The Tetbury Music Festival takes place over the first weekend of October every year, and the days running up to it. It is a highlight of the Autumn calendar. The nights are drawing in and a week of fine music and meeting friends is the best way to embrace the season.
A visit to the beautiful and ancient town of Tetbury in the Cotswolds makes the perfect cultural weekend break. It is a highlight for locals as well as for those travelling from across the UK and overseas for the internationally acclaimed musicians. Concerts range from early to classical to contemporary music, with lectures and interviews to share insight, understanding and new ways of appreciating the context in which these great works were written.
The Festival was founded in 2003 by Graham Kean, the Director of Music at St Marys’ Church and Elise Smith OBE, a life-long supporter and Patron of the Arts. Acclaimed ‘cellist Steven Isserlis was the first Artistic Director; conductor and ‘cellist Jonathan Cohen has been Artistic Director since 2013. His Majesty King Charles III is the Festival’s patron. The Festival is run by a volunteer Board of music lovers and Festival supporters with a wide range of skills from marketing to finance to design.
The majority of concerts take place in the beautiful parish church of St Marys' although the Festival includes other venues from time to time. An exceptionally fine example of early Georgian Gothic architecture, the Church has an acoustic to match, which attracts musicians and audience alike. Several concerts have been recorded over the years for broadcast on BBC Radio 3, who collaborated with the Festival with a Spring series for recording and broadcast in 2019.
The 2020 Tetbury Music Festival was among the many Festivals and other events that had to be cancelled as a consequence of the Covid-19 Pandemic. An informal recording of a few pieces which would have been performed at the Festival was made and is available in the Blog to watch.
The festival has welcomed the finest classical musicians to the heart of the Cotswolds. Previous performers include Julian Bliss, Felicity Lott, Thomas Allen, Ben Grosvenor, Pavel Kolesnikov, Angela Hewitt, Radu Lupu, Mark Padmore, The Sixteen, Sarah Connolly, Rachel Podger, Voces8 - see who's been here and when in the gallery.
You can also connect with our fellow Cotswolds' Festivals here.