The go-to guide for early music



Mayfield Festival

The Mayfield Festival of Music and the Arts is a biennial festival held in even-numbered years in the historic village of Mayfield in East Sussex.


🌱Spring festival



The Mayfield Festival of Music and the Arts was founded in 1970 and almost from its inception it has established a reputation for the performance of classical music to a very high standard: it regularly features artists of international renown. The festival is centred around the twin architectural glories of St. Dunstan's Church and the Chapel of Mayfield School (this latter building having originally been the Great Hall of the Mayfield Palace of the Archbishop of Canterbury), and most of the festival's events take place at one of these venues. Past performers include James Galway, Evelyn Glennie, Dame Janet Baker, Dame Emma Kirkby, Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, Armonico Consort and Stephen Kovacevich.

The Mayfield Festival includes the Tunbridge Wells International Music Competition, which runs over 5 days in the middle of the festival and which in its own right attracts both stellar judges and more than one hundred highly talented young musicians from around the world. The winner of the Competition is invited to perform at the following Festival.

Nevertheless, although classical music is at the forefront of the Mayfield Festival's offering, many other art forms and music genres find a place, including theatrical performance, poetry reading, folk music, jazz and exhibitions. Moreover, the wide umbrella of the term 'classical music' allows plenty of scope for Early Music to feature in the festival. By way of example, the 2024 Festival will feature performances of the complete Brandenburg Concertos over two nights, madrigals by John Wilbye and a solo recital by the esteemed baroque violinist Rachel Podger.

Past events


Mayfield, East Sussex

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