FESTIVAL TREAT: Soloist Evie Brenkley
FESTIVAL TREAT: Soloist Evie Brenkley

THE Romaldkirk Music festival is to return this August bank holiday weekend with a busy schedule of performances.

Special guests this year are the Knights Family Ensemble and they will be joined by other musicians for the weekend.

Events begin on Friday, August 24, when Andrew Knights will visit the Manor House care home, in Barnard Castle, to lead a music and song workshop for residents living with alzheimer's to help unlock memories.

On Saturday, August 24, two events have been lined up.

At 2.30pm, in St Romald's Church, Charles and Jenny Knights will host a violin and strings band workshop, for violin and cello.

Those wishing to take part should be of a minimum grade four level. Four pieces of music will be covered in the workshop ranging from baroque and jazz to bluegrass.

This will be followed by a short performance at the end.

Those wishing to take part in the workshop should contact 01833 650096. Places are £10.

Those wishing to go along to observe and listen to the workshop are welcome to attend.

Then on Saturday night, Susannah Knights will be singing and performing with an oud.

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This takes place at Curlews book shop, in Market Place, Barnard Castle, at 7.30pm. There will be a set mezze-style buffet and tickets are £12. Contact Emma on 01833 630455.

The festival concludes on Sunday, August 26, with a performance by The Knights Family Ensemble and Friends at St Romald's Church.

The line-up includes Charles and Jenny Knights plus Caroline Davis on violin; James Sleigh on viola; cellist Sarah Hedley-Miller; Andrew Knights and Evie Brenkley on oboe; and festival organiser Martin Hall conducting from the harpsicord.

They will play a concert of baroque favourites, including pieces by Bach, Vivaldi, Boyce, Telemann, Albonini and Avison.

Tickets are £12.50, and include wine and nibbles. The show starts at 7.30pm. To book and for more information 01833 650096 or email suzy.graves@ btinternet.com.

Ms Graves, who is helping with preparations, said: “Martin started the festival three years ago and we have benefited from his experience and boundless enthusiasm.

“Some of you will know the Knights family. Mr Knights senior played the organ at St Romald’s and he and Sue have a very musical family.

“It is great news that Sarah can join us. She is a cellist in the BBC Symphony Orchestra and has played more than 300 times in the Proms at the Royal Albert Hall,” she added.

“Evie Brenkley, from Barnard Castle, has performed in the last two festivals as a soloist and as a virtuoso recorder player. This year she will be joining Andrew on oboe performing Albinoni’s Concerto for two oboes.”