News / 21st February 2020

Belfast Music Society’s International Festival of Chamber Music 2020 is launched in LQ

The Linen Quarter BID launched Belfast Music Society’s International Festival of Chamber Music at its landmark Europa Hotel last night, where attendees heard an exclusive preview of what the Festival will have to offer.

This year’s programme includes rising stars from Europe, the Dudok Quartet Amsterdam; former BBC Young Musician, cellist Laura van der Heijden; renowned Venezuelan pianist Gabriela Montero; and an all-star trio of Adam Walker (principal flute, London Symphony Orchestra), Hélène Clément (viola, Doric Quartet) and Agnès Clément (harp, Brussels opera). The wide-ranging programme includes classical favourites Brahms, Haydn and Beethoven as well as quartet arrangements of Renaissance music, live improvisation, and a brand-new work by Irish composer Rhona Clarke.

This year, the harp steps into the spotlight, featuring in a chamber masterclass with Ulster Orchestra regular Tanya Houghton, two ‘Chamber Babies’ concerts for mums and babies (up to 18 months) in the Crescent Arts Centre, and the Festival closing concert.

The main concerts take place in the grand surroundings of Queen’s University’s Great Hall, while the annual student showcase recital and masterclass are based in the Harty Room, with its celebrated acoustic and beautiful beamed ceiling.

Chris McCracken, Managing Director at the Linen Quarter, which is supporting the festival said: “Last night the Linen Quarter BID launched the prestigious festival in style by hosting its launch event at Belfast’s landmark Europa Hotel. The launch event, the first of its kind for the Festival, included performances from pianist Conor Smyth-Small, harpist Grainne Meyer and Dudok Quartet Amsterdam. With a wealth of well-known international musicians and local talent, we look forward to a weekend of exceptional classical music like no other.”

Tickets for the festival itself range from £10 to £20, and there’s a great-value Festival Saver ticket at £65.

Full programme details can be found at, or at the Belfast Welcome Centre, 9 Donegall Square North, Belfast.

Presented in partnership with BBC Radio 3 and Queen’s University School of English, Arts and Languages. The Festival’s principal funder is Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

Festival at a Glance

21 Feb, 1.10 pm                                Student Showcase Recital, Harty Room, QUB

21 Feb, 7.30 pm                                Dudok Quartet, Great Hall, QUB

22 Feb, 10.30/11.30 am                  Chamber Babies, The Crescent

22 Feb, 1.30 pm                                Laura van der Heijden, Great Hall, QUB

22 Feb, 7.30 pm                                Gabriela Montero, Great Hall, QUB

23 Feb, 11.00 am                              Chamber Masterclass, Harty Room, QUB

23 Feb, 3.00 pm                                Walker/Clément/Clément, Great Hall, QUB

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