Thaxted Festival 2024 Events

Season Launch and Concert

Sunday 18 February, 3.00pm

Join us in Thaxted Church for the launch of our 2024 season. There will be wonderful singing from Wild Arts, including items from their new production of Mozart’s The Magic Flute.

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Kleio Quartet in Braintree

Saturday 23 March, 3.00pm

Venue: Braintree Town Hall. Join us for a relaxed afternoon recital with the dynamic Kleio Quartet, in Braintree Town Hall.

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Pre-Concert Discussion

Friday 21 June, 6.00pm-7.00pm

Join our 2024 Artists-in-Residence for a free lively pre-concert discussion, which will set the scene for the opening concert of our season.

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Opening Night Concert: London Mozart Players

Friday 21 June, 7.30pm

Our Orchestra-in-Residence opens our Festival with 3 works by Gustav Holst, marking the 150th anniversary of his birth. We also feature the world première of Noah Max’s Symphony No 1, and Iyad Sughayer plays Mozart’s much-loved Piano Concerto No 23.

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Piano Masterclass with Iyad Sughayer

Saturday 22 June, 12 noon

Join Iyad Sughayer as he takes selected pianists through their paces in this masterclass session in Thaxted Church.

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Nadine Benjamin, soprano & Jan Karl Rautio, piano

Saturday 22 June, 7.30pm

Songs and arias by Puccini and Verdi. Acclaimed as ‘one of the greatest vocal talents around today’ by Scene and Heard International, we welcome leading soprano Nadine Benjamin MBE to Thaxted.

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Holst: In the Bleak Midwinter

Sunday 23 June, 2.30pm

A showing of the first full-length film study of Holst’s life and work, with the director, Tony Palmer, at Saffron Screen.

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Joanna Eden Trio; Joanna Eden, piano

Sunday 23 June, 7.30pm

With six solo albums to her credit, Joanna is considered one of the finest singer-pianists in the UK, with a style that covers a broad spectrum, through jazz, soul, bossa nova and blues.

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Private View at the Fry Art Gallery

Wednesday 26 June, 7.30pm

Join us for music and twentieth century art at the delightful Fry Art Gallery, Saffron Walden.

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Stevens and Pound

Friday 28 June, 7.30pm

ASCEND: Holst and Vaughan Williams re-imagined. Virtuoso percussionist Delia Stevens and melodion/harmonica player Will Pound join to celebrate Holst and Vaughan Williams in the folk idiom which was so dear to both composers.

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Lincoln Organ Recital

Saturday 29 June, 12.00 noon

Peter Holder, Sub-organist, Westminster Abbey. In his role at Westminster Abbey, Peter Holder was the principal organist for the funeral of HM Queen Elizabeth II and the coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla.

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Holst and Vaughan Williams on Record: Andrew Marsden

Saturday 29 June, 3.00pm

Hear performances of works by Holst and Vaughan Williams as they were originally recorded, presented by an expert collector.

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The Nash Ensemble

Saturday 29 June, 7.30 pm

The Nash Ensemble present a sumptuous concert of music by Schubert, Beethoven and Berwald. Resident Chamber Ensemble at Wigmore Hall, Nash Ensemble are described as ‘chamber music royalty’.

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Wild Arts: Mozart, The Magic Flute

Sunday 30 June, 5.00pm

Orlando Jopling Musical Director / James Hurley Director. Critically acclaimed opera company Wild Arts (★★★★★ Opera Now, ★★★★ The Guardian) make a welcome return to Thaxted with an exciting new production of Mozart’s final opera. Long interval for picnics/dining!

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COSMOS: a celebration of The Planets

Friday 5 July, 7.30pm

Zeb Soanes & Selina Cadell, narrators / Echo Ensemble, conductor: Noah Max. Thaxted Festival patron and Classic FM presenter Zeb Soanes introduces a rich programme of words and music, inspired by themes in Holst’s The Planets. Also featuring Selina Cadell (Victoria Wood, Doc Martin).

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Neil Balfour, baritone / Sholto Kynoch, piano

Saturday 6 July, 3.00pm

Rising star baritone Neil Balfour is joined by sought-after pianist Sholto Kynoch in songs encompassing Fauré and Schumann, together with new compositions.

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Christopher Cope, The Holst Society: There’s more to Holst than just The Planets!

Saturday 6 July, 4.30pm

Holst specialist Christopher Cope will lead us through an exploration of Holst’s extensive output, revealing much more than just The Planets.

