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Simon Mayor and Hilary James

Simon-Major-&-Hilary-James

“A witty and captivating mix of folk, swing, blues and classical showstoppers” (said The Guardian) spiced with Simon Mayor’s unique brand of off-beat humour and Hilary’s “honey-dripping voice”.

There can’t be many performers who can slide easily from a beautifully evocative Irish ballad into a mandolin and guitar version of Handel’s Arrival of the Queen of Sheba and finish with everyone singing one of their own notoriously children’s comic songs (reminiscent of Hilaire Belloc and Flanders and Swan).

Simon and Hilary have also written satirical and topical songs for BBC news programmes including Newsnight. A huge fan of fellow Yorkshireman, the late, great Jake Thackray, Simon occasionally performs a special programme of Jake’s songs.

This talented duo have travelled the world from Vancouver to Singapore. Simon is one of the world’s leading mandolin virtuosos as well as a fine guitarist and fiddle player. He has had his own series on Radio 2 and an album in the Classic FM Top Ten chart, but his most thrilling moment was a journey through the square window on BBC’s Playschool!

Hilary James’ “elegant singing” (Daily Telegraph) easily crosses the great musical divides from Celtic ballads to blues and Berlioz. Her CDs have been played everywhere from Radio 1 to Latvia and Los Angeles. Described on BBC Radio 4 as “one of Britain’s finest voices” she is also famed for an unusual taste in bass instruments (she may turn up with her giant mandobass or slimline acoustic bass) and she might even manage a step-dance if the wind’s in the right direction.

‘Fantastic to go and see live. Do catch them if you can.’   BBC Radio 3

‘Sheer Musical Brilliance.’   BBC World Service

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