February 2021 Newsletter


February 2021 Newsletter

Welcome to Thaxted Festival 2021. We are so looking forward to hosting live music again in Thaxted Church this summer, and we have an exciting range of artists lined up for you from across the musical spectrum. Please read on for further details.

Thaxted Festival 2021 will take place over two long weekends: Thursday 24 June to Sunday 27, and Thursday 1 July to Sunday 4 July. During this time we will present nine concerts from leading artists. We will have reduced audience capacity and smaller-scale ensembles, to ensure appropriate distancing throughout all our events.

While we were not able to hold our full season in 2020, we were pleased to work with colleagues at Saffron Hall to hold two highly successful socially-distanced autumn events there with pianist Martin James Bartlett on 10 October; one performance especially for our Thaxted Music Lovers, and a second for the general public. Martin much enjoyed playing to a live audience in the UK for the first time in many months, and our audiences were able once again to enjoy the thrill of live performances.

The generous support of our Thaxted Music Lovers, and the understanding of our artists throughout 2020 have enabled us to emerge into 2021 ready to launch again into Festival activity in robust shape. We will be building on our established reputation for presenting a world-class musical experience, and for introducing our audiences to the best of emerging young talent. 2021 will include new faces as well as return visits from some of our best-loved performers and ensembles. Our offering will as usual range from classical instrumental soloists to chamber music, choral and vocal music, jazz and popular music, and some fusion between styles.

Our line-up of leading artists includes leading chamber ensemble The Heath Quartet, exciting young vocal ensemble Voces8, stunning young cellist Laura van de Heijden, jazz from the Darius Brubeck Quartet, and the return of Robin Walker to celebrate our 200th Lincoln Organ anniversary recital.

We are delighted to renew our association with the renowned London Mozart Players, led by piano maestro Howard Shelley. Also joining us will be vocalists Opus Anglicanum, with piano virtuoso Jason Rebello.

Our new Festival patron, broadcaster and actor Zeb Soanes, returns with Selina Cadell to perform Walton’s Façade and Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, with the Covent Garden Sinfonia. The 2021 Festival ends with pianist Christopher Weston performing together with five leading members of the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House.

Tickets will be on general sale by early May, with priority booking for members of Thaxted Music Lovers from early April. Our full programme, detailed arrangements for booking, and the configuration of our venue will all be announced by the end of March.

We need to be doing some things differently during 2021, as you will understand, and the arrangements above are part of this. Already you will notice our new look, which we have been working on during lockdown in 2020, which will help us to maximise our online presence and reach the widest possible audience. We are able to build on our successful experience with online booking and ticketing in recent years so that we can provide the most efficient service possible to purchasers. This will include digital delivery of tickets (in the past known as ‘print-at-home’, but we hope that printing can be avoided as far as possible).

Things that won’t change include our warm Thaxted welcome, our relaxed atmosphere, and our widely anticipated offerings of home-made cakes and various liquid refreshments, even though these may need to be spaced out in the open air around our venue. Perhaps we can even dare to hope for a repeat of the weather we have all enjoyed in recent summers.

The way to stay in touch with all our announcements and developments is to sign up for our Newsletter which we issue regularly.

Members of Thaxted Music Lovers receive more frequent updates, and enjoy priority booking periods and other benefits.

Follow our posts for more background, insights and up-to-date news of our programme and artists on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

We look forward to welcoming you to Thaxted Festival 2021!

Peter Donovan
Chairman, Thaxted Festival Foundation
Registered Charity 296329