Friday 20 May - Sunday 29 May 2016

Bath International Music Festival 2015 – Programme Announcement

February 2, 2015






Bath International Music Festival 2015 celebrates its 67th year combining a fine classical programme with the best in contemporary jazz, world and folk.



  • Pianist STEVEN OSBORNE, Festival Artist in Residence for 2015.
  • Special concert from South African jazz legend HUGH MASEKELA.
  • JOHN BUTT performs Bach Goldberg Variations and directs a second all Bach concert with Gramophone Award Winners THE DUNEDIN CONSORT.
  • HOT SARDINES – New York hot jazz hits Bath.
  • World famous organist THOMAS TROTTER in recital in Bath Abbey.
  • STILE ANTICO, Early music vocal ensemble with a programme built around Byrd’s five-part mass in Bath Abbey.
  • Jazz composer MIKE WESTBROOK performing Glad Day, his settings of the poems of William Blake.
  • Rising star of traditional English folksong EMILY PORTMAN premiering a new collaboration with SAM SWEENEY of Bellowhead.
  • A special event with WILL GREGORY, composer, keyboard player and co-founder of
  • WILLARD WHITE performing Gershwin in Bath’s biggest venue The Forum.
  • BBC Young Musician of the Year 2012 cellist LAURA VAN DER HEIJDEN performing with THE EUROPEAN UNION CHAMBER ORCHESTRA.
  • PARTY IN THE CITY: hundreds of musicians playing in more than 40 venues in the centre of Bath.

Artistic planning for the 2015 Bath International Music Festival is being supported by James Waters from Festivals and Events International in association Serious with working with the Chief Executive of Bath Festivals, Belinda Kidd.


James Waters of FEI says, “This year’s classical programme aspires to build on the great traditions of the Bath International Music Festival.  The festival has always had serious music making of the highest standard at its heart and this has dictated our artistic choices.   We are delighted to have attracted some of the world’s finest soloists and groups.  There is a balance of today and tomorrow with Artist in Residence Steven Osborne, vocal legend Willard White and star organist Thomas Trotter juxtaposed with young stars of the future and we present prizewinning ensembles such as Stile Antico, The Cremona Quartet and the Dunedin Consort.  We aim to create exciting and stimulating experiences such as presenting Bach’s Goldberg Variations and Messiaen’s Vingt Regards sur l’enfant Jésus on the same day.  We very much hope that its audiences have as much pleasure listening to the festival as we have had programming it”.




  • Festival Artist in Residence STEVEN OSBORNE in 3 concerts plays: Messiaen: Vingt Regards sur l’enfant Jésus; Rachmaninov Etudes Tableaux; Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition and a Brahms programme with JEAN JOHNSON on clarinet and PHILIP HIGHAM on cello.


  • RED NOTE Scotland’s leading contemporary music ensemble in a special performance of Renaissance and contemporary music for brass at Cleveland Pools, the UK’s only surviving Georgian lido.


  • EUROPEAN UNION CHAMBER ORCHESTRA and 2012 BBC Young Musician of the Year, cellist LAURA VAN DER HEIJDEN perform Mozart’s Divertimento K138; Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C; Elgar: Serenade for Strings and Respighi: Suite from Ancient airs and dances of Rome


  • The CREMONA QUARTET, renowned for their recordings, perform an all Beethoven programme.




Ji Liu the London based, Shanghai born virtuoso pianist with a programme that includes Busoni, Beethoven, Liszt/Gounod and Gershwin/Earl.


Amy Harman, principal Bassoon of the Philharmonia Orchestra at the age of 24, offers a programme of works by major composers – Boismortier, Liszt, Schumann and Reynaldo Hahn with charming French arrangements.


Michael Petrov: this brilliant young cellist plays Schubert Sonata in A minor, D.821 Arpeggione and Cesar Franck Sonata in A.


Bartozs Woroch one of Europe’s most exciting young violin players plays Bach, Hindsmith and Prokofiev.


  • World famous organist THOMAS TROTTER gives a recital inthe atmospheric surrounds of BATH ABBEY. Programme includes Messiaen L’Ascension; JS Bach: Prelude & Fugue in C BWV 547; Saint-Saens: Fantasie in E flat; Dukas: The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (arr Trotter) and Dupré: Symphonie-Passion


  • Leading Harpsichord player and Bach authority JOHN BUTT performs the Bach Goldberg Variations and directs a second all Bach concert with THE DUNEDIN CONSORT


  • STILE ANTICO present an irresistible programme of Renaissance masterpieces built around Byrd’s mighty five-part mass, in the glorious setting of Bath Abbey.


