Feedback from a mini-residency at Music in Peebles

"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


Rehearsing with Salisbury Community Choir for A concert at OXFORD Sheldonian

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I think this is all SO exciting! It’s going to be a blast!
The choir was blown away by you! And I was thrilled by how it sounded. I hope you enjoyed it as much!
— Jeremy Backhouse, Director SCC
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"The only lunchtime concert at Budleigh Festival ever to receive a standing ovation."

Dorothy Ferrier, Budleigh Music Festival

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 - amazing performance.
— Audience member, Budleigh Music Festival, forwarded by Nicky Marshall

Concert at GHS

Words from Grayson Jones, Head of Music, about the Quartet's didactic concert for music students in Guildford:

Fresh from last week’s studio sessions and a live performance on Classic FM, the Santiago Quartet - augmented by the bandonean player Julian Rowlands - visited Guildford High School on 27 February to perform some of the repertoire that they are recording this month for their second CD album. 

The concert, which was open to anyone in the school community, included lots of South American music and, in particular  Argentine Tangos: Many of the Year 11 GCSE Music girls found these pieces particularly fascinating as they are currently composing tangos for their coursework compositions this term.  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, and was remarked upon afterwards by the Sixth Form musicians, was the fantastic cohesion and unity that existed within the ensemble as the players reacted so brilliantly to each other. 

With Julian Rowlands at Guildford High School

With Julian Rowlands at Guildford High School

Immersed in the Four Seasons - photos courtesy of GHS

Immersed in the Four Seasons - photos courtesy of GHS


Concert for Oakleaf

Santiago Quartet delivered an amazing concert in aid of Oakleaf which was enjoyed by all on Saturday, 25th February 2017 at St Catherine’s School, Bramley.

There was a mixture of British contemporary and Latin American music. The new arrangement of Eric Clapton’s Tears in Heaven took the audience's breath away as did the arrangement of the Four Seasons . All of the music played will be featured on Santiago Quartet's second album " Language of the Heart", which is now available for pre-order and will be released in October.

Oakleaf are extremely thankful to Santiago Quartet for choosing to partner with us for this event. Jonny Hennessy-Brown (Cellist and Founder of Quartet), openly spoke about the realities of living with mental health issues on the evening. Jonny commented, “I feel it my duty to pass on to others that they can talk about their mental health issues publicly or privately as part of their own recovery process. I am immensely grateful to Oakleaf for the support they provide to a family member who has not been as fortunate as myself ".

We are also very grateful to our sponsor RHW Solicitors for helping make this event a huge success and as a result we have raised just over £1100.00 .  This money will allow us to continue offering vital support to people living with mental health issues in the community .

Oakleaf's Deepti Parmar with two of the Quartet's stalwart supporters - Jonny's parents

Oakleaf's Deepti Parmar with two of the Quartet's stalwart supporters - Jonny's parents

Members of the local Tango dancing club enjoying the concert!

Members of the local Tango dancing club enjoying the concert!


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

Enjoying the fantastic concert hall at St. Catherine's

Enjoying the fantastic concert hall at St. Catherine's

All photos courtesy of Deepti Parmar, Oakleaf

All photos courtesy of Deepti Parmar, Oakleaf