Diocesan press releases

World class line up heads for top music festival

The array of talent at this year’s North Wales International Music Festival between September 17 and October 1 at St Asaph Cathedral is being hailed as one of the best ever.

One of the main highlights will be the world premiere of renowned composer Paul Mealor’s Symphony No. 2 ‘Sacred Places’. Paul, who was born in St Asaph, unveiled his Symphony No. 1 ‘Passiontide’ at the festival’s launch concert in June, where it was performed by his acclaimed chamber choir at Aberdeen University and the festival’s 2016 orchestra in residence NEW Sinfonia from Wrexham.

This year’s festival will see concert performances by pianists Janina Fialkowska and Iwan Llewelyn Jones, classical guitarist Miloš Karadaglić, Ensemble Cymru, West End star soprano Margaret Preece, the NEW Sinfonia orchestra, violinist Tamsin Waley-Cohen and vocal groups Ex Cathedra, The Vale of Clwyd Singers and the Festival Choir.

Now firmly positioned as the leading classical guitarist of his generation, Miloš Karadaglić continues to top the record charts and delight audiences around the world. The Times said of his latest Beatles album, Blackbird: “It is so elegantly executed, and with such a plaintive quality, that it goes beyond … into something approaching art”.

Janina Fialkowska, one of the world’s greatest living pianists, said “It’s been an ambition of mine to perform in Wales. It’s a land with a reputation for having the best singers and choirs and audiences who really love music.”

Artistic director Ann Atkinson said: “We have a fantastic and varied programme including an Aspire/Inspire concert featuring the Royal harpist, Anne Denholm, as well as pianists Iwan Llewelyn Jones and Siwan Rhys and pupils from Ysgol Glan Clwyd and the Denbighshire Music Co-operative. I am especially looking forward to our Rodgers and Hammerstein night with West End star soprano Margaret Preece, who sang the role of the Mother Abbess in the Sound of Music and has performed in the Phantom of the Opera.”

The festival will also feature piano and vocal masterclasses and a cross-curricular Roald Dahl-themed Education Day with Ensemble Cymru, along with the annual community tour with musicians from Live Music Now Cymru, including the schools and tots concerts at St Asaph Cathedral.

There really is something for everyone at this year’s festival.

To find out more about the North Wales International Music Festival please visit www.nwimf.com or email caroline@nwimf.com. Tickets are available from Cathedral Frames, St Asaph High Street, 01745 582929 or Theatr Clwyd, 01352 701521.