‘Make mine a Betty’s tea and a Fat Rascal scone’ – What the Albion Quartet is looking forward to when it plays Harrogate

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Continuing its popular Sunday Series, Harrogate International Festivals present The Albion Quartet on at the Old Swan Hotel on March 18.

Forged with the creative force of friendship and fuelled by the awe-inspiring nature of the string quartet repertoire, the Albions play an impressive quartet of instruments, including a Stradivarius and Guarnerius.

When asked what their most valued material possessions are, cellist Nathanial Boyd said: “We shan’t disappoint; it has to be our instruments. They’re our companions.”

The British classical string quartet consists of Tamsin Waley-Cohen, Emma Parker, Rosalind Ventris and Nathaniel Boyd.

The Quartet feels a particular affinity to the chamber music of Antonín Dvořák and their debut recordings of Dvořák’s Quartets will also be released this year, on Signum Records.

Nathaniel said: “We’re bringing a wonderful programme to Harrogate including a little heard but fantastically exciting Dvorak quartet.

“There’s also a heart wrenching short piece by Suk and one of our favourite Haydn’s: The Emperor.”

He promises an emotional experience.

“We put a lot of emotion into our playing. It’s an expressive medium and if you feel emotions you’ll likely take something from it.

“We certainly don’t hold back. We would love for people to come and experience it no matter what their prior experience, it couldn’t matter less. Give it a go and a whole new world could open up.”

Viola player Rosalind agrees: “You’ll be part of something new and exciting that we’re creating on stage.”

She has never been to Harrogate, although has wanted to visit for a long time as her mum grew up in North Yorkshire.

“I’m hoping I’ll have a chance to go to Bettys after just reading Robert Galbraith’s last Strike novel, I really want to try the Betty’s Blend tea and Fat Rascal scone.”

Tickets: 01423 562 303.