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Simon Mayor & Hilary James

Simon Mayor & Hilary James

‘Just fantastic to go and see live. Do catch them if you can.'

BBC Radio 3

‘ 'Remarkable and entertaining with it.' ****

The Scotsman

Duo - Vocal & Instrumental


  • Simon Mayor - Mandolin/Mandola/Mandocello/Fiddle/Guitar
  • Hilary James - Voice/Mandobass/Guitar


A superbly entertaining mix of instrumental music, song, poetry and humorous anecdotes in a show that ranges from movingly evocative to hilarious.

World class mandolin, elegant vocals, guitar and fiddle wizardry...anything from a Vivaldi concerto to a tango, folksong, 1930s swing or French Chanson...and of course one or two of Simon's comic ditties reminiscent of Flanders and Swan!

Also available for children's concerts/workshops. Primary and secondary age ranges.

NB: Please note the fee given is a guide - please enquire for a touring quote.


"One of the world's great mandolinists" Simon Mayor is also a witty and entertaining performer. Appearing as soloist with the BBC Concert Orchestra at Wembley Arena he is regarded equally highly in classical and traditional circles alike. His recordings and live performances have been applauded from the Classical FM Artist Chart Top Ten to a Folk Album of the Year in The Daily Telegraph. He was recently awarded an honorary directorship of the Classical Mandolin Society of America. A student of Russian language and literature he turned to music and writing on graduation and has written six books of mandolin tuition and repertoire while hosting regular workshops throughout the UK and North America. His first book of poetry and anecdote (pub. 2018), was declared "‘Uplifting…magic… the start of something big’" on BBC Radio 3. His three-part series for BBC Radio 2, Marooned with a Mandolin, was "the best programme on Radio 2 this week" in The Independent while Gillian Reynolds declared "Simon Mayor is a real find" in the Daily Telegraph. One of his many comic songs featured in an eight-week trailer for The Simpsons (USA TV).

Hilary James' "elegant singing" (Daily Telegraph) easily crosses the great musical divide from baroque to big band jazz, folk and Berlioz. She is renowned for an unlikely taste in bass instruments, including her giant mandobass. A fine guitarist, she accompanies Simon's mandolin on anything from a Vivaldi concerto to a Brazilian tango. Her CD, "English Sketches," received 4 star reviews in both The Sunday Times and The Scotsman and was one of the Sunday Times Critics' Ten Best World Music Albums of the Year. The Yorkshire Post reviewing her album "Bluesy" declared "This is terrific!"