-Cloud Valley Home- -Andrew Cronshaw home- -News & Live-  -Bio- -Discography-  -Press- -SANS-  -Gallery- 
 -Journalism-  -Reviews written for fRoots-  -Contact- 

Andrew Cronshaw News & Live

Latest release:

Cloud Valley CV2014 (released April 2014)

SANS is the quartet of multi-instrumentalist Andrew Cronshaw, the great Finnish singer Sanna Kurki-Suonio, multi-instrumental reeds player Ian Blake, and Tigran Aleksanyan, Armenian master of his country’s heart-rendingly voice-like reed pipe, the duduk.

Andrew Cronshaw  electric zither, fujara, marovantele, kantele
Sanna Kurki-Suonio  voice
Tigran Aleksanyan  duduk
Ian Blake: bass clarinet, soprano sax

 Formed by the musicians who made Cronshaw’s most recent CD, The Unbroken Surface of Snow, SANS is an instrumental and vocal combination not found in any other band in the world, in which the four members draw deeply on their different but remarkably compatible traditions including the ancient Karelian songs that became Finland’s Kalevala, the sweeping melodies of Armenia and English folk-song. They combine to make a genuinely new music of extraordinary beauty, intensity and fluidity in which each performance is a new creation. So the band’s debut CD SANS Live was recorded live, on its December 2013 Flanders tour. 

 See the SANS web pages for more info and tour dates, and SANS on Facebook.

1. Läksin minä kesäyönä käymään - I went out on a summer's night
2. Omenankukka - Apple flower
3. Peter Pan
4. Tuuli - Wind
5. Waiwanen walitan waikiast' - I weep for my sins
6. Äiti ja meri - The mother and the sea
7. Äiu, äiu

(SANS's 2014 UK touring and CD are supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England)

SANS Live is available direct here from Cloud Valley  - please click one of rather garishly imperative 'buy' buttons below -
and from the usual shops and online sellers

SANS Live -
UK buyers (£11 including postage):

SANS Live - Non-UK buyers (£12 including postage):



The Unbroken Surface of Snow
Cloud Valley CV2009 (2008)

 Andrew Cronshaw with Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake, Sanna Kurki-Suonio

Available direct from Cloud Valley (please click one of the rather garishly imperative 'buy' buttons below)
and from the usual shops and online sellers

1. Käärme
2. Fujaruk
3. The Unbroken Surface of Snow
4. Mhàiri Mhìn Mheall-Shùileach (Gentle Dark-Eyed Mary)
5. Im Hogutz

In the seven years since Andrew Cronshaw's previous album, Ochre, most of his performances have featured a musician who until now hadn't appeared with him on CD - Armenian duduk master Tigran Aleksanyan. Now with The Unbroken Surface of Snow they record together, joined by long-time Cronshaw collaborator Ian Blake on bass clarinet and soprano sax, and the great Finnish singer Sanna Kurki-Suonio, probably best known outside Finland for her membership of Swedish/Finnish band Hedningarna. She sang on Cronshaw's sixth album The Language of Snakes back in 1993, and this time contributes a Finnish epic runo-song to the spacious, minimalist unfolding conversation of the new album's 34-minute title track.

After its release in October 2011 the album spent three months in the top 10 of the World Music Chart Europe.

"Delicate, haunting... glacial" - Robin Denselow, The Guardian

"Stunningly beautiful" - Fiona Talkington, BBC Radio 3

"Absolutely exquisite" - Mary Ann Kennedy, BBC Radio Scotland / BBC Radio 3

"Sublime" - Max Reinhardt, BBC Radio 3

"Music of snowflake-like singularity" - Ken Hunt, fRoots

"A palpable sense of space and peace" - Norman Chalmers, Scotland on Sunday

"Spacious, gracious, subtle, quietly surprising" - Doug Spencer, ABC Australian national radio

"Unfolds, seduces and ultimately mesmerises" - Tony Hillier, The Australian

"The music is sparse, glacial and utterly beautiful, with a wide, panoramic sense of infinite space;
you will happily lose yourself again and again in the title track,
a far northern wilderness transformed into sound"

- Tim Cumming, Songlines

"Ochre was already a masterpiece, but The Unbroken Surface of Snow is a
 musical paradise on earth"
- Marius Roeting, New Folk Sounds, Netherlands

