Launch of arts festival unveils an impressive programme of music

Classical musicians Andrew Bernardi, Maria Marchant and Johnny Few with Nicholin Choi. Picture by Graham Franks Photography - www.grahamfrankspics.co.uk SUS-180130-122543001
Classical musicians Andrew Bernardi, Maria Marchant and Johnny Few with Nicholin Choi. Picture by Graham Franks Photography - www.grahamfrankspics.co.uk SUS-180130-122543001

An impressive programme of classical music, jazz and opera was unveiled at the launch of the 18th Shipley Arts Festival on Sunday evening.

Creator and director, violinist Andrew Bernardi, was joined by festival friends, sponsors and guests at Sedgwick Park House near Horsham, hosted by owner Clare Davison, as he highlighted the many treats to come for music lovers.

Among the 27 events will be two concerts at the Blue Idol Meeting House at Coolham to celebrate the life and legacy of Quaker William Penn, marking 300 years since his death; world premieres of new music by composers Roderick Williams and Malcolm Singer; an evening of jazz violin in Brooks Green, plus classical recitals at Knepp Castle, Warnham Park and the Nyetimber vineyard in West Chiltington.

The festival begins in April with a dinner with musical interludes at South Lodge, Lower Beeding, in aid of the Chestnut Tree Hospice followed by the Bernardi Music Group and international recorder player Michala Petri at St Andrew’s Church, Nuthurst.

Andrew said he wants to keep “extending the repertoire” and “crossing all boundaries” with this year’s music and venues. He added that the festival “is about a community we are building”.

He thanked and praised sponsors Toovey’s, Kreston Reeves, NFU Mutual, Nyetimber, and Rossana for their support.

Guests at the launch were treated to music from the young players of the Gifted and Talented String Academy plus Andrew and his professional colleagues.

For more information visit https://www.bmglive.com/shipley-arts-festival/