One of our favourite places to go is the Upper House in Barlaston, and we were very fortunate to visit there a few days ago for a beautiful wedding which took place outside on the patio and under the pagoda. The weather was just perfect and the gardens, plants and flowers were at their best for the happy couple and all their guests.
We played for the ceremony and the reception before the wedding breakfast took place and we played outside, serenading and being accompanied by shrill birdsong.
The views over Staffordshire are stunning at the Upper House. It was built for Wedgewood's grandson and has been lovingly restored and decorated to a high standard throughout. However, I have not stayed there overnight so I cannot comment on the rooms but as it is a very popular wedding venue I am sure they would be wonderful.
Every time we visit we are always greeting with a welcoming smile and are looked after so kindly by the wonderful staff there. This of course, makes us keep coming back and visiting time and time again.
After our performance we adjourned to the drawing room, drank tea and had cake. Well, we had worked very hard indeed and we were at the Upper House, so why not?
It's so good to be posting again and here we are on the 3rd Floor, The Potters Club in Federation House opposite Stoke Station in Stoke-on-Trent. Its a fabulous venue for weddings and we congratulate our bride and groom Karen and Kenn and wish them many years of happiness together.
My thanks goes to Kate Spiers (seen on the left) who saved the day for me when my music folder decided to close on me as I was mid-flow the Vivaldi's Four Seasons. It was a tricky moment and I could not stop playing to sort the music, so I was very grateful to my wonderful second violinist (who has just joined the team) as she sorted my folder during counting her bars of rest. We are very versatile you know.
Catherine Porter joined us on Viola and played beautifully. The viola features quite a few times during the pieces and she played her solos with great projection and feeling. She is a very valued member of the team and we are delighted to have her.
Lastly I would like to mention our newly appointed cellist who stepped up to the mark and contributed with some beautiful cello playing. All in all it was a fabulous occasion and we were delighted when the Bride and Groom sent us this.
Words can’t do justice to how brilliant you were at our wedding.
Our guests and ourselves were so very happy and overjoyed to hear you play .
Simply wonderful and the gold jackets were awesome you were all absolutely outstanding and divine !
We would 100% recommend you .
Heart felt thanks to you .
Kenn and Karen
Thank you Kenn and Karen very much for having us play for you and we hope you have a wonderful honeymoon in Vienna.
Here we are at Sarah's home rehearsing and playing the Dvorak string quartet no.12 "American". We love getting together and making music. That is what it is all about. Sarah baked some scones, Dave's favourite. We always look forward to playing and getting together and we always make rehearsal days enjoyable and fun. Well why not? It is a chance to bake some bread, do some homemade soup and share some jokes. Dave is very good at telling jokes and they are very funny so if you get the chance to meet him watch out. He might tell you a few!
Thank you Sean and Emma for your beautiful card which arrived yesterday and dropped through our door as we were in the middle of a rehearsal. It really made our day and thank you for having us play on your special day. xxx All the very best from Quartet Cabaret xxx
And thank you too for inviting us to play for your special day... and thank you for your thank you card which has really made our day too!!! Our very best wishes to you both and congratulations Mr and Mrs Taylor!! Yay!!
And don't we look smart! Here we are ready to play at the gorgeous Crabwall Manor and Spar @crabwallmanorandspa in Chester. It is a super venue and the conservatory all dressed up was breathtaking and very beautiful. Also at the venue and helping to create the beautiful backdrop were Pieces and Posies. Their contribution to the day made it also very special as all the pieces were very delicate and pretty. Check out their website on www.piecesandposies.co.uk
Yes, Sarah is very happy to have found a new love in her life. It happens to be a beautiful violin bow made by the maker Ludwig Bausch, a German bow maker who became known as the "German Tourte", named after Francois Tourte who was considered to be the most important figure in the development of the modern bow. Francois Tourte has been called the Stradivari of the bow and so to be known as the "German Tourte" is a great thing, it means that his bows are exceptional and indeed this one certainly is. She was drawn to this bow by its resonance. Yes bows do really alter and effect the tone quality of the violin! They are really more important than the violin itself! It is made of pernambuco, silver mounted with a shiny tortoiseshell frog which has an extra band of silver on the inside. It is also fairly light and does everything asked of it including up-bow staccato and ricochet. It is a delight to use as it feels like an extension to Sarah's right arm. She says, "I will very much look forward to using it for years to come."
More about our instruments in forthcoming blogs... We will keep you posted!
Here we are playing in the beautiful and famous Hall of Pillars in Crewe Hall, Cheshire. Crewe Hall was built by Sir Ranulph Crewe between 1616 and 1636 and it was the first brick building to be built in the North of England. Built during the reign of James I it boasts opulence and wealth. The great Hall of Pillars is surrounded by increadble oak carvings and a beautiful marble floor with a Jacobean staircase going up two floors. The acoustics are perfect for a string quartet and our dulcet tones wafted among the wedding guests who were enjoying canape's and champagne by the open fire.
It was a real pleasure to play in the Hall of Pillars and an honour to have been invited. We hope we will get the chance to play there again soon.
Our lovely Tessa who plays 2nd violin in our quartet has now achieved a high merit for her diploma on the violin. Well done Tessa! We knew you could do it as you are so talented and work really hard.
Its so wonderful to hear from our happy couples once they're married and here is a fabulous card from Mr and Mrs Swindell. Thank you for your thank you card and we wish you all the very best.