"Deep, unfolding music... and like snow itself, it falls silently and accumulates
additional weight and resonance with repeated listening"
- Lee Blackstone, Rootsworld, USA

"If the BBC ever make a sequel to Frozen Planet, here surely is its emotive soundtrack" - David Quantick, Uncut

"This remarkable, quiet, haunting piece of folk art... The 34-minute title track is a Finnish creation myth set to
 a musical landscape that is as close to silence as a heavy snowfall, and more beautiful"

- Tim Cumming, The Independent

"Here is a great beauty that you might not notice immediately; it took me several months.
The music just came flowing towards me, as if I was on a summer meadow, looked up at the sky and saw white clouds drift past.
Or a winter night out in the country with the Milky Way's glittering ribbon of stars.
Such occasions when there is all the time in the world and no boundaries"

- Lennart Wretlind, Swedish national radio P2

Click here for fuller review quotes

Since the recording of the album the four musicians - Andrew Cronshaw, Tigran Aleksanyan, Sanna Kurki-Suonio and Ian Blake - have united as the band SANS, in which Sanna's and Ian's roles are much increased. See below, and the SANS pages for info and schedules; SANS show dates are also included in the Andrew Cronshaw schedule further down this page.
Andrew Cronshaw on Facebook

SANS on Facebook

The Unbroken Surface of Snow -
UK buyers (£11 including postage):

The Unbroken Surface of Snow - Non-UK buyers (£12 including postage):


more info and live dates

Digital releases
From March 1st 2013 all the CDs on Cloud Valley - SANS Live, the three most recent by Andrew Cronshaw and the Žegar Živi CD - are available as digital downloads via iTunes and other legal online sources. But we much prefer you to buy the physical CDs - that way you gat them as originally designed, and with all their rather nice packaging. The Andrew Cronshaw albums that were made for Topic have also recently been released digitally, as has the CD re-release of The Great Dark Water.

The Great Dark Water
re-released on CD
The Great Dark Water, first released as a vinyl LP on Waterfront in 1982, then incorporated into The Andrew Cronshaw CD, has been re-released on CD, with all its original artwork, by Acrobat Music Ltd as Trapeze TRACD6052. It's available from Cloud Valley Music here - as well as from other suppliers. Reviews of the re-release are on the Press page.

Reviews online
Reviews written by Andrew Cronshaw for fRoots magazine of over 2000 albums, mainly from the Nordic and Baltic countries, east and central Europe and Iberia, are now online (except those published in the last three months, and not features - buy the mag in its print or online version for those!). Find them here or via the Journalism page of this website.

Recordings and videos online
Some tracks in the discography on this website have 'listen' links beside the title. And there are some streaming tracks to be found in various other places including Spotify et al. Downloads of some albums and tracks are available via iTunes et al.
     There are links to some live videos in the schedule below, on the SANS YouTube playlist, and more can be found elsewhere on YouTube. There's also news, links and conversation on Andrew Cronshaw's Facebook music page and the SANS Facebook page.




May 24th: Hay Festival: St Mary's church, Hay-on-Wye, Powys, Wales, UK
(No - re-scheduling for next year)

June 10-13: Vaka Festival, Akureyri, Iceland

June 19th: The SANS Sessions, Cecil Sharp House, London, UK
June 20th: The SANS Sessions, Cecil Sharp House, London, UK
June 21st: The SANS Sessions, Cecil Sharp House, London, UK

June 24th: Sands Films, Rotherhithe, London, UK

June 27th: The SANS Sessions, Cecil Sharp House, London, UK
June 28th: The SANS Sessions, Cecil Sharp House, London, UK

July 11th: St Ethelburga's, London, UK (tbc) (Cronshaw, Aleksanyan & Blake)

All these 2015 shows except July 11 are with SANS


May 11th:
The Stables, Wavendon, Bucks, UK
May 13th: Turner Sims, Southampton, Hampshire, UK
May 14th: West End Centre, Aldershot, Hampshire, UK
May 15th: Canada Water Culture Space, London, UK
May 16th: Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester, UK

June 27th: Haapavesi Festival, Finland

July 26th: WOMAD festival, Wiltshire, UK
July 30th: Petworth Festival, W.Sussex, UK

