wimbledon international music festival 2021

Wimbledon International Music Festival 2021

Wimbledon International Music Festival 2021

Wimbledon International Music Festival is back live in November 2021! Director Anthony Wilkinson tells us about the highlights… 

Wimbledon International Music Festival  is back for 2021! Since November 2009, it has brought the finest artists to audiences in south west London, given a platform to young artists in the early stages of their careers, and celebrated music in the local community.

It has gone from strength to strength and, after a ‘virtual’ festival last year with up close and personal performances streamed online, the festival is back, live in Wimbledon from 13-28 November. Festival director, Anthony Wilkinson, says that, “things may still feel a little different, but it will be wonderful to experience live music in the heart of our community once again.”

“There’s something for everyone to enjoy, with performances by internationally-acclaimed artists including bass-baritone Sir Willard White, pianist Dame Imogen Cooper, the Tallis Scholars and many more. I always try to present the best of the best, whether it’s the Philharmonia Orchestra, a Tango Extravaganza with ‘Strictly’s’ Leandro Palou, or violinist Viktoria Mullova’s sublime solo Bach.

What all the events have in common is the power to move people. As Anthony notes: “I have no absolute favourite composer and I love a very wide range of music, as long as it is played well. I can be moved by a solo flute from the Andes, traditional and contemporary jazz, the chamber music of Bach and Beethoven, the operas of Mozart and Verdi, or the symphonies of Mahler and Shostakovich”, says Anthony.

Key to the festival is opening up classical music to a wider audience. Says Anthony: “I believe classical music should be accessible to all, and we are trying something new this year with ‘Bring Up the Music’, an event for those who may never have been to a concert before. People really do say that they don’t know anything about music and are therefore nervous about going to concerts, but come and discover live music – it will be a joyful experience.”

The festival is also undertaking something special this year, ‘Music in Mind’, a symposium curated by Professor Adam Ockelford, from Roehampton University, looking at the impact of autism, deafness and blindness on musical development. A leading researcher will assess each condition in discussion with members of the musical community including composer and broadcaster Michael Berkeley, and the celebrated deaf percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie.

Anthony is passionate about the festival, its ethos and the transformative power of music. He wants to encourage young people into a career in music: “A career in the creative arts is something to be cherished and can sustain for a lifetime. There are many rewarding careers in music, not just as a performer. I’ve always been ‘behind the camera’, so to speak, and have loved every minute of it. To bring an international music festival to Wimbledon is a real privilege and joy”.

Wimbledon International Music Festival takes place from Saturday 13 until Sunday 28 November 2021.