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Home and away. Classical music festivals for those looking to enjoy romantic music in a romantic setting this summer.
If you’re looking to get romantic this summer, the haunting Isle of Mull celebrates the Mendelssohn on Mull Festival (www.mullfest.org.uk ) from the 3rd to the 9th of July, with concerts and recitals focusing on Romantic composers in an appropriately sublime setting. It’s a rare opportunity to link music and the nature of the Inner Hebrides, so admired by Mendelssohn himself.
Musicians from all over the world will be performing works by Schumann, Schubert, Brahms and other great masters, in equally great locations, such as the castles of Duart and Glengorm, Salen Church, Craignure Hall and one of the most ancient and culturally significant Scottish heritage islands, Iona Abbey.
Take time to visit Torosay Castle, on the south-east coast of Mull. This 19th-century Scottish Baronial building by David Bryce has large formal gardens filled with unusual plant life and spectacular views out over the bay.
Alternatively, if you prefer somewhere more far flung, book a cheap flight with Ryanair (www.ryanair.com) to Tampere, and take the train to Mänttä-Vilppula in the Finnish lake district, which also offers a tantalizing mix of nature and culture. The Mänttä Music festival is held at the end of June, with the concert hall Mäntän Klubi providing the stage for a fine selection of Finnish and international concert pianists. Visit www.manttavilppulamatkaill.fi/en.php for more details.