Altrincham’s Stamford Quarter to play host to award-winning poet and string quartet in free gig

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Altrincham is set to host one of the North’s ‘most powerful poetic voices’ and an award-winning string quartet at the recently launched community social hub “Not So Secret Garden”.

Mike Garry and his Cassia String Quartet will be performing a combination of classical quartet music set against some of Mike’s critically acclaimed poetry.

Mike Garry performing with the Cassia String Quartet

The outdoor performance, on Friday July 23 at 7:30pm, will be free and will take place ahead of the release of the group’s new album, which is out in the autumn.

Mike Garry has worked with artists including John Cooper Clarke and Iggy Pop, but his collaboration with the Cassia String Quartet earned him a number one single in the UK charts with their ‘Ode To Saint Anthony’.

The tribute to Anthony Wilson has become a beloved eulogy to one of Manchester’s most important musical figures and raised money for The Christie Hospital.

You can watch the video to Saint Anthony here:

Altrincham’s Not So Secret Garden in Stamford Square

Mike’s collaborators, the Cassia String Quartet, are an award-winning group of musicians from the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. They formed more than 10 years ago and have won numerous prestigious awards since.

They were recipients of the 2013 Musiciens Entre Guerre et Paix Award from the International Académie Ravel, finalists in the Trinity Laban Intercollegiate Competition and winners of the 2013 Nossek String Quartet Prize. They have also worked alongside Mike with New Order plus The Charlatans and Daughter.

The Friday evening performance will be taking place in Altrincham’s Not so Secret Garden, a sustainable green suburban oasis in the heart of the Stamford Quarter. The area offers cover, suitable for all weathers and alfresco seating created from sustainable materials, centred around a solar-powered pergola with festoon lighting and a lush flower wall.

The space has completely transformed this previously under-used part of Altrincham town centre and provides a new green public space for shoppers, families and visitors to enjoy.

Stutter and Twitch will be serving drinks and food from their new bar and converted caravan alongside popup food and drink traders.

Mike will also be offering a free poetry workshop for 13 to 19-year-olds

Mike Garry will also be at “Not So Secret Garden” on Saturday July 24 to host an afternoon workshop for young people aged between 13 and 19 entitled “Taking the Pi**: The Power of Figurative Speech”. It will be a two-hour workshop looking at the power of figurative speech. Spaces will be limited to 20 and you can book a space and find out more info by emailing:

Mike Garry said: “Altrincham has certainly changed a lot in recent years and the Not So Secret Garden is a great initiative to bring the community together for free performances. Giving people access to the arts in these sorts of environments is great.

“My workshop on the Saturday is open to young people, aged 13-19 as this group is often forgotten at bigger festivals, with just stuff for the younger kids.  I want to show them just how powerful and emotive words can be.”

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