It is always exciting to programme a new season, though frustrating when the availability of a much-desired artist eludes the Festival schedule by just a day or two.
There is a major theme again for 2016, ‘Music inspired by Folk Sources’ - folk songs, melodies, stories, poems, rituals - which allows both for considerable variety, and influences from across the globe. Many major composers have responded in various ways to the richness of folk culture. But I don’t believe that a Festival should be inflexible as regards to rigorously sticking to a theme, so don’t be surprised if a secondary theme, such as ‘Bach’, finds its way on the schedule of events.
Last year saw a significant increase in the number of younger generation members of our audience, a trend we are keen to build on. We will be continuing our lunchtime series of concerts presenting some wonderful young artists, and welcoming back the Yehudi Menuhin School celebrating the 100th anniversary of the birth of the legendary violinist. We also plan to have at least one masterclass.
I would like to give a big thank you to our Benefactors, Friends and Sponsors, for without their generous support we would not be able to offer such a series of events for you to enjoy in November.
Anthony Wilkinson Festival Director