October 2nd: Cecil Sharp House, London
October 3rd: The Welfare, Swansea, Wales, UK
October 4th: Colchester Arts Centre, Essex, UK

All these shows are with SANS



March 11th: Canberra 100 "Back to the Island", Aspen Island, Canberra, Australia
Andrew Cronshaw & Ian Blake

March 28th-31st: National Folk Festival, Canberra, Australia
SANS [Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake]

July 4th: Liverpool Philharmonic, Liverpool, UK
July 6th:
Cheltenham Music Festival, Cheltenham, UK
July 7th: Colchester Arts Centre, Colchester, UK

Dec 11th-19th
: SANS tour in Flanders:
Dec 11th: Cultuurcentrum Belgica, Dendermonde, Belgium
Dec 13th: Cultuurcentrum Evergem, Evergem, Belgium
Dec 14th: Cultuurcentrum De Ploter, Ternat, Belgium
Dec 15th: Cultureel Centrum Leopoldsburg, Leopoldsburg, Belgium
Dec 18th: Cultuurcentrum Ter Dilft, Bornem, Belgium
Dec 19th: Cultuurcentrum Zwaneberg, Heist-op-den-Berg, Belgium


June 23rd: Home Festival, Dartington Hall, nr. Totnes, Devon, UK
Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake
(Click here for a detailed review and pics of the show)

July 20th: EthnoAmbient Festival, Solin, nr. Split, Croatia
SANS: Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake
(Videos online from the show: click here and here)

August 4th: Special 'secret' show, Northamptonshire, UK
SANS: Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake
(Click here for a track from this show)

August 5th: Goldmark Art, Uppingham, Rutland, UK
SANS: Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake

September 15th & 16th: Whispering Woods, Bignor Park, W.Sussex, UK
Andrew Cronshaw, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake

September 26th: Riksscenen, Oslo, Norway
SANS: Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake

September 27th: Hellviktangen Kulturhus, Nesodden, Norway
SANS: Andrew Cronshaw, Sanna Kurki-Suonio, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake

November 7th: Rich Mix, London, UK
Tigran Aleksanyan & Andrew Cronshaw

December 8th: House concert, Hertfordshire, UK
Andrew Cronshaw solo


July 8th: Lichfield Festival: Lichfield Cathedral, Lichfield, Staffordshire, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan & Ian Blake]

July 11-15th: Kaustinen Festival, Kaustinen, Finland
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake & Sanna Kurki-Suonio]

October 23rd: St. Ethelburga's, London, UK
A special showcase, the first performance outside Finland by the new band:

: Andrew Cronshaw, Tigran Aleksanyan, Ian Blake & Sanna Kurki-Suonio

Andrew Cronshaw


February 5th: St Ethelburga's, Bishopsgate, London, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan]

March 31st: National Library of Australia, Canberra, Australia
[Solo illustrated lecture]

April 1st-4th: National Folk Festival, Canberra, Australia
[joined by Ian Blake]

April 9th-11th: Fairbridge Festival, nr. Perth, Australia
[joined by Ian Blake]

April 30th: St Ethelburga's, Bishopsgate, London, UK
[with Tigran Aleksanyan]
The Voice of Duduk, organised by . Video online here

May 29th: Maailma Kylässä festival, Helsinki, Finland
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan]

June 18th: Ethno Port festival, Poznan, Poland
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan and Svetlana Spajic]

August 14th: Livestock Festival, Stratton Audley, Oxfordshire, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan]

September 10th: King's Place Festival, King's Place, London, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan]

November 6th: Cecil Sharp House, "Looking for a New England 2" - London, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan]

November 14th: Colchester Arts Centre, Colchester, Essex, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan and Ian Blake]


February 7th: Colchester Arts Centre, Essex, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan]

February 26th: New Greenham Arts, Berkshire, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan]

November 8th: The Green Note, London, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan]


January 31st: Union Chapel, London, UK

April 11th: Polskie Radio Festival Nowa Tradycja, Warsaw, Poland
[joined by Svetlana Spajic (vox) and Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk etc),
and including a collaboration with
Wladislaw and Krzysztof Trebunia–Tutka]
[Highlights broadcast on Polskie Radio immediately following the show]

May 6th: Brighton Festival (Pavilion Theatre), Brighton, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk etc)]

