World-famous names will be heading to King’s Lynn this summer to take part in the town’s 64th feast of music and the arts on July 13-26.
A programme with wide appeal includes the renowned Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, pianist John Lill, jazz singer Clare Teal with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra, and guitarist Craig Ogden with the London Tango Quintet.
Adding to the variety of entertainment will be comedy cabaret duo Kit and McConnel and speakers will include Antiques Roadshow ceramics expert Lars Tharp, and geographer and BBC Coast presenter Nicholas Crane. There will also be films, exhibitions and themed walks round the historic town centre.
Artistic director Ambrose Miller said: “The programme has very broad appeal and includes a wide range of music performed by international musicians maintaining the Festival’s tradition of excellence.”
The festival will have a rousing start with a brass spectacular staged by the Fairey Band, one of the world’s finest brass bands currently enjoying success in national competitions. The concert will include the premiere of a short, specially-commissioned piece marking cultural links between Lynn and Amiens in France.
For classical music lovers the first of three orchestral concerts will feature the inspiring Orchestra of St John’s conducted by its founder John Lubbock.
Many festival events will take audiences into Lynn’s historic buildings and the OSJ will perform at the Minster (formerly St Margaret’s Church).
As well as marking the start of the Great War 100 years ago the Festival will also mark the death 200 years ago of Charles Burney, the distinguished musical historian who was church organist at St Margaret’s, Lynn, for nine years.
There is a coincidental link between the two – the war covered all Europe as did Burney’s two great journals of his travels. So the Festival takes European diversity as its keynote and the theme will be reflected in several concerts including the King’s Lynn Festival Chorus performance of Brahms’ Requiem.
Charles Burney will be celebrated with a special Burney Day when Dr Peter Sabor will talk about the musician and historian’s friendship with Dr Johnson. English Concert’s performance will trace Burney’s travels round Europe and an organ recital will include some of his music.
The Ruth Fermoy Memorial Concert, remembering the Festival’s founder, will be given by the Navarra String Quartet at St George’s Guildhall. The quartet has an international reputation and is described as one of the most dynamic and poetic quartets of today.
Pianist John Lill, a favourite with Festival audiences, will return to play music by Mozart, Schumann, Brahms and Beethoven.
After her sell-out Lynn Festival concert two years ago jazz singer Clare Teal will be back as special guest of the National Youth Jazz Orchestra. Another artist making a welcome return to Lynn will be guitarist Craig Ogden who will appear with London Tango Quintet.
The Jubilee String Quartet will launch the Festival’s popular series of five coffee concerts at Lynn Town Hall. But first they will perform an afternoon concert at Park House, Sandringham. The coffee concerts feature rising stars of the classical music world in a variety of ensembles and programmes.
At a Royal Geographical Society lecture writer and broadcaster Nicholas Crane will talk about the fascination and importance of maps, and Living Up to Ones Teapot will be the title of an illustrated lecture by Lars Tharp.
Renaissance wind band Blondel will celebrate the joys of summer at All Saints Church and Contemporary Consort will feature works by eminent British composer David Matthews who will also talk about his music.
During the final concert by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra acclaimed Bulgarian cellist Michael Petrov will perform Elgar’s Cello Concerto. Brahm’s Second Symphony will bring down the curtain on the 2014 Festival.
The Festival exhibition will feature work by West Norfolk Artists Association in the Fermoy Gallery at Lynn Arts Centre. The Festival is also supporting an exhibition focussing in the Custom House focussing on Charles Burney.
Films are being shown in partnership with Lynn Community Film Club.
The festival box office at the Corn Exchange (01553-764864) will open on Monday April 14 for Festival Friends’ and Patrons’ priority booking. General booking begins on Monday April 28.
Visit www.kingslynnfestival.org.uk or call the Festival office on 01553-767557.