Discover classical at the New Paths Music Festival

Published: Wednesday 19th April 2017 by Rich Sutherland

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New Paths Music Festival returns to Beverley for its second year. We spoke to organisers Roland Deller and Libby Burgess to find out more.

“It’s a privilege to be the founder of such a great festival,” enthuses Roland Deller, a Beverley-born Minster chorister.

“We cannot wait to welcome forty of the UK’s most exciting young professional musicians to Beverley for a long weekend.”

This year there are four days of fantastic music events to enjoy across the historic market town.

Running from Thursday until Sunday this week, the festival takes place in several venues. St. Mary’s Church, Beverley Minster and East Riding Theatre are amongst those that will be filled with beautiful vocals and sounds.

“We’ve got a brand new group playing Baroque music, and Claire Booth, a soprano from East Yorkshire,” explains, Libby Burgess, Artistic Director of the festival.

“Violinist Fenella Humphreys, who played with me in Hull earlier this year, will also be performing.”

“Some of the artists who attended the festival in 2016 will be joining us again too. For example, Jamie Campbell the violinist, cello player Cara Berridge, and John Slack, who plays the clarinet.”

Libby herself will be playing piano during many of the concerts.

“We also have a huge community singing event open to all in Beverley Minster on Saturday,” Roland points out.

“It will be led by one of the country’s most dynamic choral directors.”

Meanwhile, over at East Riding Theatre, there will be a late-night event involving drinks and jazz.

Variety is key when it comes to New Paths. With a range of performers, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. On top of this, the festival is striving to inspire young musicians with their family-friendly shows.

“We really want to get involved in the community,” continues Libby. “We have concerts specifically aimed at children, we’re performing in a nursing home, and we have a range of free pop-up concerts around the town as well.”

Roland tells us that some of the most popular events last year were the free family concerts:

“We’re delighted that once again these events are heavily over-subscribed. Many young families will get the opportunity to hear classical concerts given by leading professional musicians.”

Both Libby and Roland are keen to attract new audiences and spread their passion for classical music with as many people as possible:

“You don’t have to know anything about classical composers to enjoy New Paths,” Libby maintains.

“We’re really welcoming and open. Last year, we had quite a lot of people in our audiences that had never been to a classical concert before. They told us that they loved it.”

Roland also explains that this festival is different than what you first may think:

“New Paths is a vibrant, ‘unstuffy’ event. It’s packed with concerts, community activity and sparkling music-making for all the family.”

New Paths is dedicated to the memory of the late Alan Spedding:

“For many years, he was the organist and Director of Music at Beverley Minster,” Roland tells us.

“I think that he would have been very proud to see the town playing host to one of the most important new classical music festivals in the country.”

The New Paths Music Festival takes place in Beverley from Thursday 20 until Sunday 23 April. For more information and to book tickets, please visit

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Published: Wednesday 19th April 2017 by Rich Sutherland

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