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Armonico Consort & Baroque Players: Purcell, The Fairy Queen

Saturday 6 July, 7.30pm

Conductor: Christopher Monks, Artistic Director. Narrated by Oz Clarke OBE, The Fairy Queen is an opera combining elements of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with a sequence of musical masques. The result is an enchanting fairy-tale fantasy.

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Sarah Leonard, soprano / Stephen Dickinson, piano

Sunday 7 July, 3.00pm

An afternoon of songs by Elgar, Holst/Wolfe, Delius, and Fauré; with a world première of Without Words by Stephen Dickinson. Introductory talk on the Holst/Wolfe work by Philippa Tudor CBE.

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Choir of King’s College London & English Chamber Orchestra

Sunday 7 July, 6.00pm

Joseph Fort directs Holst’s rarely-performed First Choral Symphony, a setting of verses by John Keats, in a world première of a new realisation of this compelling work.

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Choral workshop with VOCES8

Friday 12 July, 2.30pm

A unique opportunity to join with leading vocal ensemble VOCES8 to rehearse Gustav Holst’s choral work O God Beyond All Praising. Only available as an add-on to tickets for tonight's concert.

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VOCES8: Draw on Sweet Night

Friday 12 July, 7.30pm

Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble VOCES8’s programme will range from the Venetian Renaissance to contemporary American cross-genre work, and also celebrate the music of Gustav Holst.

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Thaxted Live!

Saturday 13 July, 2.00-6.00pm

In the spirit of Gustav Holst, who championed all musicians whether amateur or professional, we invite you to join us in his beloved surroundings in Thaxted.

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Iyad Sughayer, piano, with Armand Djikoloum, oboe

Saturday 13 July, 7.30pm

Our featured artist Iyad Sughayer takes to the stage for this recital where he is joined in the second half by oboist Armand Djikoloum - nominated as a Rising Star Artist in 2022 by Classic FM.

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Thaxted Ghost Walk

Saturday 13 July, 10.00-11.00pm

Don’t miss the chance for encounters with night-time Thaxted; the event was a sell out success in last year’s Festival Extras.

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Family Event at Saffron Walden Museum

Sunday 14 July, 3.00pm

Sirinu: Sir Goward the Coward. Join us with the whole family at Saffron Walden Museum as Sirinu bring to life the tale of Sir Goward the Coward and the Feasty Beasty in music and dance, with their early-music instruments.

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Closing Night Concert: London Mozart Players

Sunday 14 July, 6.00pm

Our 2024 Festival closes with Elgar’s Serenade for Strings, Holst’s St Paul’s Suite, Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis and Dvořák’s Serenade for Strings.

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Programme Voucher

Throughout Season

Programmes for individual concerts will be on sale at our events. If you are attending several concerts, why not purchase our Season Programme Voucher for just £15, which will entitle you to one programme for each of the concerts you attend? Please display your voucher to our programme sellers at each event to claim your programme.

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“[The Tippett Quartet] concert as part of the 2023 Thaxted Festival revealed a group of musicians of profound interpretative depth, and capable of traversing a wide range of repertoire.”
Colin Clarke, Classical Explorer
“A positively life-enhancing performance of Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love in English with reduced ensemble by Wild Arts…”
Colin Clarke, Classical Explorer
“The performance was a joy … and the quartet brought out its sense of both structural and linear perfection.” Holst’s Phantasy Quartet Op 36 performed by the Tippett Quartet.
Colin Clarke, Classical Explorer
“The Tippett Quartet and Emma Abbate have performed Schumann’s Piano Quintet together many times. On this occasion they combined flawless execution with instinctive – and utterly engaging – musicianship.”
Claire Seymour, in Seen and Heard International.
“…this was a wonderfully enjoyable and engaging performance that really punched above its weight. The audience in Thaxted clearly loved it and were fully engaged, whilst this experienced reviewer was carried away as well.”
Wild Art’s production of The Elixir of Love, reviewed by Robert Hugill in Planet Hugill
“2 terrific concerts I heard with London Mozart Players.”
Thaxted Festival concertgoer
“I think Gustav is smiling down to see how his memory and that of his best friend and colleague Ralph Vaughan Williams are honoured by the expertly played pieces they both composed.”
Thaxted Festival concertgoer
“It's always the variety and quality which keeps me coming back.”
Thaxted Festival concertgoer
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