IT will be a special homecoming for Nicola Benedetti MBE as she hosts a special fundraising concert in her family home in aid of the local music scene.

The world-renowned violinist from West Kilbride spoke exclusively to the News about the event - and says it promises to be an evening to remember.

Nicola is one of the most sought-after violinists of her generation and regularly makes appearances in the world's leading concert halls.

But after being inspired by the ambience and setting as her sister was wed in the local property last year, she decided there would be no place like home to help local aspiring artists.

Nicola says: "My sister was married in the home last September and it was so lovely and got me thinking.

"We have transformed the space for performing inside and it will provide a very beautiful and intimate evening for an amazing cause which I am very passionate about.

"All monies raised will go towards music provision in North Ayrshire and that is very important to me."

The prestigious one-off event takes place on Sunday July 14 and Nicola will be joined by jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis.

This special event will include a one-hour recital from Nicola and regular duo partner, pianist Alexei Grynyuk, a buffet dinner, followed by a one-hour recital from the Wynton Marsalis Quartet.

Nicola and Wynton are both dedicated, passionate ambassadors and leaders in music education.

The award-winning violinist says she has 'so much love for the people and music-making in Ayrshire' wants to do all she can to protect music education in the district and hopes this event will raise a significant sum of money.

The 31-year-old performer said: "I want to do all she can to protect music education in the district and hope this event will raise a significant sum of money.

"Hopefully places the money will be channelled into will lead to other concerts which can raise funds for other causes and continue the positivity that music can bring."

Nicola says she is very much looking forward to the unique opportunity of performing in a relaxed setting she is so familiar with.

She told the News: "I love performing in Scotland, and what could be better than in your own home?

"I have just been involved in a concert with 1,200 young instrumentalists at the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow and it was incredible. I love the straight forwardness of the people and I love the closeness you get in front of an appreciative audience."

Nicola was joined by the violinist and conductor Sir James McMillan, who lives in Largs, at the orchestral city event, described as 'inspiring' by Scotland’s Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop.

Nicola new album is released on 12 July on Decca Classics and features premiere recordings of two works written especially for her by Mr Marsalis.

Tickets for the upcoming concert are £50 each and are available on a first come first served basis. Visit