Get ready for six sensational days as Southwell Music Festival returns for 2022

Music fans from across the county – and beyond – will be in for a treat later this month with the return of one of Nottinghamshire’s leading arts festivals.

By Steve Eyley
Monday, 1st August 2022, 12:00 am
This year's Southwell Music Festival is to run from August 24 to 29.
This year's Southwell Music Festival is to run from August 24 to 29.

Southwell Music Festival is back with its first full-scale festival in three years, featuring more than 40 unmissable live events.

Running from August 24 to 29, it will give you the chance to enjoy sensational live music, in indoor and outdoor locations across the town.

At the 2022 Southwell Music Festival, you will find choral and orchestral music, jazz and folk, music ancient, modern and everything in between.

Festival artistic director Marcus Farnsworth explained: “We are so excited to welcome audiences to our festival this summer.

"With such a wide range of music on offer, there is something for everyone in this programme. I can’t wait to experience the festival buzz again, and to see the town brimming with music this August!”

Resident ensembles the Festival Voices, Sinfonia and Chamber Soloists, are at the heart of the programme and will join forces in a performance of Mendelssohn’s dramatic oratorio, St Paul, on the Saturday evening in the stunning setting of Southwell Minster’s Nave.

The festival also welcomes stellar celebrity guests this year, including Northumbrian piper and star of the folk world Kathryn Tickell and British pianist Martin Roscoe.

Southwell Minster will again be at the heart of the Southwell Music Festival (Photo credit: Helena Cooke)

The festival opens on August 24 with an opportunity to hear star organist Anna Lapwood. Alongside her role as director of music at Pembroke College, Cambridge, Anna enjoys a varied career as a performer, broadcaster and conductor.

She has amassed more than 171,000 followers on Tik Tok and her passion for equality and diversity is evident in almost every aspect of her life and work. Her recital in Southwell Minster is going to be something to remember.

Other highlights for 2022 include composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad’s new song cycle, Everything Grows Extravagantly; a celebration of British composer Ralph Vaughan Williams featuring the poetry of his wife Ursula Vaughan Williams; and a performance of James MacMillan’s seminal work Seven Last Words from the Cross alongside music from Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov.

The programme also includes jazz from Magpie Trio and Alice Zawadzki, a visit from Custard the Dragon at the ever-popular Family Concert, and special Jubilee themed Come & Sing event.

Festival artistic director Marcus Farnsworth is pictured in action (Photo by Nick Rutter)

For tickets, you can book online at or call the box office on 01636 330014 (Monday–Friday, 9am–7.30pm).

Alongside the main programme, Southwell Music Festival is also committed to developing and supporting the future generation of music-makers.

This year the festival welcomes early career apprentices to play alongside its ensembles of professional musicians; runs a Masterclass session for selected young musicians and showcases the best of young musical talent through the Young Artists Series.

And don't forget the homegrown talent showcased at the free Festival Fringe, including the popular outdoor picnic concert Brass on the Grass, which makes a welcome return on Saturday afternoon.

Proceeds from all fringe events go towards local disability charity Reach Southwell.

The new Festival Guide is available in outlets in Southwell and the local area or you can visit

For more entertainment stories from the area, you can click here or click here.