Online alternative to cancelled Presteigne festival

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DESPITE the fact that this year’s Presteigne Winter Festival Weekend was sadly cancelled due to coronavirus, organisers are keen to point out that Presteigne Digital events online will be running as an alternative for the rest of the year.

Due to the continued and unwelcome presence of Covid-19 in all our lives, the 2020 Winter Festival Weekend, which was due to get underway this coming weekend, has been cancelled. But in their autumn newsletter, festival chiefs hope that news regarding Presteigne Digital provides some consolation.

We’ve been amazed at the number of people who have viewed Presteigne Digital events online. The specially made high definition films showcase fabulous performances from the Carducci Quartet, Amy Dickson, Christopher Good, Clare Hammond, Tim Horton, Mathilde Milwidsky, Bradley Smith, Oliver Wass and members of Nova Music Opera, together with readings from leading writers Peter J Conradi, Nicholas Murray and Fiona Sampson.

The Carducci Quartet’s repertoire includes commissions from Martin Butler, Amelia Clarkson, Ninfea Cruttwell-Reade (Presteigne Festival ‘Evolve’ composer), Robin Haigh, Tarik O’Regan, Joseph Phibbs and Emma-Ruth Richards, as well as a range of contemporary British pieces, together with masterworks from Beethoven, Britten, Janacek and Schubert.

Presteigne Digital content is free-to-view via, please make sure you enjoy the content before it disappears at the end of the year.

We also hope you will want to donate to our Festival Futures Fund via Just Giving – there are several donate buttons on the website.

In other news, BBC Radio 3 is broadcasting a ‘Focus on Welsh Festivals’ lunchtime series next month. The Presteigne Festival is represented with a piano recital from Clare Hammond to be broadcast at 1pm on Friday, December 11, live from St David’s Hall, Cardiff. Clare will present an eclectic mix of music by Lili Boulanger, Robert Peate, Rachmaninov, Edmund Finnis and Gershwin.

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Normally, we would have published an overview of the 2021 festival due to take place next August by this point in the year, but with continued uncertainty as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is taking far longer than expected to finalise plans. We hope to give you more details in the Christmas newsletter next month, but at least our 2021 festival dates are confirmed – August 26-31. save them in your diary.

Lastly, our friends at the Brecon Baroque Festival have been hard at work, having produced a fabulous series of videos focusing on a new ensemble arrangement of J S Bach’s Golberg Variations by Chad Kelly and featuring the festival’s artistic director, Rachel Podger.

For more details of the Brecon Baroque and to purchase tickets, visit



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