Divertimento String Quartet is highly acclaimed for their performances and have a large following for their regular concerts. They perform three different programmes a year, with a wide range of works from Haydn and Mozart to Walton and Shostakovich. The Quartet also gives concerts with a mixture of styles from classical to light classics.
You can listen to the Quartet on Divertimento String Quartet Repertoire page.
Mary Eade – Violin
Lindsay Braga – Violin
Andrew Gillett – Viola
Vicky Evans – Cello
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Mendelssohn’s String Octet is a most alluring, tuneful work – and a phenomenal achievement from a teenage composer. But it takes imagination to devise a whole programme using the eight strings it requires. The Divertimento and Eberle Quartets found an ingenious solution: first, Telemann’s Viola Concerto, contrasting paired upper strings with the soloist, and a versatile cellist taking on keyboard continuo. St. Margaret’s Church in Topsham has a warm but absorbent acoustic, so Andrew Gillett chose a restrained and thoughtful approach. There was plenty of fire in the stunning last movement though, with its chains of stirring off-beats.
Violist then took over keyboard, for Bach’s two-violin concerto, BWV 1043 – the outer movements at a breathtakingly courageous pace, yet never losing a secure sense of ‘two-in-a-bar’ – a thrilling experience. The gloriously lyrical slow movement had a wonderful timeless quality as it was gently woven between the matched yet distinctively-voiced violin soloists.
The Mendelssohn Octet is a tremendous challenge. With eight strings at his disposal, Mendelssohn writes dense and complex textures. This splendid performance was striking for its clarity, its balance, and the control of the music taken to the very edge. It delighted a packed Sunday afternoon audience.George Pratt
We have no difficulty in singing the praises of the Divertimento String Quartet! Indeed, the Topsham Chamber Music Society was established in 2014 with the express purpose of allowing concert-goers in East Devon the chance to enjoy the very special talents of these four superb musicians. If you are looking for a professional ensemble who will play tenderly, strongly, wittily, dramatically or mellifluously as occasion demands, look no further. Their repertoire is extensive and they are always interested in working on new pieces. As individuals, the members of the quartet relate very well to our audiences, creating a friendly atmosphere and bringing the pieces in their programme to life with excellent explanatory introductions.The Topsham Chamber Music Society
What an experience we had on Saturday night at Sharpham House. And what a challenging programme. The sound was so spectacular I nearly fell off my chair with the opening notes of the Mozart. We had an opportunity to experience the intimacy of sound in a chamber music setting and it was overwhelmingly wonderful. I was completely overawed at the dexterity and musicianship of the members of the quartet, especially in the Greig.Dorothy West
Quite simply it was great!Raymond Hayes
“We loved the latest Divertimento concert, particularly the piece by Stravinsky; short, humourous and with many surprises, played with such evident enjoyment. I can hardly believe it was written a hundred years ago, it sounded so fresh.”Jennie Crickmay
Thank you for providing such a varied programme. We liked the two Shostakovich pieces very much – quite a find, as one so often hears so much angst in his work. Good fun! Nice to hear the Wolf as well after a gap of many years. My favourite was definitely the Brahms which I thought you played beautifully: the quartet seemed to merge to form one organism, and there was one passage for the cello which was truly beautiful and moving.Ruth Oatey