  • GEORGIAN PLEASURES: a presentation of music from the Georgian era amidst the Capability Brown landscape of Newton Park near Bath, by the Vauxhall Players in collaboration with Bath Spa University.


  • IFORD ARTS presents Violetta’s Party a concert curated and accompanied on piano by OLIVER GOOCH with a quartet of its current and future stars: ALINKA KOZARI, soprano, CHRISTOPHER TURNER, tenor; MARIANNE VIDAL, mezzo and SZYMON WACH bass baritone.


  • An opportunity to hear Schubert’s music for violin and piano with PETER MANNING on violin and RENATO BELSADONNA on piano


  • BATH PHILHARMONIA and BATH CAMERATA with GWENETH ANN JEFFERS, soprano and SIR WILLARD WHITE, bass baritone, perform Dvorak’s New World Symphony No 9 and Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess Concert Suite, conducted by JASON THORNTON




  • THE HOT SARDINES perform at Bath International Music Festival as part of a UK tour. Take a blustery brass front line, add salty stride piano in the timeless image of Fats Waller and a front woman with the attitude and style of a 30s cabaret diva and you have THE HOT SARDINES in a seashell. And that’s not to mention the tap dancer. See Early Booking for this event here.


  • EMILY PORTMAN & SAM SWEENEY in a new collaboration. PORTMAN, fresh from her win for Best Original Song at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards performs with SAM SWEENEY from Bellowhead.


  • Songlines Music Award winners CATRIN FINCH and SECKOU KEITA: Catrin, a leading ambassador for Welsh music and former harpist to the Prince of Wales performs with Kora player SECKOU KEITA from Senegal, one of the leading musicians of his generation.


  • HOUSE GOSPEL: The late Frankie Knuckles called house music “church for people who have fallen from grace”.  HOUSE GOSPEL CHOIR first hit the stage at last year’s Glastonbury with their thrilling fusion of house anthems and gospel that you can dance to.


  • MIKE WESTBROOK – GLAD DAY: MIKE WESTBROOK works across a multitude of genres from opera to jazz. This is a rare opportunity to hear his settings of William Blake’s powerful poems.


  • GWYNETH HERBERT a singer-songwriter who continues to redefine and defy expectations, She has one foot in the jazz world and one somewhere in the future and writes beautiful melodies with a poet’s grasp of the world around her.


  • MATTHEW SHIPP the leading American free-jazz pioneer performs with MICHAEL BISIO a bassist and rising figure in the American jazz scene.


  • ORPHY ROBINSON /BLACK TOP. Vibes player and multi-instrumentalist ROBINSON and keyboard player PAT THOMAS are joined by harmonica player PHILIP ACHILLE. They draw on their Afro-Caribbean roots to explore the intersection between live instruments and lo-fi technology.


  • HUGH MASEKELA creates an instant party with his band, leading from vocals and flugelhorn “like a South African Louis Armstrong” (Guardian). His voice has long spoken out in the struggle for freedom, while his soaring horn has echoes of township jazz, hip-hop and funk.

A screening of this 1924 silent film with live music played by WILL GREGORY, one half of electro-pop band GOLDFRAPP and TONY ORRELL his long-term collaborator.


REBELLO brings the adventurous virtuosity, which has put him in the UK’s top jazz flight since the early 1990’s Brit Jazz revival to his first-ever two-piano partnership with GWILYM SIMCOCK, one of the most gifted pianists and imaginative composers on the British scene.


Masters of Tuvan throat singing from Siberia, this award-winning group have toured internationally, astonishing audiences with a vocal technique allowing one singer to produce multiple pitches simultaneously.


  • MOLOTOV JUKEBOX: this explosive London six-piece creates an original, Tropical-Gypsy-Dance sound with accordion backed up by violin, powerful Latin trumpet, and a pounding rhythm section.


  • PLUS a series of events at community venues near Bath, including rising folk stars JESS VINCENT, JENNIFER CROOK, and PHIL KING plus an evening of jazz dance to live music with UK Lindy Hop Champions HOPPIN’ MAD.


Full programme to view online from 9 March


Patrons booking:        Tuesday 10 March

Friends booking:        Tuesday 17 March

General booking:        Tuesday 24 March


To become a Friend or Patron and benefit from Advanced Booking call 01225 462231.





Bath International Music Festival, 15-26 May 2015

Bath International Music Festival takes place in venues in and around Bath from 15-26 May 2015. Concerts are individually ticketed and prices range from £12- £28. All tickets are available from Bath Box Office on 01225 463362 and online

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