Exclusive StereoNET Offer: Free Hi-Res Classical Download
Over the past few months, StereoNET writer Rafael Todes has been playing lockdown concerts with his family, in his front garden at his home in London's Bayswater district. When he's not scribbling about high-end hi-fi for this website, Raffy is a professional classical musician and member of the famous Allegri String Quartet. He's also a teacher at the Royal Academy of Music and father to two gifted young musicians – Max (cello) and Isabella (violin) – and husband to Helena (viola). The only non-musical member of his family is Georgie the dog, whose main passion is chewing things.
Last month, Raffy and family found themselves in the British national press as they were told to stop performing their concerts by two passing Police officers.
The concerts were done for no other reason than to keep the spirits of the neighbours up as the peak of the coronavirus hit London, and they observed full social distancing. As a result, the Alexander Street Quartet had to hang up its bows, but buoyed by many messages of support, the family decided to hold a VE Day charity concert at St John's Hospice, North London, to raise money for people impacted by Covid-19. It took place in the scenic surroundings of the hospice's award-winning Chelsea Flower Show garden.
We are delighted to be able to give you the link to the full video of the concert, and also a bonus free download for StereoNET readers of two tracks in glorious hi-res 2.0 PCM stereo at 24-bit, 48kHz resolution. The pieces are the Mozart Hunt Quartet in Eb K458 and 2, and the classic song We'll Meet Again, popularised by Dame Vera Lynn during World War II. Audiophiles will be reassured to know that recording was done live, carefully mic'd and with minimal processing; no effects were applied. It's a great chance to hear a fine string quartet playing beautiful instruments in a natural setting – and the playing isn't bad either!
To download the audio, click here and hit the drop-down download icon; the file is 186MB.
You can also watch the video of the event below:
Should you find yourself able to donate to St John's Hospice, then just click here.
Raffy told StereoNET:
I do hope StereoNET readers enjoy this music on their systems, and if possible help me raise money for St John's Hospice – which gave excellent care to my late father.
David started his career in 1993 writing for Hi-Fi World and went on to edit the magazine for nearly a decade. He was then made Editor of Hi-Fi Choice and continued to freelance for it and Hi-Fi News until becoming StereoNET’s Editor-in-Chief.