Sir Tony Robinson headlines Northern Aldborough Festival line-up
Last updated Feb 16, 2024
Alim Beisembayev, Sir Tony Robinson and Viktoria Mullova are all set to perform at this years festival

The 2024 line-up for the Northern Aldborough Festival has been announced.

Sir Tony Robinson, who played Baldrick in Blackadder, Leeds Piano Competition winner Alim Beisembayev, and one of the world’s great violin virtuosos, Viktoria Mullova, are some of the headline acts for June 2024.

The festival gives audiences the chance to experience major stars normally seen in cities at an intimate rural village setting, just outside Boroughbridge.

Opera singers, acclaimed pianists, and jazz ensembles mingle amongst the village’s Roman history, including a prized collection of Roman artefacts and mosaics.

Festival director Robert Ogden said:

“Each year we invite a headline speaker. It’s fitting Sir Tony Robinson is this year’s guest, given the setting of our festival and its rich historic and archaeological significance. It promises to be a very special evening.”

The festival’s mission is to bring a high-end live music to its rural location, making the sleepy village that was once a prosperous Roman capital, an unlikely epicentre for classical music; 2024 marks its 30th anniversary.

This year’s music programme focuses on championing young classical talent.

The opening night sees 25-year-old Tom Fetherstonehaugh conducting Fantasia Orchestra, which comprises some of the UK’s most exciting young musicians, alongside pianist Alim Beisembayev, who at 23 won the last Leeds Piano Competition, performing Tchaikovsky and Chopin.

Fantasia Orchestra. Credit: Frank Noon

Other highlights include Armonico Consort with a semi-staged production of Purcell’s The Fairy-Queen, and the rising star of classical guitar, hailed as a ‘poet’ of the instrument, Jack Hancher.

The festival also welcomes the award-winning comedian with an opera degree, Amy Webber and leading British jazz pianist Julian Joseph, hailed as one of Duke Ellington’s ‘natural-born heirs’, who performs with his trio.

Pan-flute player Adriana Babin, who at just 22 is already a star in her home country of Moldova, will perform, as will the Canadian saxophonist and Spanish accordionist Mikeleiz-Zucchi Duo.

There’s also the return of the New Voices Singing Competition, which searches for new vocal talent and has £7,000 of prizes.

Comedian Amy Webber

Mr Ogden, who began his career as a counter tenor, launched the competition last year in response to funding cuts in the classical music sector.

He said:

“We’ve got some world-class musicians once more in Aldborough. It doesn’t matter if you are an aficionado of classical music, or you’re a complete novice, we hope audiences will come and experience these very special performances. The rewards of a live concert are so huge.”

The Last Night Outdoor Concert sees the UK’s biggest Queen tribute band, Majesty, perform to around 1,000 festival-goers in the grounds of Aldborough Manor. Audiences are invited to bring a picnic and dance the night away, ending with an orchestrated firework display.

Mikeleiz-Zucchi Duo

Tickets for the festival, which takes place 13-22 June in the north Yorkshire village, go on sale this spring.

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