A message from the Festival’s Artistic Director


GJ Old Palace

Lord Salisbury recently reminded us that the Hatfield House Chamber Music Festival started on a wing and a prayer five years ago. Little did we know how that journey would unfold, and what a joy it is to look back at all the memories.

Over the last few years we have introduced a number of themes as part of the festival. The first was “Remembrance” which commemorated WW1, the 150th anniversary of Richard Strauss, and the late Sir John Tavener. Last year, we explored “Vienna, the city of music”, and this year we are moving into new terrain with a festival Inspired by Bach

We are thrilled to be joined this year by new artists including eminent Hertfordshire-bred musician Alison Balsom, as well as artists from previous years including the Navarra Quartet, who will be performing a late night concert in the Old Palace alongside poetry recited by acclaimed actress Juliet Stevenson. Melvyn Tan and Maggie Cole will be bringing their fortepiano and harpsichord for some wonderful collaborations during the weekend, Angela Hewitt will perform a recital in the Marble Hall as part of her Bach Odyssey Tour, and we also look forward to hearing performances from celebrated musicians Rachel Podger, James Gilchrist and Tom Poster.

Thanks to the help of cellist, Robin Michael, we have created an in-house Baroque Ensemble led by Pavlo Beznosiuk from the Academy of Ancient Music who will be collaborating with artists in residence during the weekend. We are also excited to be holding a solo recital in the intimate setting of the private Chapel for the first time, and we look forward to rounding up the festival with a performance of Bach’s Magnificat, conducted by Terry Edwards and performed by the Bach Choir alongside an orchestra of the UK’s most respected baroque musicians.

Please do come along for what I’m sure will be another memorable weekend of music at Hatfield House.

Yours sincerely,



Guy Johnston