Welcome return to Ropery Hall for Russell and Algar
Two time BBC Folk Award winners Greg Russell and Ciaran Algar make a welcome return to Ropery Hall at the end of the month.
Previously the much acclaimed duo had featured in the Young Folk Showcase gig at Ropery Hall at the beginning of 2014.
“I’m delighted to welcome Russell and Algar back to Barton and I am sure that all those who saw them play here just over two years ago will be able to see just how much this duo has progressed,” said Mick Harding of Mad Dog Folk.
Russell and Agar, who met in 2011, were soon signed to Fellside Records and in July 2012 released their debut album, The Queen’s Lover and in the numerous tours that followed the duo developed and honed their stage craft, becoming one of the most sought after young acts on the English Folk Scene.
In January 2013, the pair picked up the BBC Radio 2 Young Folk award. Following the award win they toured the country in April and, after completing school and University Exams in May, began touring again at the beginning of June – a schedule which saw them play venues and festivals such as Cambridge Folk Festival and Fairport’s Cropredy Convention as well as appearing live on Mark Radcliffe’s BBC Radio 2 Folk Show.
After recording their second album, again with Fellside, Russell and Algar received the Horizon Award for Best Breakthrough Act at the 2014 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. This second album, The Call, was then released in July 2014 to a host of brilliant reviews.
“It’s also no surprise to learn that both come from musical families, but while regularly mixing with the folk club and festival circuit from a young age may be the bedrock, both have clearly made the most of opportunities to build on those foundations,” Mick continued
Both are multi-instrumentalists, with Ciaran in particular an All-Ireland and All-Britain champion fiddle player on several occasions. In the meantime, while his musical partner was taking on all comers in fiddle championships, Greg was out learning his trade performing support slots for the likes of Lau and Karine Polwart
Greg’s superb guitar is a perfect match for Ciaran’s fiddle and he also plays bouzouki and English concertina. Then there’s Greg’s voice – expressive, confident, but with a fetching tremor and a gift for finding the emotional weight of a song – his singing catapults this to a whole new level as he’s one of the best singers on the current scene.
Tickets to see Russell and Algar, who will be bringing the first half of the 2016 programme to a close on Saturday, May 28, cost £13 in advance or £15 on the door. They can be bought online at www.roperyhall.co.uk in person at the Craft Gallery or by calling 01652 660380.