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Bond girls have given the string quartet a 21st century makeover

Bond University students Amity Brand and Vanessa Smith may well be used to performing on stage but, on Sunday July 20, they’ll be playing in front of their Bond classmates for the very first time.

Amity and Vanessa, together with fellow classical musicians Claudia Vogel and Radha Sukla make up the edgy, cross-over string quartet Quatro and will open as the support act for the Round Mountain Girls at the next Live at Bond series in the ADCO Amphitheatre.

Complementing the Round Mountain Girls’ wild alternative country/Celtic blend, the angelic young foursome have adapted their classical roots to modern and rock favourites, mixing it up with their exquisite vocals and some slick choreography.

Lead violinist and vocalist, Amity is studying her Bachelor of Journalism at Bond and hopes to break into the television industry as a journalist or presenter after she graduates in December. With a background in musical theatre and acting, she has already built up an impressive resume of on-camera experience with presenting and hosting stints on Channel 10’s Totally Wild and Scope, as well as numerous TV commercials.

As a Psychology student, Vanessa still has a few more years of study ahead but, like her Quatro bandmates, is managing to combine her university commitments with live gigs.

Amity, Vanessa, Claudia and Radha met as high school students in their hometown of Bundaberg. Drawn together by their classical music training, they decided to push the boundaries and do something out of the box by branching out into the rock, Celtic and country genres.

Their repertoire ranges from a heart-wrenching rendition of Leonard Cohen’s anthemic ‘Hallelujah’ to Guns ‘n’ Roses’ ‘Sweet Child of Mine’ and everything in between.

Since their earliest performances in Bundaberg, they’ve been attracting attention – not just for the uplifting spirit of their music, but for the spirit of their generosity.

After winning the Golden Fiddle High Achievement Award at the Tamworth Country Music Festival in 2011, they hit the streets busking to raise money for the victims of the devastating North Queensland floods. The following year, they toured Barcaldine, Longreach, Emerald, Winton and their own hometown to raise money for Angel Flight. And last year, they performed at a fundraiser in Hervey Bay for the Happy Hearts, Happy World orphanage program in India.

In terms of a national spotlight, they managed to grab everyone’s attention when they were chosen from 30,000 hopefuls to be the opening act on Channel 10’s re-vamped Young Talent Time, performing a medley of ‘With or Without You’ and ‘Explosion’.

On Sunday, July 20, Quatro will kick off proceedings for the final Live at Bond series at 2pm in the ADCO Amphitheatre at Bond University, followed by headline act, the Round Mountain Girls.

Entry is free and parking is available in parking area PG3. Wine, beer, champagne, non-alcoholic beverages and snacks will be available for purchase onsite.

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