24 Apr

Response to COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused huge disruption to normal life for all of us. We’d therefore like to take this opportunity to send a message of deep condolence to any of the wider Presteigne Festival community who have lost relatives or friends.

Originally, the plan was to open 2020 Festival online and postal ticket sales on 28 April; this has now been postponed.

It is essential for us to follow UK Government and Welsh Assembly advice and, more importantly, to prioritise the safety and welfare of our audience, volunteers, host community, staff and performing artists.

The Board and Festival Team are working tirelessly, looking at alternatives for the delivery of all or part of the 2020 Festival. Obviously, our dearest wish is to retain as much of the live programme as we possibly can but, should conditions limit us, we are also looking into the possibility of commissioning original sound and video content.

If restrictions are lifted in time and it is possible to safely stage the August Festival as planned, online and postal ticket sales will open in early June.

Further news bulletins will be released as and when important decisions are made. In the meantime, we hope that our supporters, artists, volunteers and staff are managing to limit the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and that we will soon be reunited to share our mutual love for music and the arts.

George Vass ARAM
Artistic Director | 24 April 2020

21 Dec

Beethoven Celebration in aid of the 2020 Presteigne Festival

Beethoven Celebration in aid of the Presteigne Festival | Wednesday 5 February

Our London fundraising event, taking place on Wednesday 5 February 2020 at the beautiful home of Bob and Elisabeth Boas, will celebrate the 250th birthday year of
Ludwig van Beethoven.

 

 

 

 

 

Xiaowen Shang (l), Fenella Humphreys (r)                     

The popular all-Beethoven programme includes the ‘MoonlightSonata, played by rising Chinese star Xiaowen Shang, who also accompanies the brilliant violinist and Presteigne favourite Fenella Humphreys in the beautiful ‘SpringSonata. Finally, Xiaowen is joined in a performance of the early Quintet for piano and wind instruments by James Turnbull (oboe), Catriona Scott (clarinet), Tom Oxley (bassoon) and Paul Cott (horn).

Artistic director George Vass will be on hand to talk about the 2020 Festival programme and, after the concert, there will be an opportunity to chat with the artists over wine and canapés.

We are hugely grateful to Bob and Elisabeth Boas for hosting this annual event once again – full booking details are available here – please book early, space is limited and we expect huge demand for this event.

04 Oct

Presteigne Festival Autumn Tour 2019

Our popular Autumn Tour takes to the road this month and next with a great programme of music for percussion and piano by Steve Reich, Hannah Lash and Howard Skempton, also featuring exciting new works from Mark David Boden, Gregory Rose and 2018/19 RPS Emerging Composer, Liam Mattison.

GBSR Duo – George Barton and Siwan Rhys

The virtuoso percussion and piano recital by George Barton and Siwan Rhys at Presteigne this year was one of the stand-out successes of the Festival. If you missed the duo in the summer, here are two excellent opportunities to hear them in some fabulous repertoire – click on links for full details:

Friday 18 October at 1pm
Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham University B15 2TS

Friday 22 November at 7.30pm
Jacqueline du Pre Music Building, St Hilda’s College, Oxford OX4 1DY

05 Sep

2019 Presteigne Festival reviews

A huge thank you to everyone who attended events at the 2019 Presteigne Festival this year – a fabulous programme of world class music-making from a roster of superb musicians, engaging talks on music and musicians, not forgetting art exhibitions, literature events, films and popular for the third year, Presteigne Open Studios.

Audience numbers continued to grow, with 81% of all available tickets sold and we again welcomed a great number of people to the Festival for the first time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cheryl Frances-Hoad, composer-in-residence

The American theme offered a particularly wide choice of music from Bartók and Stravinsky via Barber, Copland and Gershwin to Richard Rodgers and music from the Great American Songbook – all interspersed with contemporary British works and pieces by composers-in-residence Cheryl Frances-Hoad and Hannah Lash, with a wonderful collection of no fewer than nine specially commissioned pieces.

Here are the reviews currently available:

Classical Source, 23.8.19
Classical Source, 24.8.19
Classical Source, 24.8.19
Midlands Music Reviews, 24.8.19
The Guardian, 26.8.19
Midlands Music Reviews, 26.8.19
Western Mail, 30.8.19
Wales Arts Review, 31.8.19
Hereford Times, 2.9.19
Musical Opinion Quarterly, October 2019

 

22 Jul

2019 Presteigne Festival | Box Office now open for telephone orders and personal callers

With just over four weeks to go until the opening night of the 2019 Festival, there is a real sense of excitement in Presteigne. Some 50% of the tickets have already been sold, and a number of our daytime events at smaller venues are very close to selling out – please book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Situated at the Assembly Rooms, Broad Street, Presteigne LD8 2AD, the Festival Box Office is now open for telephone sales and personal callers. Please do not send Presteigne Festival mail to this address but instead use P O Box 30, Presteigne LD8 2WF

2019 Presteigne Festival Box Office Opening Times

15 July – 17 August
Monday – Saturday, 11am – 2pm

19 – 27  August
Daily, 10am – 5pm

Telephone 01544 267 800

If you wish to book tickets out of Box Office hours, Online Booking is available here

29 Apr

2019 Presteigne Festival | Online booking now open

Presteigne Festival
22-27 August 2019

The 2019 Presteigne Festival was launched earlier this month – six days of exciting Arts events with a fabulous American theme running throughout and, as always, a focus on the music of living composers.