July 18th: Kaustinen Festival, Kaustinen, Finland
[joined by
Ian Blake (reeds etc)]

July 26th & 27th: WOMAD festival, nr. Malmesbury, Wiltshire, UK
[joined by
Svetlana Spajic (vox), Tigran Aleksanyan (duduk), Ian Blake (reeds etc)]
[The first 20 minutes of the show on the 27th was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3, it can be heard on, and there's video of the first number here]

November 5th: Etnosoi festival, Helsinki, Finland
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan (duduk)]

December 20th: All Saints Church, Braunston, Northamptonshire, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan (duduk)]
Click here for YouTube video of part of this show

Ian Blake & Andrew CronshawSvetlana Spajic & ACTigran Aleksanyan



January 21st: Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk etc)]

February 10th: Half the World season at the Pizza on the Park, Knightsbridge, London, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk etc.), Attab Haddad (Iraqi oud), Louai Alhenawi (Syrian ney), Jenny Adejayan (cello), Zuzana Novak (mbira, vox)][The group also featured guest vocalist Natacha Atlas]

March 2nd: Maa ja Ilm Festival, Tartu, Estonia
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk)]

April 15th: Arsenaaltheater, Vlissingen, Netherlands
[solo, in a double bill with Iain Matthews]

June 23rd and 26th:
Pécs Festival, Pécs, Hungary

April 9th: Holywell Music Room, at Oxford Folk Festival, Oxford, UK
[solo, in double bill with Icelandic rímur singer Steindór Andersen & Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson]
June 9th: Viking festival, Karmøy, Norway
[solo; flame-lit show in reconstructed Viking longhouse]
June 11th: Orre Gamle Kirke (Orre old church), Klepp, nr.Stavanger, Norway
June 22nd: Norwich Arts Centre, Norwich, UK
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk etc.)]
June 30th & July 1st: Suoni dell'Altro Mondo festival: Incontri 2006 at Villa Penicina, Romagnese, nr.Genoa, Italy
 [2 concerts resulting from week of collaboration on north Italian music
Nikola Parov, Guo Yue, Stefano Valla, Beppe Gambetta, Ben Mandelson et al.]
July 6,7,8th: Førde Folk Music Festival, Førde, Norway
[joined by
Tigran Aleksanyan]
August 5th: (12 midday) The Big Chill festival, Eastnor Castle deer park, nr. Ledbury, Herefordshire, UK
August 17th: Half the World season at Live on the Park (The Pizza on the Park), Knightsbridge, London, UK
[joined by Tigran Aleksanyan]
August 19th: Chateau d'Abbadie, Hendaye at Bidasoa Folk Festival, Euskadi, Spain/France

2005 performances included:

June 19th: Celebrating Sanctuary Festival, London, UK
June 25th:
St Clement's Church at Leigh Folk Festival, Essex, UK
[At both of these joined by Tigran Aleksanyan (Armenian duduk)]
August 13th:  Festival Ethnoambient Salona, Solin, Croatia
August 21st: Alten Kirche at Krefelder Folklorefest, Krefeld, Germany
[At both of these joined by
Ian Blake]
September 28th: Concert in Montreal, Canada
October 1st: Concert for CBC Radio, Montreal, Canada
October 2nd: Concert in Montreal, Canada
[All three Canadian shows as trio with
Liu Fang (pipa, guzheng) and Pham Duc Thanh (dan bau)]


 In Autumn 2004, following the release of Ochre,  Andrew Cronshaw, Abdullah Chhadeh, Ian Blake and Bernard O'Neill performed together in the UK at:

September 23rd: St Georges, Brandon Hill, Bristol
October 2nd: Wiltshire Music Centre, Bradford on Avon
October 12th: National Centre for Early Music, York
October 15th: Union Chapel, Islington, London

Abdullah Chhadeh & Andrew Cronshaw

Abdullah Chhadeh & Andrew Cronshaw

Photos on this page by Ian Anderson (AC solo, Ian Blake & AC), Karolina Jankowska (Svetlana Spajic & AC), Jamie Orchard-Lisle (Abdullah Chhadeh & AC), AC (Tigran Aleksanyan), Valo Virtanen (Great Bear)

In 2002 there was the live touring show based on the CD On the Shoulders of the Great Bear - see Gallery for info and photos