String quartet soothes shoppers

VIDEO What better diversion from a manic day of shopping in Ipswich than the sound of a string quartet?

WHAT better diversion from a manic day of shopping in Ipswich than the sound of a string quartet?

A group of former Copleston students provided the soundtrack to a sundrenched day in town and garnered plenty of interest.

The foursome is made up of Elizabeth Allkins, 17, from Colchester Road, Ipswich; Abby Penreath, 18, of Grove Lane, Ipswich; Catherine Allen, 16, of Heath Lane, Ipswich and Esther Forty, 18, of St John's Road, Ipswich.

The girls impressed onlookers with their busking and revealed that it's not just about making money.

Miss Penreath, who plays the viola and studies music in America, started performing with her dad when she was just 10-years-old.

She said: “I've been busking for years and it paid my way through university but it's not the only thing we do. We perform at weddings, garden parties and schools but we haven't done a Bar Mitzvah yet!”

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All the girls have achieved at least grade seven with their chosen instruments, the most expensive of which costs about £3,000. Their performance was so popular that after just an hour they had been approached for no less than four functions bookings and collected a violin case full of cash.

Miss Penreath: “The most we've ever made is £120 in an hour. We like playing classical music but we're pretty normal and don't sit down listening to it all day.”