Mountains musos make their mark

Daniel Holdsworth (left) and Aidan Roberts perform Tubular Bells for Two at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Photo: Joanne Kee.
Daniel Holdsworth (left) and Aidan Roberts perform Tubular Bells for Two at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Photo: Joanne Kee.

Two Blue Mountains musicians have become a breakout hit of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, receiving five star reviews and winning a prestigious critics’ award in the first week of the festival.

Daniel Holdsworth and Aidan Roberts have been wowing UK audiences with their live performance of the classic 1973 Mike Oldfield album, Tubular Bells, with the show becoming an unqualified hit with audiences and critics

Tubular Bells for Two won a Bank of Scotland Herald Angel in the festival’s first week, an award chosen by a panel of The Herald’s art critics, while The Edinburgh Evening News described the show as “a virtuoso performance from two musicians at the top of their game”.

“This will be THE show of the 2012 Edinburgh Fringe and it’s already selling out. As for the audience, so reticent as the lights dimmed at the start, well, they were on their feet and roaring by the end,” wrote News critic Liam Rudden in his five-star review.

The Scotsman also gave Tubular Bells for Two five stars while Broadway Baby concluded: “It’s a testament to the players’ skill that without bombastic effects or lengthy interaction they can mesmerise their audience and inspire such pleasure.”

The two musicians couldn’t have asked for a better lead-in to the festival when Mike Oldfield performed excerpts from Tubular Bells at the opening ceremony of the London Olympics.

“We didn’t expect such an immediate buzz around the album, which was possibly helped by the Olympics,” Aidan told the Gazette.

“Over here audiences seem to react with the same set of emotions, but there seems to be a more personal ownership felt over the album.”

Former Blaxland High School student Daniel said the experience has been one he won’t forget.

“It’s all been a bit overwhelming. Winning an award, getting five-star reviews, it’s a far cry from jamming in a house in Glenbrook,” he said.

About the only challenge the pair has faced in Edinburgh has been coping with conditions in the small theatre.

“There’s no air-conditioning in the venues either, so it’s like a sauna with all the lights on and all those people,” said Daniel.

“It’s a real workout,” said Aidan.

“We’re drinking about two litres of water and Powerade a day. I think we’re coming home a few kilos lighter.”

Tubular Bells for Two finishes its Edinburgh Festival Fringe run on August 27.