The 2017 IAO Music Festival will be held in the historic university city of Oxford – “city of dreaming spires”.
Oxford is home to the country’s oldest university and its colleges and university buildings boast a wealth of wonderful architecture, much of which is built of a particularly beautiful Cotswold stone.
The Ashmolean Museum is the world’s first university museum and dates back to 1677; it reopened in 2009 after a major redevelopment. Home to probably more organs per square metre than any other UK city except Cambridge, Oxford is an obvious venue for an organists’ festival.
The Festival will include visits to six different colleges, with recitals at The Queen’s College (Frobenius ii, 1965), Keble College (Tickell iv, 2011), Merton College (Dobson iii, 2013), St John’s College (Aubertin iii, 2008), Exeter College (Walker ii, 1994), and New College (Grant, Degens and Bradbeer iii, 1969).
The Festival will also include a half day visit to Blenheim Palace where we will have a guided tour of the Palace and hear the famous organ in the Long Library (Willis, iv, 1891). There will also be a day trip to Eton College where we be given a guided tour of the College and see and hear some of the college’s collection of five organs, including the organ in College Chapel (Hill iv, 1885).
Oxford is home to the oldest purpose built music room in the country, so we will spend a day at the Holywell Music Room, where we will hear, amongst other events, a piano recital and a concert by the Edington String Quartet. The Festival Dinner will be in the Hall of Exeter College which dates back to 1618, and will be preceded by a service of Choral Evensong with a choir directed by Matthew Martin.
Artists performing include Dame Gillian Weir (Masterclass & Interview), David Goode (Organ), Matthew Martin (Organ & Choral Director), Benjamin Nicholas (Organ), Peter King (Organ), Robert Quinney (Organ), John Reid (Piano), and the Edington Quartet.
An outline of events can be found at http://iao.org.uk/newsevents/festival/
Bookings can be made via http://www.ticketsoxford.com/whats-on/?promotor=1079
The full five-day season ticket is available priced £179 (with the Festival Dinner costing an additional £47.50). Full-time student tickets are £99. From June individual event tickets will be on sale.