World-class line-up of classical musicians

A world-class line-up of classical musicians – including one who performed at the Sussex’s Royal Wedding – has been announced for next year’s Harrogate International Sunday Series.

Hosted by Harrogate International Festivals and staged in the Old Swan Hotel, the Sunday Series “coffee concerts” have been an annual fixture on Harrogate’s classical music calendar since 1993.

The 2020 series opens at the beginning of February with German-born Swiss pianist, Andreas Haefliger. A “complete Beethovenian”, Haelfliger’s elegant programme celebrates Beethoven’s 250th-birthday with a Fantasia and Sonata, followed by Mussorgsky’s 10-movement musical work, inspired by a visit to an art exhibition!

The following week, the winner of the 2016 BBC Young Musician competition, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, makes his mark on the Sunday Series. The 20-year-old found worldwide fame when he played for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at their wedding. Sheku – whose debut recording, Inspiration, reached number one in the classical chart – will be joined by his sister, Isata, a brilliant pianist currently studying at the Royal Academy of Music.

On March 1, the series welcomes the Ashwell Trio, which consists of Callum Smart, also a pervious winner at the BBC Young Musicians competition; French Horn Player Ben Goldscheider, who appeared at the 2017 Harrogate Music Festival; and accomplished pianist, Richard Uttley, who is noted for his brilliant soloist work.

The Esmé Quartet, a string quartet formed of four young Korean women, take to the stage on March 15. Formed three years ago in Cologne, Germany, the quartet have already dominated the international stage, winning first prize and four special prizes at the prestigious London Wigmore Hall String Quartet International Competition, in April 2018.

Bringing the 2020 series to a triumphant close on Sunday, April 5, is pianist Joseph Moog. The son of two classical musicians, Joseph – a double winner at the International Classic Musical Awards – will conclude his performance with Ravel’s suite of piano pieces, which are based on poems from the collection of Gaspard de la Nuit.

Charlotte Woods, Harrogate International Festivals Music and Education Manager said: “We are absolutely delighted to announce the performers for the 2020 Harrogate International Sunday Series, which has a distinctly international flavour, and is one of the most exciting line-ups to date.

“We are incredibly lucky to have these musicians, who play at venues all over the world, appearing with us in Harrogate. Whilst the concerts will be unique in their own way, they have one thing in common – each and every performer is a brilliant musician.

“One of the aims of Harrogate International Festivals is to introduce classical music to new audiences, and we believe the names we are bringing to Harrogate line-up will appeal to a wide range of music lovers, including young people, and those who may never have set foot in a classical music concert before.”

For further information about the Harrogate International Sunday Series 2020, and to book tickets, please visit the Harrogate International Festivals website