14 concerts, 2 weekends, 8 venues

A total of 85 performers appeared at the festival, including the début of the Festival Choir, drawn from local singers, and the Festival Orchestra, from London’s finest players. We played music by 52 composers, including works by living composers John Barber (a world première), Huw Watkins and Judith Weir.

We added five new venues – the magnificent church at Stoke by Nayland, the wonderfully atmospheric Dedham Church, the warm, light and comfortable Fordham Church, the intimate Lawford Church, and the lovely Girling Room at the Minories in Colchester. WE returned to favourite venues Abberton, Boxted,  East Mersea and Fingringhoe.

The performers were Simon Blendis, James Boyd, Maggie Cole, Sebastian Comberti, Simon Crawford-Phillips, Amanda Forbes, Keri Fuge, Julia Gooding, Stephanie Gonley, Katharine Gowers, Caryl Hughes, Dominic Harlan, Orlando Jopling, Richard Lester, Roger Montgomery playing Britten’s Serenade, Aidan Oliver and Philharmonia Voices, Tom Poster, Matthew Sharp, Rebecca Sharp and Callum Thorpe.


An extended education project with Dominic Harlan, involving 120 children from four schools creating and performing their own compositions. Many thanks to Liz Pilkington for helping with organisation.

Festival Artist

Many thanks to our Festival Artist James Dodds


Zélie and Orlando Jopling, Harry Anderson, Adrian Biggs, Lindsay Wilson, Melanie Wright, Malcome and Judy Kimmance, Lyn Rodley, Jane Gregson (venue manager for Stoke by Nayland), Douglas Pike and Jeremy Carter.


Arts Council England
The RVW Trust
The Essex Community Foundation
Tanner Trust