The Aggies return to sprinkle Christmas stardust over Banbury

The Christmas band St Agnes Fountain returns to Banbury next weekend (December 7 and 8) to kick off the festive season in sparkling style.
St Agnes Fountain are, l - r, David Hughes, Julie Matthews, Chris Leslie and Chris WhileSt Agnes Fountain are, l - r, David Hughes, Julie Matthews, Chris Leslie and Chris While
St Agnes Fountain are, l - r, David Hughes, Julie Matthews, Chris Leslie and Chris While

The Aggies, as they refer to themselves, are on their 19th sell-out Christmas Tour and play two dates at The Mill Theatre.

Their seasonal music is unique and many fans return year after year to hear their old favourites and St Agnes Fountain's innovative new twists on traditional Christmas songs.

The band features Adderbury's Chris Leslie (Fairport Convention) with David Hughes (Radio 4) with the amazing vocal duo Chris While and Julie Matthews. Between them the four produce a remarkable festive show that never fails to delight its audiences.

Musical invention, vocal talent, laughter, writings, readings and some brilliant musicianship are all guaranteed to give the Christmas season a fantastic start.

St Agnes Fountain, formed in 2001, has now released twelve treasured albums; eight studio albums and two live CDs as well as a couple of ‘Best Of’ albums but it is without question their magical live performances that have endeared them to an ever-growing audience.

Tickets were actually being sold for this year's tour as the curtains fell last year.

"We hope this December to bring more of our music, humour and heartfelt renditions of your favourite Christmas tunes both original and those you know so well (or thought you did!)," said Chris Leslie.

You can find out more about St Agnes Fountain here and book tickets for the Banbury gigs here. The Mill concerts are on Sunday, December 8 and Monday, December 9 at 7.30pm.

Chris Leslie is a multi instrumentalist and singer-songwriter based in Adderbury and known best for his 23 years with Fairport Convention.

He has toured and recorded with numerous other top musicians including Steve Ashley, the Albion Band, Jez Lowe, Ian Anderson, Chris While and Julie Matthews, Whippersnapper, Alan Stivell, Feast of Fiddles and, of course, St. Agnes Fountain.

Chris has also provided music for a number of Radio Four plays and classic serials. His fiddle playing has also been heard on the TV series Heartbeat, Midsommer Murders and Billy Connolly’s World Tour of Scotland. Chris plays fiddle, mandolin, tenor guitar, bouzouki, ukelele, banjo, oud, whistle and native american flute.

David Hughes is an accomplished acoustic guitarist, songwriter, author and playwright. His sharp, half-spoken delivery and rhythmically-percussive finger-style guitar earned him regular slots on BBC Radio Four's Loose Ends with the late Ned Sherrin.

Chris While (vocals, guitar, bodhran, darbuka and percussion), and Julie Matthews (vocals, piano, guitar, accordion and gazouki) have been nominated ten times in the BBC Radio 2 Folk music awards in the 'best song, best duo, and best live act' categories and winning best duo in 2009. This year they celebrated 25 years together as a duo..

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