The Presteigne Festival: Creating Landscapes
Creating Landscapes was a cross-arts project which brought together composers and visual artists of international repute to create new pieces of music and art for the 2010 Presteigne Festival. The project also gave young people from primary schools in rural Herefordshire and Powys the opportunity to work with professional artists, thus providing valuable learning activities. The inspiration for Creating Landscapes was the rich heritage and natural beauty of the Welsh Marches. In broad terms the project developed participants and audiences’ appreciation of the arts and local heritage, combining art and music in a unique way, enriching the cultural life of the area and bringing a wider audience to the Festival.
The Festival commissioned five renowned composers (Mark Bowden, Cheryl Frances-Hoad, Cecilia McDowall, Paul Patterson and Lynne Plowman) and two prominent visual artists (Veronica Gibson and Ashley Davies) to create works inspired by selected locations of great natural beauty or historical significance straddling the English/Welsh border. Five new wind quintet pieces were premiered by the Galliard Ensemble and the art works were exhibited during the 2010 Presteigne Festival; all were featured again in a major community concert which took place in Presteigne on 24 September 2010. A full range of work by the commissioned artists and by eminent local photographer, Gareth Rees-Roberts, was shown as part of the 2010 Festival Exhibition, presented in association with the Sidney Nolan Trust at The Rodd, Presteigne.
Children from five primary schools (Presteigne, Gladestry, Leintwardine, Shobdon and Whitton) worked together with professional artists and composers to create their own artwork and music inspired by the rolling landscape of the Welsh Marches. Schools visited their specially chosen sites, and these visits were followed by school workshops which took place both before and after the 2010 Presteigne Festival. The culmination of the whole project was a special community concert, when all five new five commissions were presented again alongside artwork and musical performances by the children themselves.
The Presteigne Festival would like to thank the following grant giving bodies for their generous financial support of the Creating Landscapes project:
Arts Council England
Arts Council of Wales
Powys County Council
Michael Tippett Musical Foundation
Ernest Cook Trust
Colwinston Charitable Trust
W A Cadbury Charitable Trust