Hagley Music Festival
A group was first set up in 2000 by the Church of England in Hagley to organise the first Hagley Music Festival in 2001. Since then the Festival has taken place in alternate years at the end of April / beginning of May. Concerts now take place in various venues in Hagley – St John’s Church, St Saviour’s Church, Hagley Free Church, Hagley Hall, and Hagley Community Centre.
The 2024 Festival will be the twelfth Hagley Music Festival and follows in the tradition of previous Festivals in offering an exciting variety of concerts designed to appeal to a broad range of musical tastes. It is funded through a combination of sponsorship, grant support and ticket sales.
With each festival, the scope and prestige of the event has grown, with many concerts fully-booked and good press interest and coverage.
INVOLVEMENT OF THE LOCAL COMMUNITY
The Hagley Music Festival brings together local bands, choirs and orchestras and juxtaposes these performances with concerts from internationally-acclaimed professional musicians. Local musicians always enjoy this involvement and are supported by enthusiastic audiences. The Festival brings world-famous musicians to local people.
Following an a cappella concert by the Swingle Singers at our first music festival in
2001, we have been pleased to welcome Emma Kirkby, Tasmin Little, Wayne
Marshall, Mark Bebbington, Emma Johnson, Natalie Clein, Leon McCawley, The
Orchestra of the Swan, Craig Ogden, Julian Lloyd Webber, Christian Forshaw,
musicians from the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, Guy Johnston,
Tamsin Waley-Cohen, Xuefei Yang, Di Xiao and Thomas Trotter. A number of local
Male Voice Choirs, Brass Bands, Jazz combos and other specialist instrumental
groups have given concerts, as have tribute bands, and we have listened to recitals
from local professional pianists and organists, sometimes accompanied by a cream
tea. We have often finished the festival with a service of Choral Evensong, on
several occasions given by one of the choirs from Worcester Cathedral.
FOSTERING A LOVE OF MUSIC AMONGST YOUNG PEOPLE
Concerts to attract young listeners, and encourage young musicians to participate
are always a key feature of the Hagley Festival. Various musicians from Haybridge
High School and Hagley Roman Catholic Sixth Form have performed in previous
festivals, either individually or as part of musical groups, as have both chamber
groups and individuals from King Edwards’ Sixth Form College in Stourbridge. A
local orchestra, and singers from local choirs, will bring together local musicians
with performers of all ages to sing Fauré’s Requiem at our next festival. Workshops
at the local Primary School are always a great success, leading to concerts in
conjunction with professional musicians – in 2022, once again, from Ex Cathedra.
This mix of exciting professional performers, local musicians and youngsters has
provided audiences with concerts which are accessible, informal and fun.