AFTER seven years – is it really that long? – Flossie Malavialle was back in fine voice at the Manor House on Tuesday, September 11.

She claims not to read music, so plays by ear and tunes her guitar in keys 1 to 5, counting down the frets from the top.

However she does it, the result is impressive and her range is wide, both vocally and in terms of repertoire.

Her set began with Keith Pearson’s More Hills to Climb and moved on to numbers by Tracy Chapman, Paul McCartney and Abba.

Classic chansons françaises included Edith Piaf’s La Foule and Jacques Brel’s Ne me Quitte Pas, as well as an energetic rendering of Brel’s Le Port d’Amsterdam. She also gave the audience a haunting Spanish ballad and a taste of her new album, Live. This was Luka, a searing evocation of domestic abuse, often misunderstood – as she said – as a simple dance number.

A memorable evening, in a perfect venue. The Manor House is a huge asset to Ilkley, with a multitude of events planned. Check them out on the website

by Judith Dunn