Magic Violin String Trio
violin/vocals – guitar – cello
a line-up and a repertoire, which features 'all the good and all the bad’ that string players can utilise'.
In a story told through music, The Magic Violin String Trio transport the listener through countries and cultures performing Eastern European and Balkan folk and Gypsy music. Influenced by musical traditions of old, the trio of strings and singer bring a fresh and charismatic feel to their performances.
The Magic Violin String Trio comprises of Gundula on lead vocals and violin, Jeremy Halliwell on guitar, and Fraser Perry on cello and backing vocals. They evolved in 2020 from the string players of Gundula’s 5-piece Balkan ensemble Tatcho Drom, when Covid-19 restrictions meant only three players could fit in the rehearsal space.
As with all musical arrangement Gundula has ever crafted, she uses each instruments in its full capacity in regards to their dynamics, playing techniques, sound variety and colour. For this string line-up with vocals, she took a lot of inspiration from old types of ensembles, ones that can be found in many rural Balkan regions. Those use ancient and local string instruments such as tambura, oud, balalaika, brac and various types of fiddles. When arranging music for the trio, Gundula takes pieces she has learnt from native Romany Balkan players. Her aim is to write fresh arrangements that preserve the old archaic beauty and magic of the traditional music.
The Magic Violin Trio isn’t bound by genre; they bring their deft approach to a breadth of musical styles. Anything goes that contains magic and their repertoire consists of not only Balkan/Eastern European but also pieces from Silk Road regions and Ottoman times, Nordic folk, klezmer and old-fashioned jazz tunes.
The Magic Violin String Trio have had the pleasure of playing many different kinds of venue; from concerts at large conference centres and churches to more modest studio theatres, art cafes and dinner receptions, their unique, intimate sound is perfectly suited to any sophisticated setting. Amongst their roster of current projects is a collaboration with Storyteller Sally Pomme Clayton, and a musical journey along the Danube all the way from Germany to the Black Sea: ‘Music from Danube Regions with a Drop of Ottoman’.