There is an exploration of the work of composers-in-residence – Cheryl Frances-Hoad and American composer and virtuoso harpist Hannah Lash (pictured above) – including major new pieces.

Also premiered are Festival commissions from James Francis Brown, Harriet Grainger, Liam Mattison, Freya Waley-Cohen and Adrian Williams.

A rich variety of supporting events extends the American theme still further with Sarah Gabriel’s delightful one-woman show, Dorothy Parker takes a Trip, a tribute to Richard Rodgers – The Sound of His Music, three legendary American movies and talks from Stephen Johnson, Ian Marchant, Fiona Sampson, Nicholas Murray and Peter Lord.

The artist line-up sees the welcome return of Festival favourites Tom Poster, Alice Neary and Sarah-Jane Bradley, whilst Presteigne first-timers include the Albion Quartet, virtuoso flautist Katherine Bryan, outstanding young violinist Mathilde Milwidsky and silver-voiced soprano Elizabeth Cragg.

Booking
General online and postal booking is now open – book here

View or download the Festival Brochure here

22 Feb

Support the 2019 Presteigne Festival

After a hugely successful fundraising concert in London earlier this month, excitement is beginning to mount for the 2019 edition of the Presteigne Festival. The full programme is to be announced at the beginning of April and we’ll be sending shiny new Festival Brochures to our family of Benefactors, Patrons and Friends before the official announcement.

We hope to attract many new individual Festival supporters this year, and hope that you’ll be interested in becoming a Friend, Patron or Benefactor of the 2019 Presteigne Festival.

For many years the Festival was supported financially by Powys County Council however, Powys has recently been forced to axe all its community and cultural funding and we therefore need to find new areas of support.

Many individuals have already helped by making donations and a number of Trusts and Foundations are being extremely supportive – it would be wonderful if you could consider a donation to the Festival this year – we certainly have one of our strongest programmes ever. 

Details of the various schemes can be found on this special page, please join our ever-expanding group of Festival supporters. In return, we can offer you some great additional benefits.

09 Jan

A Schubert Evening in aid of the 2019 Presteigne Festival

A Schubert Evening in aid of the Presteigne Festival | Wednesday 6 February

We are delighted to announce that our 2019 London fund-raising event on Wednesday 6 February will be a celebration of the music of Franz Schubert.

This Schubertiade will take place at the beautiful London home of Bob and Elisabeth Boas in Mansfield Street, close to Oxford Circus, and will feature performances from no fewer than 7 Presteigne Festival favourites – the fabulous Leonore Trio (Benjamin Nabarro violin, Gemma Rosefield cello and Tim Horton piano) join forces with Rachel Roberts viola and Ben Daniel-Greep double bass. Whilst glorious Welsh mezzo Rebecca Afonwy-Jones is accompanied by Timothy End.

Our grateful thanks go to Bob and Elisabeth for the use of such a wonderful venue and to the musicians for so generously supporting the Presteigne Festival.

 

 

 

 

Leonore Trio

The first part of the programme will contrast two of Schubert’s Impromptus for solo piano (Impromptu in G flat, D899 No 3 and Impromptu in A flat, D899 No 4), with a group of eight of his best-loved songs including Ständchen, Du bist die Ruh, An die Musik, Die Junge Nonne and An die Nachtigall, whilst the second half is given over to a performance of one of the greatest of all chamber music pieces, the Trout Quintet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rebecca Afonwy-Jones and Timothy End

Artistic director George Vass will be on hand to talk about the 2019 Presteigne Festival programme and, after the concert, there will be an opportunity to chat with the artists over wine and canapés.

STOP PRESS | This event is now fully booked

06 Sep

2018 Presteigne Festival reviews

A big thank you to all who supported the Presteigne Festival this year – a wonderfully eclectic programme of exceptional music-making from some truly amazing musicians with an inspired collection of seven specially commissioned works, engaging talks on music and musicians – not forgetting art exhibitions, literature, film, poetry and, for the first time this year, Open Studios.

Audience numbers continue to remain excellent, with many people sampling the Festival for the first time this year; the central Baltic/Nordic feature, interspersed with music by composer-in-residence Martin Butler and birthday celebrations for Michael Berkeley and David Matthews made for a fabulous musical contrast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Martin Butler, composer-in-residence

Concert reviews can be found by following the links below:

The Guardian, 27.8.18
The Times, 31.8.18
The Birmingham Post I, 25.8.18
The Birmingham Post II, 28.8.18
Musical Opinion Quarterly, October 2018
Wales Arts Review, 27.8.18
Classical Source
Hereford Times, 3.9.18

16 Jul

Festival Box Office now open for telephone orders and personal callers

With just under six weeks until the opening night of the 2018 Festival, there is a real feeling of excitement in Presteigne. 50% of the tickets have already been sold, so please book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Situated at the Assembly Rooms, Broad Street, Presteigne LD8 2AD, the Festival Box Office is now open for telephone sales and personal callers. Please do not send Presteigne Festival mail to this address but instead use P O Box 30, Presteigne LD8 2WF

2018 Presteigne Festival Box Office Opening Times

16 July – 18 August
Monday – Saturday, 11am – 2pm

20 – 28  August
Daily, 10am – 5pm

Telephone 01544 267 800

If you wish to book tickets out of Box Office hours, Online Booking is available here