ORGANISERS of Ryedale Festival have announced an online programme of musical as the event goes virtual for the first time.

The festival, which has been postponed due to coronavirus, is organising eight free-to-view concerts, which will be broadcast daily from July 19 to 26.

Locations in Ryedale include Castle Howard, All Saints’ Church in Helmsley, and St Michael’s Church in Coxwold.

The festival will feature leading musicians, including pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason, Yorkshire-born soprano Rowan Pierce, organist Anna Lapwood, cellist Abel Selaocoe and violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen among others.

“Our new online platform is there to throw open the doors of the Ryedale Festival this summer,” said Christopher Glynn, artistic director for the Ryedale Festival.

“It’s there to share the joy of classical music with more people than ever.

“It’s there to support musicians at a time when they have never needed it more.

“We all miss the feeling of community that is only ever fully present when people gather in a room and fill it with a sense of anticipation.

“It’s an alchemy we will value all the more when normal life is restored.”

Pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason will open the festival with an afternoon recital of Beethoven and classics from the American piano repertoire.

Then, pianist and artistic director Christopher Glynn and singer Rowan Pierce will perform a mixture of traditional songs.

Cellist Abel Selaocoe will present a concert drawn from the music and stories of his native South Africa, at All Saints’ Church, in Helmsley.

The Albion Quartet will close the festival by performing the Rosamunde Quartet, by Franz Schubert, in the Great Hall of Castle Howard.

“Every year, the Ryedale Festival welcomes outstanding performers from all over the world, both established and emerging,” added Christopher.

“The festival enjoys a large, loyal and enthusiastic audience, the warm support of the local community and a reputation as one of the most exciting and enterprising in the country.

“Now the festival can increase its reach beyond Yorkshire, with the livestream available internationally.

“All concerts will be accessible for at least three weeks, so that audiences who can’t join the festival can watch later.

“But in the meantime, we hope this online festival will bring pleasure to music-lovers everywhere.”

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