Presteigne Festival

The Presteigne Festival of Music and the Arts is an annual summer classical music festival in Powys, Wales, UK, right next to the English border, featuring events in both countries. It was founded in 1983 by a local team including founding artistic director Adrian Williams, Lynden and Gareth Rees Roberts, Philip Woodhall and Adrian Vernon Fish. The first concert was on 18 September 1983. (The first festival ran from 18-25 September, but it currently runs over the holiday weekend at the end of August each year.)

The tenth anniversary 'Open Borders' Festival commissioned twelve new works, one from each of the countries in the European Community at the time.

Since 1993 the festival has been run by British conductor George Vass.  Its first non-British composers-in-residence were PÄ“teris Vasks in 2006 and Peter Sculthorpe in 2007.


A selection of articles about Presteigne Festival

Classical music news. April 2024 Newsletter - Our April 2024 PDF newsletter has just been published, featuring some music festivals around the world this year

Classical music news - The Innocent Fields - Recent items of interest, including the Presteigne Festival, Jonathan McPhee adapting Wagner, Nick Hely-Hutchinson's Perfect Pitch podcast, the Stabat Mater music calendar and a study of unusual vocal techniques

Classical music news. Obituary - Hilary Tann (1947-2023)

Classical music news. September 2020 Newsletter - 'A Quiet Logic', Classical Music Daily's September 2020 Newsletter, has just been published, along with an assortment of short news items

Profile. Connecting the Natural and Human Worlds - Ona Jarmalavičiūtė talks to the Welsh composer Hilary Tann

Ensemble. Very Effective - Igor Stravinsky's 'The Soldier's Tale' at the Presteigne Festival, reviewed by Keith Bramich

CD Spotlight. Avowedly Definitive - John McCabe plays his own 'Tenebrae', heard by Howard Smith. '... imbued with anger and monumental in both structure and outlook ...'

Profile. Emotional contours - Ian Wilson, featured composer at the 2005 Presteigne Festival, talks to Robert Hugill

Ensemble. Coming of age - Keith Bramich at the twenty-first Presteigne Festival of Music and the Arts

Ensemble - Sublimely sensual. Roderic Dunnett looks back on a stunning young clarinettist's début and the music of one of Britain's most rapturous modern composers, both featured at the 2001 Deal Festival

National ambition - Keith Bramich visits Wales for the opening concert of the 2001 Presteigne Festival

Presteigne notes - Further news from the continuing Presteigne Festival in Wales

Presteigne notes - News from the continuing Presteigne Festival in Wales

Pianos and Pianists - Presteigne Pianists -

McCabe in Conversation - Presteigne Festival composer in residence John McCabe talks to the Chief Music Critic of the Birmingham Post, Christopher Morley

A vacation in Welsh border country - Keith Bramich introduces our six day visit to the Presteigne Festival of Music and the Arts

Site Seeing - Music festivals revisited, including information about Music & Vision's visit to the Presteigne Festival, which begins on Thursday