SAVE THE DATES FOR OUR NEXT WINCHFIELD FESTIVAL IN 2023:

Friday 23 June - Sat 1 July 2023

The Winchfield Festival Team are busy planning an inspiring programme of music for 2023 to include renowned classical musicians and other genres for different musical tastes.  You can subscribe to our Newsletter and receive details of dates and musicians as they are booked for 2023. 

 

September 2022: Sophie Rosa thrilled audiences with two Concerts in aid of Ukraine

Sophie Rosa gave two wonderful concerts on consecutive evenings in St Mary’s Church covering the entire works for unaccompanied violin by J S Bach. These extraordinary pieces (consisting of three Sonatas and three Partitas) were ground-breaking in their day, and still represent the peak of writing for solo violin.

Sophie played the works with an astonishing assurance and virtuosity that carried the audience effortlessly with her on the journey through the music. And she strengthened the bond with the audience by providing a short but fascinating introduction to each sonata and partita, explaining for instance how Bach was able to write polyphonic music (including complex fugues) on what is basically a monophonic instrument. Sophie also gave examples of things to look out for in each of the works, and this helped the audience to enjoy the music.

St Mary’s church provided a perfect setting for this music. It was wonderful to watch Sophie tackle to complexities of the music standing alone under the chancel arch. And the violin sounded breath-taking in the space of the church – full-bodied with just the right amount of reverberation.

The late Queen Elizabeth’s death was announced at the interval of the first concert and this historic event will shape all our memories of both concerts. It was generally agreed that the Bach unaccompanied sonatas and partitas were perfectly fitted to the solemn occasion. The second concert started with Sophie playing the National Anthem followed by a minute’s silence. After that Sophie played the second Partita in D minor which ends with the famous D minor Chaconne – a huge movement written by Bach to commemorate the death of his mother. It was perfect music for the occasion.

We are very pleased to have welcomed Sophie to play at Winchfield and, based on her brilliance, we look forward to watching her career blossom over the coming years. The concerts raised £1200 for humanitarian aid for Ukraine.

 

March 2022: Hampshire Young Musicians thrill audience with a brilliant Recital Evening 

‘Friends of St Mary’s Winchfield’ hosted a magical evening of music on Saturday 26 March 2022, performed by some of Hampshire’s most advanced students, as part of the Hampshire Music Service 21/22 concert season. Their inspirational music making thrilled the audience with a dynamic programme showcasing instruments played on harp, euphonium, flute and piccolo, the marimba and ending with the Hampshire County Youth String Quartet. It was a pleasure and a privilege to see and hear these young students play at such an advanced level and to see their confidence grow in front of an unknown audience.

This concert was presented in association with The Friends of St Mary’s Winchfield, a secular organisation created by local residents to support the fabric of the beautiful Grade 1 listed church and churchyard https://www.stmaryswinchfield.org.uk

 The Winchfield Festival, as part of our Outreach Programme, has partnered with Hampshire Music Service and over the years has invested and provided support for young children and students, enriching their learning and music making. Some of the students will have a chance to participate in concerts and masterclasses during the next Festival week in June 2023.

 

August 2021: Wonderful Winchfield Festival - An Appreciation

Would it happen or would it have to be cancelled?  Well, one week after restrictions on events were lifted, the Winchfield Festival made a happy return to ‘live music’ and thrilled audiences for 8 nights in August. Postponed from 2020 and with all possible precautions in place, some thought that classical music would not work in the Festival Marquee but they were wrong, it did, with excellent sound reproduction.

And so, audiences were able to share the joy of the musicians playing their first live concert for 18 months. It made for a very special atmosphere.

‘To be able to enjoy live music performed by top-class musicians in the stunning setting of Winchfield Festival, and to be made to feel so very welcome by the Festival team, is an experience I will remember for a long time. I was particularly struck by the warmth and enthusiasm exuded by the audience themselves, directly reflecting the culture of the whole event. Winchfield Festival has a regular, loyal audience for a good reason!’  Sally Richardson, Director, Tashmina Artists

There were concerts for all musical tastes, and better still the opportunity to hear and explore new musical forms. Alongside the Festival a full ‘outreach programme’ for children in local schools is enabled by the generous support of our Friends and Benefactors.

Details, photos and videos of past Festivals can be found at www.winchfieldfestival.org/previous-festivals.html and we are busy preparing to add the details of this year’s Festival to that page.

We are already planning for the next Winchfield Festival in 2023, so please keep a lookout for details on our News page.  You can always subscribe to our newsletter so that we can keep you in touch.

 The garden concerts in September 2020 were ‘pure delight’

On a sunny September afternoon, thirty lucky people at each of two concerts, safely checked in according to Covid-19 protocol and properly spaced, enjoyed an open air concert performed by Huw Wiggin on saxophone and Oliver Wass on harp.  Set in a private garden hosted by Tristram and Kirsty Cary, ‘live’ music once more filled the air at a quintessentially English open air concert.   ‘All proceeds went to support the musicians’ said Tristram, Chairman of Winchfield Festival, ‘and they expressed their delight at being able to perform ‘live’ for us.'

Huw Wiggin commented: ‘It was an amazing experience to perform to a live audience again. Oliver and I had a wonderful time, in beautiful surroundings and the atmosphere was so special. Thank you so much to Winchfield Festival and Tristram and Kirsty Cary for hosting the concert. Looking forward to Winchfield Festival 2021!’  Huw Wiggin, Commonwealth Musician of the Year in 2014 and Professor of Saxophone at the Royal Academy of Music performed a varied programme with Oliver Wass, the first harpist ever to win the Guildhall Gold Medal. 

We don't have a video of our Winchfield concerts but here they are playing at Breinton during summer 2020:

 

Photography by David Hogg from Horizon Imaging


If you haven't already done so, why not sign up to our newsletter here and we'll send you more news of our future concerts.

Winchfield Festival is a Registered Charity No. 1079073, in England.

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