Chipping Campden Music Festival

For this year only the Festival has been moved to September
Over the last two months the Trustees and I have been wrestling with the dilemma of how we can best present this year’s festival. Although the signs are that things are beginning to look more hopefully, it is by no means certain we would be able to operate as usual, with the church full to capacity.
Even if regulations would allow us to proceed in that way, the complete unknown was – how happy would people be sitting very close together in a crowded space? And of course you are even closer to each other in pews than you are in chairs. Also, because of the nature of the building, exiting and re-entering during intervals cannot be done without large bottle necks forming. 
In the end we felt the most satisfactory and only sure way to proceed was to have a socially distanced seating plan, ask most of the artists to shorten their programmes slightly and perform them twice on the same day, once in the afternoon and once in the evening. That way we can give about 300 people per day the chance to attend a ‘live’ concert, seated in a way that the majority, hopefully, will feel very comfortable with, and the slightly shorter concerts remove the need for an interval and all the problems that gives us. NB – The CCFAO programmes have not been shortened and will run for about 75-80 mins. A few of the other programmes will also be played in full, but there will not be an interval in any of the concerts.
Although limiting sales to a maximum of 150 per concert will have a fairly large financial impact, we have decided that, where the programmes have been shortened, we will reduce the cost of tickets for those concerts. We want to extend this gesture of goodwill to everyone as a way of thanking you all for the amazing support you gave us and the musicians over the cancellation of the 2020 festival.                                                                                  
The Brochure & booking form will be available mid-June and Patrons & Friends priority booking periods will open early July. General bookings will open late July.
Meanwhile – If you would like information of how to subscribe to the priority booking schemes please email me and I will send you full details 

You can view the full programme here

If you are not already on our mailing list you can subscribe here.

Charlie Bennett – Artistic Director


About the Festival
The first Chipping Campden Music Festival was held in 2002, since when it has grown to be widely recognised as one of the UK’s leading festivals, with visitors coming from the Americas, Canada, Australia, & New Zealand, as well as from all over the UK, and mainland Europe. The glorious venue of St James’ church has become a favourite with many of the world’s greatest musicians who all look forward to returning to this most beautiful of all the Cotswold towns.

 The Local Area
As well as our prestigious Music Festival & sister organisation the Chipping Campden Literature Festival, the area offers a wealth of other cultural treasures; the RSC is just down the road, and the wonderful gardens of Hidcote and Kiftsgate are nearby. It really is the perfect setting for a long weekend or a fortnight’s holiday in the Cotswolds. Chipping Campden is also one of the most important homes of the Arts and Crafts movement. Fine accommodation at all prices is available, from luxury hotels, lovely B&Bs, traditional Cotswold pubs, and a large selection of self-catering cottages.

Bernard Haitink
“The Chipping Campden Music Festival brings worldclass artists – and also young musicians starting their professional journeys – to a wonderful venue. After a long lifetime as a performer, having the chance to be part of the audience and to hear concerts of outstanding quality in such a setting is the purest joy.”
Alfred Brendel
“I only discovered the joys of Chipping Campden late in my performing career but still relished the opportunity to play in the glorious acoustics of St James’ Church. Since retiring from the concert platform I have returned a number of times to lecture at the music festival and can’t think of many places that rival this most picturesque Cotswold town in late spring.”
Imogen Cooper
"The Festival is in my view, and that of all musicians I know, one of the loveliest in the British summer musical calendar. The audience is knowledgeable, attentive and extremely warm and there is always a sense of occasion. A beautiful piano completes a nigh perfect venue , the whole fuelled by the passionate enthusiasm of Charlie Bennett, whose devotion to quality at all costs is only too rare, and to be treasured.”
Julian Lloyd Webber
“The Chipping Campden Music Festival is a jewel in the crown of British music making. Without compromising on either the choice of musicians or their programmes, Charlie Bennett has created one of the ‘hottest tickets’ in classical music”
Julius Drake
“There are two main reasons we performers love playing at the Chipping Campden International Music Festival. The first is that so much care and thought has gone into the choice of artist and programme by Charlie Bennett - we all know that he really loves the music as much as we do. The other reason is the wonderfully warm welcome the audience always gives you as you step onto the stage in St James' Church. It really is a great pleasure to return each time.”
Tasmin Little
“I’ve always relished playing at the Chipping Campden Music Festival! The church is stunningly beautiful, with wonderful acoustics, and the audiences are always warm, attentive and knowledgeable. Charlie Bennett has created something to be treasured; a festival full of performers of the highest quality, playing superbly varied and engaging programmes, in a glorious venue situated in one of the prettiest villages imaginable.”
Steven Isserlis
“I love everything about the Chipping Campden Festival! I love the village itself - surely one of the most beautiful in England; I love the church, with its serene atmosphere and beautiful acoustics; I love the way the audience listens with noiseless concentration, to every note one plays; and I love the way we musicians are treated by the administration of the festival, which seems to anticipate our every need, whim or desire. Playing at the festival is one of the highlights of my musical life. Thank you so much to Charlie Bennett and his merry team for all their amazing hard work!”
The Jerusalem Quartet
“The surroundings and atmosphere in Chipping Campden is pure magic. Combining the unique concert venue with a wonderful audience, which was surely developed and nurtured with great care, makes for a unique concert experience both for the performers and the audience. It is definitely one of the dates we are most looking forward to on our season calendar.”
Richard Goode
“The spacious beauty and splendid acoustic of St. James Church in Chipping Campden create an ideal atmosphere for making music. Playing there for the warm and receptive audiences has been among the highlights of my musical life.”
Steven Osborne
“The Chipping Campden Festival is one of the best stops on the UK concert scene. Fabulous setting, a wonderful array of world-class musicians, and real artistic integrity and vision on the part of Charlie Bennett: it’s a joy to perform and attend concerts there."
Robert Levin
“The Chipping Campden Music Festival provides an exquisite venue of intimacy amid an incomparable historical setting. It was heartwarming to communicate with such a receptive audience and I congratulate you heartily for your deft programming and personal warmth. Every artist fortunate enough to be invited to perform at the Festival will take indelible memories from church, town, inhabitants, and visiting audience members.”