2020 Piano Festival Cancelled
Statement from the Board: It is with great sadness and disappointment that due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Hebden Bridge Piano Festival Board has taken the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Festival.
There are many factors involved in this decision – In particular we are concerned about the health, safety, welfare and availability of our volunteers and audience. Many of these people are in the over-70s at-risk category and may well find themselves quarantined for the next few months, which would make running the Festival impossible. We are also very aware of our responsibility towards our performers who may be risking their own health in coming to the Festival.
The Festival Board has been discussing the implications of a possible cancellation since the virus was first detected in the UK, and our policy has been to wait for formal government or Public Health England instructions on this. Although such advice is not yet entirely clear we now feel that it would be both futile and irresponsible to wait any longer to take a decision that has already been made by arts and sports organisations across the UK.
Organsers have told the HebWeb that they are hoping that as many of the performers as possible will perform at the 2021 Festival (23-25 April).
2020 Piano Festival programme launch
Monday, 2 March 2020
A regular fixture in the town's social calendar, the 2020 Hebden Bridge Piano Festival programme launch party takes place in the café bar at the Town Hall on Friday 13th March.
There's live piano music provided by Festival Director David Nelson for this free event which is open to everyone and starts at 6.30pm.
It's also the earliest opportunity to buy tickets and passes for what is now the eighth consecutive Festival weekend, which starts on Friday April 24th with another great programme of stunning recitals from top class artists with international reputations.
Headlining the weekend festival, which all takes place in Hebden Bridge Town Hall, are Joanna MacGregor and Martin Roscoe - distinguished classical pianists who have graced concert halls all over the world. They are joined by the young American pianist Eric Lu, who was the overall winner of Leeds International Piano Competition in 2018, the 2010 BBC Young Musician Lara Melda and highly-praised Chinese virtuoso BingBing Li.
Hebden Bridge Piano Festival has never been exclusively about Classical piano music and this year there are performances by Sheffield-based pianist and singer Dale Storr who is regarded as probably the greatest exponent of New Orleans jazz in the UK, and the sensational award-winning jazz pianist, composer, songwriter, poet and author Robert Mitchell.
The Festival has always had a strong commitment to programming contemporary music and this year has commissioned Beauty and the Beast, a new multi-media work exploring the juxtaposition of industrial heritage and the natural world, written and performed by West Yorkshire pianist and composer Phil Taylor.
These high-calibre concerts are interspersed with events intended to involve the whole community. Alongside the headline performances, the Festival programme features a children's concert given by the astounding Harry the Piano, recitals by local pianists and students, free concerts featuring non-classical piano music, and impromptu al fresco performances by anyone who enjoys playing.
"The programme launch is always great fun", said David Nelson.
"The Town Hall bar will be open so come along, have a drink, enjoy some live jazz piano, take time to absorb the excellent programme we've put together and secure tickets for what will undoubtedly be another sell-out weekend."
Tickets go on sale both at the launch and online at 7pm on March 13th, and the Festival box office opens at the Town Hall reception desk on Monday March 16th.
Alternatively, postal bookings can be made via the booking form available from the Festival website.
For in-person booking, the Town Hall box office will be open Monday to Friday, 9am-4pm, right up to the Festival weekend. There is a quick link for online booking and much more information about the recitals and performers at www.hebdenbridgepianofestival.com