hugely talented and successful Sacconi Quartet (with composer/pianist Huw Watkins) played Mozart, Dvorak and a work by Watkins himself. The joy of live music! 

Thank you for a very enjoyable festival. Among many excellent performances, the highlight for me was the Santiago Quartet..
— Audience member, Budleigh Music Festival


"The players engaged with the audience throughout the concert, offering context and explaining the unusual playing techniques that have to be employed. 

What was also very striking was the fantastic cohesion and unity that existed within the ensemble as the players reacted so brilliantly to each other." - Grayson Jones, Head of Music

What an incredible concert! Such a treat to hear the amazing sultry tones of the bandoneon in conjunction with the virtuoso string players. It was a stunning performance and has introduced me to sounds never heard before. Thank you!
— Rachel - Audience member, St. Mary's Guildford