I was on holiday in the Lake District twelve years ago, and there chanced upon a concert given by music students. The Heath Quartet were among them just playing a movement from a Haydn string quartet, and I was so impressed I followed it up with an unscheduled and highly enthusiastic review.
Now established as one of Europe’s most highly regarded groups, they feature in next year’s Harrogate International Festival Sunday Series in the Old Swan Hotel on March 11.
Their programme will include Haydn’s Fifth, Mozart’s Sixteenth and Bartok’s First quartets, together with Webern’s Six Bagatallen.
Doyen of the keyboard Martin Roscoe opens the series with Beethoven, Chopin and four popular French composers – Ravel, Poulenc, Faure and Debussy (January 15).
In 2008 Francesca Dego was the youngest winner of Italy’s prestigious ‘Paganini Competition’, and has since toured the world performing in the most celebrated venues.
Playing one of her two famous Italian violins by Ruggeri and Guarneri, she includes the most challenging virtuoso showpiece in the repertoire with Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Concert-Rhapsody on themes from Rossini’s Barber of Seville (January 29).
The clarinettist, Julian Bliss (February 19), and Leeds International Piano Competition prizewinner, Alessanda Taverna (April 30), complete the series.
Harrogate Festival Sunday Series, Old Swan Hotel, January 15 – April 30, 11am. Tickets from 01423 562303.