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6 May: Tony McManus and Julia Toaspern
Hailed by the late John Renbourn as ‘the best Celtic guitarist in the world’, Tony McManus has been listed as one of 50 transcendental guitarists of all time by Guitar Player Magazine.
Julia Toaspern, from Berlin, combines classical violin and voice training with an interest in jazz, baroque and traditional music. She has released two albums of original songs and performed both as a classical player and as a singer/songwriter on both sides of the Atlantic. Her skills as a guitarist are prodigious and make a very exciting fit with Tony’s work.
The duo’s guitar treatments of traditional music is unique exploring the harmonic possibilities of these old, and sometimes not so old, tunes. Flat-picking or finger-picking at the highest level they are always at the service of the music rather than simply displaying technical prowess – although that is very evident as well. Julia’s violin effortlessly morphs into a fiddle as she weaves from Italian madrigal to Scottish reel. Julia’s songs go to the heart of love and loss, hope and survival and are infused with a musical input from wide and eclectic experience of musical life.
Tony’s music is beyond beautiful, it’s perfect” – Tommy Emmanuel.
“Julia’s bell-like voice and her fiddle playing are thrilling. She moves effortlessly from fiddle to guitar, her solo is impressive.” – Salon Festival, France.