Beverley violin maker to open workshop to public during festival

We are pleased to announce that Beverley violin maker, Peter Hall, is joining in the New Paths festivities by opening his workshop to the public on Saturday 9th April. Members of the public will be given the special opportunity to see this craftsman at work.

Peter will be joined by his students from the Yorkshire Stringed Instrument Fellowship in Harrogate who will demonstrate the centuries old art of violin making. Festival artists will be giving short informal performances throughout the day at Peter’s studio.

Visit Peter Hall Violins on Norwood between 10am and 4pm to learn more about the craft of violin making and to enjoy some fun pop-up performances by festival artists.

Beverley Guardian: Minster packed out as concert raises £2,000

Great report of the Come & Sing Fauré Requiem in this week’s Beverley Guardian:

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Hull & East Riding Daily Mail: The best classical music in the most beautiful settings

Great preview of the Festival in the Hull & East Riding Daily Mail.

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Latest newsletter: The sap is rising…

Click here to view our most recent newsletter in its illustrated form.

Dear supporters,

The clocks ‘spring forward’ on Easter Day this year which means that the splendid stately homes of the East Riding of Yorkshire will be open by the time of the festival. Whether you’re a visitor or a local, make the most of the festival weekend with a springtime* visit to one or all of the three gems of the county – Burton Agnes Hall, Sledmere House, and Burton Constable – all on the doorstep of Beverley.

The festival includes some beautiful examples of the pastoral in music. In the opening concert we are treated to a performance by tenor Nick Pritchard of Beethoven’s joyous An die ferne Geliebte, full of imagery of love through nature, and generally recognised as the first ever song cycle (celebrating its 200th anniversary in April). At the coffee concert on Saturday we hear Schubert’s effervescent Shepherd on the Rock, in which soprano Mary Bevan is joined by clarinettist John Slack, as shepherd and echo converse across the valley.

If thoughts turn to romantic love in the spring then our incredible opera gala in the East Riding Theatre must not be missed. The evening includes one of the greatest 12-minute stretches in all music, the ultimate boy meets girl: the Act 1 finale of Puccini’s La Bohème. A cocktail of meetings and partings, the gala also features extracts from Don Giovanni, La Traviata, and Giulio Cesare. All of this is sung by phenomenally talented young superstars of the country’s opera stages. We’re thrilled to announce the full programme here.

The chamber music of the festival is similarly full of passion and romance. In the opening concert alone we hear two works with particularly beautiful slow movements. The melody of the Andante of Schumann’s great piano quartet is an exquisite love song between the instruments, and the slow movement of Brahms’ violin sonata in D minor offers a moment of sublime tenderness and peace in this otherwise tempestuous piece.

Katy Hamilton’s talk before this concert, “Of romance, role-models and … hedgehogs? Johannes Brahms meets the Schumanns”, will give an insight into the complex musical and personal relationships between the Schumanns and Brahms. Join us to learn more about the festival’s cornerstone composers from this distinguished Brahms scholar, over a glass of wine.

Remember to book your tickets now through the East Riding Theatre.

See you in one month’s time for a glorious spring* weekend of music-making!

With all best wishes,

Roland and Libby

* We can’t guarantee the weather!

Beverley Guardian

Thank you to the Beverley Guardian for running a feature on us this week!

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Latest newsletter: Next stop: April!

Click here to view our most recent newsletter in its illustrated form.

Dear supporters,

Our first event took place on Saturday and was a resounding success! 180 singers from around the region and far beyond gathered in Beverley Minster to spend the day rehearsing Fauré’s Requiem, under the baton of Ashley Grote. The Minster was packed for the performance and in total the day raised well over £2,000 for the Alan Spedding Memorial Fund, creating bursaries for talented teenagers to attend the life-changing summer schools of Oundle For Organists. The day was a wonderful memorial to Alan Spedding, and a great celebration of signing and song – an amazing launch for New Paths. Have a look at our picture montage here, which gives a sense of the incredible buzz of the day!

