Posted: Mon 17th Jun 2024

Two royal harpists heading to Llangollen for a ‘summer of string’! for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area

Two royal harpists are heading to Llangollen this summer to play in two festivals within days of each other.

Alis Huws will be playing at the Llangollen Eisteddfod and Catrin Finch – the Llangollen Fringe.

The two festivals are this year working together to promote all that the Denbighshire town has to offer.

Alis Huws, current Royal Harpist to King Charles III, will be joining folk superstars Calan and Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalists Johns’ Boys Chorus at the glittering Wales Welcomes the World concert on Wednesday 3 July as part of the 2024 Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod.

Six days later, on Tuesday 9 July, celebrated former Royal Harpist Catrin Finch will also be heading to the Welsh town to perform at Llangollen Town Hall as part of the Llangollen Fringe Festival, along with the Irish violinist Aoife Ní Bhriain.

Alis Huws is a soloist, orchestral and chamber musician. Alongside her royal role she regularly gives recitals across the UK and internationally, having toured Japan, Europe, the US, Hong Kong and the Middle East.

Last year Alis performed at His Majesty King Charles III’s coronation at Westminster Abbey, and has just signed a record deal with Decca Classics.

“I’m so looking forward to performing at Llangollen in July, especially getting to join Calan and Johns’ Boys on the stage. It should be a fun evening,” said Alis Huws.

Catrin Finch, the celebrated Welsh harpist, arranger and composer, performs in Llangollen six days after Alis.

Catrin is an internationally acclaimed musician and composer, and like Alis is one of the most accomplished harpists of her generation.

She was official harpist to the Prince of Wales from 2000 to 2004, and has been delighting audiences for over two decades.

Catrin has a reputation for collaborating with musicians from outside of the classical genre, such as the Dublin-born Aoife Ní Bhriain, who’s one of Ireland’s foremost traditional fiddle players and a classical violinist of international repute.

Their debut album, Double You, hit number one in the iTunes Classical Charts, and also topped the World Music Charts Europe in December 2023. Their show has been described as “spell-binding” and the duo say they can’t wait to bring it to Llangollen Town Hall in July.

This year the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod and the Llangollen Fringe Festival are presenting their biggest festivals ever.

Artistic director of the Llangollen Eisteddfod, Dave Danford, said: “To have one royal harpist in Llangollen is fantastic, but to have two in less than a week is amazing.

“Alis Huws has an amazing reputation, and is central to our ‘Wales Welcomes the World’ concert with folk superstars Calan and Britain’s Got Talent semi-finalists Johns’ Boys Chorus on Wedneday 3 July.”

Llangollen Fringe chair Paul Keddie said: “Catrin Finch has been one of our most requested artists, and we’re delighted to be bringing her to Llangollen this summer.

“Catrin is a Welsh icon and her album with Aoife Ní Bhriain is simply spellbinding.

“This year, the Fringe is really pleased to be working in tandem with the Eisteddfod to bring a month of tremendous artists to the town, including two royal harpists.”

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