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Hayley’s tour diary, pt 2

Thu Jul 28 2016

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Ann & Peter Law OAE Experience Scheme bassoonist Hayley Pullen writes about her adventures at the Ryedale Festival in Yorkshire.

Read part one.


Saturday 16th July

The four of us staying with our host Jean went for a morning walk near Boltby where we saw just how beautiful our surroundings were. We climbed over stiles and stone walls, walked through fields and woods and saw plenty of sheep whilst discussing music, politics and our various backgrounds (how often do you get an American, a Hungarian, an Israeli and a Brit talking about the ethics of eating meat?). We had lunch in Jean’s garden overlooking the hills with stunning views.

5 Garden lunch

That evening we met for a quick warm up and did our first sold out performance of Alcina. It went very well. There was a Glyndebourne-style picnic interval where we caught the gorgeous setting sunlight.

6 Dusk

After the show we all went to the pub to celebrate a triumphant first performance. It was great to meet the singers properly over a few pints. The string players got quite nerdy and I actually caught them examining loose gut strings as last orders were being called.

7 Pub strings

Sunday 17th July

Our day off! Some of our group went to the seaside, some visited Castle Howard, and the four of us in Boltby went for another long walk with incredible views of the area and moors. Jean met us half way and while we took a rest, she recited a story in a very broad Yorkshire accent. I think Oliver got most of it, but the rest of us foreigners were totally lost!

10 Jean at the top

That evening we went to Sledmere House where we listened to Rachel Podger and Kristian Bezuidenhout play Mozart violin sonatas. We toured the amazing stately home and drank prosecco outside in the estate’s grounds.

11 Sledmere grounds

Monday 18th July

Jean bought all the necessities for a BBQ which we enjoyed in the bright sunshine in her garden. We all talked for hours about family, life, death and reflected on what a wonderful time we had and how lucky we were to have such a welcoming, supportive and encouraging host. We did our last show that evening (even better than the first, despite the very hot theatre!), and went to pub.


The Ann & Peter Law OAE Experience Scheme is currently open for applications for 2017 (deadline 2 September 2016). Click here to download the information pack.

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