We now look forward with excitement to our main festival, in a little over a month. Having been captivated by Katherine Crompton and Edward Grint’s stunning song singing on Saturday, we know our audiences will be inspired to explore the concerts featuring song in April. Song has been enjoying a remarkable renaissance in the UK over the last decade, with festivals such as Oxford Lieder and Leeds Lieder flourishing. We are thrilled to be putting Beverley on that map, with such celebrated song singers as Anna Huntley and Marcus Farnsworth visiting the town. From the ravishing beauty of Schumann’s Dichterliebe, to the suave charm of Hahn and Fauré, the war-torn tragedy of Butterworth’s A Shropshire Lad to the radiance of Beethoven’s An die ferne Geliebte, song is a mainstay of New Paths.

We were also treated to the first-class organ playing of Tim Harper on Saturday, and this sets up the dazzling organ strand of the festival. Our full-page spread in the latest edition of Organists’ Review reveals the top quality of our organ events. Simon Johnson (Organist at St Paul’s Cathedral) and Richard Pinel (Assistant Organist at St George’s, Windsor Castle) will each be giving organ recitals on the Minster’s fine organ, and will be leading a showcase of the mighty Hull City Hall organ. They will be joined by three outstanding organ students all with connections to Beverley or the Alan Spedding Memorial Fund. This really will be an organ extravaganza.

Remember, the festival also contains children’s events, barbershop, opera, chamber music, compline, talks and masterclasses…. Have a browse through and book your tickets now from the East Riding Theatre.

It was a joy to meet so many of you on Saturday and we cannot wait for April.

With all best wishes,

Roland and Libby

Call for volunteers!

Would you like to help us make the inaugural New Paths festival a roaring success?

We need:

help distributing posters and brochures;
practical help with errands and front-of-house shifts during the festival;
private and corporate sponsorship for the festival.
Please email info@newpathsmusic.com if you can help.

Every little helps; you don’t need much time or resource available to make a significant impact!

Triumphant opening event: Come & Sing

Our opening event was a resounding success with a packed Minster, wonderful music-making, and a huge amount of money raised for the Alan Spedding Memorial Fund. Read more and enjoy pictures from the day here.

Latest newsletter: The countdown begins

Click here to view this newsletter in its illustrated form.

Dear supporters,

As the daffodils flower on the Westwood*, our thoughts turn to spring, and to the inaugural New Paths festival, now a little over six weeks away! A major new musical event in the East Riding of Yorkshire, the festival features a spectacular array of chamber music, song, organ music, opera, a capella, talks, children’s events, masterclasses for local young musicians, and a community programme taking music to those who are not normally able to hear it.

Click here to view our beautiful festival brochure.

Remember to book your tickets or passes through the East Riding Theatre box office.

Meanwhile, our first New Paths Music event is this week! Saturday will see over 150 singers gathering in Beverley Minster for an intensive day of singing under the baton of the inspirational Ashley Grote. This Come & Sing performance of Fauré’s Requiem is being held in memory of the late Alan Spedding MBE, a major musical figure both in the area and nationally. If you have signed up to sing, you will have received an email with details for the day.

Come and hear the results of the singers’ work at 5pm! Everyone is welcome, and entry is free. The performance will last just over an hour and will include a short set of solo items by our fabulous soloists, Katherine Crompton and Edward Grint. A day not to be missed!

We are tremendously excited about all that lies in the weeks ahead and look forward to seeing you in Beverley soon.

With all best wishes,

Libby and Roland

*For the ‘out-of-towners’ among you, the Westwood is a large open pasture overlooking Beverley, affording some fantastic views of the town. Perfect for a stretch of the legs between concerts!

Festival brochure available

Our festival brochure is available here. It gives full details of all events, venues and tickets, in a downloadable PDF form.

To receive a hard copy, please send us your postal address via the contact form, and we will pop one in the post.