3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Dorset Magazine today click here

What’s on at Sherborne Abbey Festival 2017

PUBLISHED: 11:33 26 April 2017 | UPDATED: 14:40 26 April 2017

Tenebrae perform choral music from Renassiance through to the present in the Abbey

Tenebrae perform choral music from Renassiance through to the present in the Abbey


From Beethoven to gypsy jazz and Jane Austen to the Tour de France, this year’s Sherborne Abbey Festival is an eclectic mix of music and performance

With a clutch of awards for Tourism Event of the Year and a stellar line-up of world class performers you know the Sherborne Abbey Music Festival will be something special. The Festival, which runs from 28 April – 2 May, is also unique in that 70% of all performances are free entry, making it one of Dorset’s most accessible music events.

Now in its 18th season, this year’s programme is packed with over 25 exciting and adventurous performances. The acclaimed vocal ensemble Tenebrae celebrate some of the finest choral works from the Renaissance through to the present day, in A Hymn of Heavenly Beauty. Acclaimed violinist, classic BRIT winner and former BBC Young Musician of the Year, Nicola Benedetti, performs Bold & Beautiful Beethoven, accompanied by the Iuventus Chamber Orchestra led by Ruth Rogers.

In complete contrast is Parisian Moods at the Big School Room at Sherborne School. In the first half Gypsy Carnivals’ soaring violin, raunchy guitars atop Parisian swinging beats means that no toe will be left untapped in this colourful homage to Django Reinhardt, Stéphane Grapelli and the hedonistic spirit of the Gypsy Jazz age. The second half features Gabrielle Ducomble’s fresh jazz spin on iconic chansons by Edith Piaf, Michel Legrand, Serge Gainsbourg and Astor Piazzolla.

Clarinet Goes to Town features the brilliant Emma Johnson, another BBC Young Musician of the Year, paying tribute to Sidney Bechet, Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw.

Archers’ fans are in for a rare treat as Emerald O’Hanrahan presents Jane Austen at Home. Better known as Emma Grundy in The Archers, Emerald’s one-woman show features Jane Austen’s words taken from her letters, poetry and novels.

No music festival at Sherborne Abbey would be complete without a great organ concert. Stepping up to the pipes is Robert Sharpe, Organist of York Minster. Robert will showcase Sherborne Abbey’s magnificent Tickell organ with Sounds Majestic - a programme of music by 19th and 20th century French composers, and J. S. Bach.

Local young musicians, bands and singers have a major role to play in this award-winning festival and genres include jazz, barbershop, madrigal, choral and chamber ensembles from Sherborne School, Sherborne Girls and Leweston. While the Gryphon School, with Bournemouth Sinfonietta, performs Vive la Vélorution! This was commissioned to celebrate the grand depart of the 2014 Tour de France from Yorkshire.

A much anticipated highlight is the performance by Sherborne Festival Chorus, a community-based choir of 140 people. Together with the Sherborne Chamber Choir and Chameleon Arts Orchestra, they will perform Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius featuring international tenor Toby Spence, who performed the role of Gerontius in the 2015 Proms with Sir Simon Rattle and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra.

Festival Director, John Baker, summed up this year’s line up: “From home-grown talent to international musical stars Sherborne Abbey Music Festival is an exciting celebration of contrasts in music and performance.”

For the full programme and to buy tickets visit sherborneabbeyfestival.org or call 01935 815341. Follow on Twitter @abbeyfestival


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Dorset visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Dorset staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Dorset account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Friday, September 14, 2018

Follow in the footsteps of the Romans on this lovely walk that takes in rare habitat, ancient woodland and glorious views

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

This challenging coastal walk rewards your efforts with spectacular views along the Jurassic Coast

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Marine photographer Steve Belasco shares some very special wildlife moments

Read more
Wednesday, September 5, 2018

TravelSupermarket has uncovered the top 25 most popular UK beaches on Instagram after analysing hashtags used for over 1,100 beaches and Bournemouth comes out on top

Read more
Monday, September 3, 2018

From a harvest festival to a guided tour of a botanical collection used for making perfume, there is plenty happening in Dorset’s gardens this month

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Ride + Stride, Dorset Historic Churches Trust’s annual fundraising event, is a great way to explore and support some of the county’s more unusual places of worship

Read more
Monday, August 6, 2018

This easy level walks takes in an ancient village described as The Mother of Bournemouth and Throop Mill of the River Stour

Read more
Monday, August 6, 2018

Dorset villages are some of the most beautiful in England – think winding lanes, thatched cottages and a cosy pub or welcoming tea room. We suggest ten of the prettiest villages to visit in the county

Read more
Friday, July 27, 2018

Martin Clunes and his family have called West Dorset home for over two decades. Here he shares some of their favourite local places

Read more

From paddling on the Frome to admiring one of the best vistas in Dorset, Adam Lee-Potter’s beloved home town just keeps getting better and better

Read more
Monday, July 16, 2018

Butterflies, buzzards and beautiful views sum up this lovely summer walk around Piddletrenthide and Plush Hill

Read more
Sunday, July 8, 2018

Visit Dorset reveal their favourite lesser-known local beaches to explore if you want to get off the beaten track this summer

Read more
Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Anne Brunner-Ellis takes her horse on holiday to a B&B in Ashmore where they both enjoy three glorious days of exploring the local countryside as well as a spot of pampering

Read more

From supper on the beach to a vibrant live music scene, Kate Shaw reveals why her family love living in this award-winning coastal town

Read more
A+ South & South West

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search