Events Listing

It is with much regret that the Trustees of The Church Stretton and South Shropshire Arts Festival have decided to cancel the 2020 Festival, in view of the current pandemic. After 53 continuous years, this is not only a huge disappointment for the Trustees and the Festival Committee, but also for all our volunteers, our audiences, our exhibitors and for the community as well.
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To give you a flavour of our Festival, here is what we were planning to present in 2020:

2020 Festival: 25th July - 8th August

Bookings open 18th May for members, 1st June for general public.

Bookings will be available online, by post, by phone or at John Thomas Florist, Church Stretton. Look out for our Festival Brochure nearer the time, which includes a postal booking form.

  • Members will be able to purchase tickets online, from 18th May; members who have not yet renewed for 2020 will be able to renew their membership online at the same time as purchasing tickets.
  • New members will be able to join online, at the same time as purchasing tickets, from 18th May.
  • Members will still be able to book directly with Gloria Carter if they prefer.

For membership information please see the Membership Page.

Karolos

St Laurence's Church

7.30pm

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Karolos
This dynamic, virtuoso chamber ensemble of first-rate players including harp, flute, clarinet and string quartet will open the Festival with a flourish. Renowned for the energy and vitality of their concerts as well as their extraordinary musicianship.
"Expressive ... brilliant ... virtuosic" The Observer
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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Gill Styles and Richard Walker open the series with a programme of piano duets.
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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Thrilling music for soprano, trumpet and piano presented by Catherine Rooney, Wendy Jones and Richard Walker.
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ZRI’s Adventures with Charlie Chaplin

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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ZRI’s Adventures with Charlie Chaplin
Part concert, part film screening with live score, ZRI's Adventures with Charlie Chaplin is a show for all ages. Groundbreaking ensemble ZRI intertwine jazz, klezmer and classical music to match the brilliance of Chaplin in his prime.
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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French Horn ConneXion (John James, Gay Walker, Graham Lewis, Philip Harratt and David Garbutt) present a programme from Renaissance to jazz.
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The Pantaloons – Sherlock Holmes

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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The Pantaloons – Sherlock Holmes
Holmes and Watson tackle their most fiendish cases yet in this delightfully inventive and hilarious show! The vibrant and anarchic Pantaloons Theatre Company bring what promises to be "a production of ingenuity, verve and wit... hilarious!"
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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Songs for baritone and piano with our regular guests Paul Mocroft and John Jenkin.
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Natalie Cumming – Talk

St Laurence's Parish Centre

2.30pm

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Natalie Cumming – Talk
Natalie will be talking about her book, The Fiddle, which tells the extraordinary true story of a violin's survival through war and terror.
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A4 Brass Quartet

St Laurence's Church

7.30pm

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A4 Brass Quartet
A unique line-up of principal players from some of the UK’s top brass bands, these four astonishing musicians come together to perform both lyrical and high-octane works, forming a distinctive new take on chamber music.
"Technical virtuosity in abundance" Brass Band World
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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Ernő Dohnányi’s Sextet gets a rare performance by Mark Tocknell (clarinet), Lizzi Tocknell (horn), Claire Tocknell (violin), Mary Porter (viola), Jane Annette (cello) and Gill Styles (piano).
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Margarita Balanas

St Laurence's Church

7.30pm

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Margarita Balanas
Margarita is hailed as one of the most exciting and versatile artists of her generation. Known for her distinguished artistry and mesmerising stage presence, this Latvian cellist has performed to audiences world-wide. She will be joined by Guildhall Gold Medal finalist, pianist Ke Ma.
"Powerful, delicate, intense and brilliant" GLAM Adelaide
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St Laurence's Church

10.15am

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Shropshire Strummers return for another event in which the audience is invited to take part.
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Charles Court Opera – Iolanthe

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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Charles Court Opera – Iolanthe
Charles Court Opera present an enchanting new production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s sharp satire of power, privilege and parliamentary democracy. This witty and magical operetta tells a tale of forbidden love causing a most absurd fusion of two worlds – the magic Fairyland and a bamboozled House of Peers.
"Charles Court Opera has captured the full flavour of G&S." Sunday Express
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All Saints’ Church, Little Stretton

12noon

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Shaun Turnbull (Blackburn Cathedral)
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Kabantu

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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Kabantu
This unique Manchester-based collective return to the Festival, defying genre to embrace sheer joy in music from all over the globe as they play, sing and improvise.
"Utterly brilliant" Georgia Mann, BBC Proms
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Gamal Khamis

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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Gamal Khamis
Prize-winning pianist who captures many different sound worlds using a huge range of colour. Sensitivity and imagination shine out of his performances.
"Formidable keyboard skills" The Times
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Lucy Stevens – Virginia Woolf: Killing the Angel

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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Lucy Stevens – Virginia Woolf: Killing the Angel
When Lucy was here in 2018, we were treated to a riveting and very moving performance, telling the story of Kathleen Ferrier. We are delighted to welcome her back again this year, together with pianist Elizabeth Marcus, with the story of Virginia Woolf.
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St James’ Church, Cardington

12noon

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Michael Davey (Wellington)
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Polaris Duo

St Laurence's Church

7.30pm

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Polaris Duo
Formed in 2011, the Polaris Duo is an award-winning Saxophone and Harp Duo who explore an eclectic range of sound worlds and repertoire. This unusual pairing of instruments combines beautifully controlled saxophone tone with rich harp sound.
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Tea Time Concert: Mark Baigent – Oboe

Methodist Church

3pm

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Tea Time Concert: Mark Baigent – Oboe
Based in Bishop's Castle, Mark Baigent is one of the UK’s leading period oboists, performing music from baroque to modern on his collection of over 20 instruments – the ideal musician to take us on a journey through the history of the oboe. This will be followed by an excellent Cream Tea in the Church Hall.
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Walsall Jazz Orchestra

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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Walsall Jazz Orchestra
This 19-piece big band will blow you away with its distinctive sound – modern jazz with a strong rock-fusion element and characterised by its rich ensemble, cracking rhythm section and strong solos.
"Walsall Jazz Orchestra? Stunning – the town’s best kept secret" Birmingham Post
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St Laurence's Church

12noon

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Richard Walker (St Chad’s Shrewsbury and Little Stretton)
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The Versatility Serenaders

Church Stretton School

7.30pm

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The Versatility Serenaders
Bringing to life the most entertaining and neglected areas of music from the early 20th Century, this novel ensemble convivially engages the audience with authentic performances of popular music of that day. Guaranteed to end the Festival with a swing!
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Events are subject to change without notice.