The Wansbeck Music Festival

Founded 1906 - Charity Commission Registered Charity No 1044978

The festival will take place from 25th March for Steel Pans and 29th March to 2nd April 2017 for other classes.

Affiliated to the British and International Federation of Festivals of Music, Dance and Speech.

Patron — Her Majesty the Queen

Young harpists who performed at the latest festival

This Morpeth Competitive Festival is based upon the River Wansbeck and its surrounding areas and serves musicians of all ages from around the North East region. The Festival attracts entries from competitors both individual and in ensembles ranging from Duets to Orchestras, Bands and Choirs. Competitors came from as far afield as Alnwick to Teesside.

The Wansbeck Music Festival is affiliated to the British and International Federation of Festivals of Music, Dance and Speech.

In 2006 the Festival celebrated its Centenary Year — although only the 94th Festival since competitions were not held during World War II.

The Festival continues its partnership with the Northumberland Brass Band Association, which funds the James Shepherd Special Brass Performance Class.


One of our young violinists receiving the Audrey Stimpson Certificate and Bursary from Morpeth Mayor Alison Byard

In addition to our long established major prizes, The Elsie Tunney Memorial Cup with a Bursary of £50 and the Audrey Stimpson Certificate and Bursary of £50, Morpeth Town Council has in recent years demonstrated its commitment to the young musicians residing or going to school in the Morpeth area by awarding a special bursary worth over £500 to the Wansbeck Music Festival. For the first time in 2016 Ashington Town Council funded a similar generous bursary of £600 for young people resident there. These bursaries enable talented musicians, between the ages of 11 and 21 years, to attend a chosen Summer Music School in July/August after the festival. Summer Schools attract performers from all over Europe and have a range of activities both musical and social. These awards will give the recipient the opportunity to enjoy working with professional musicians during a relaxed and very rewarding week.

The recipients will be chosen at the forthcoming Festival in March/April by our Adjudicator. The awards will be offered to the young musicians from Morpeth and Ashington who, in the opinion of the Adjudicators, are most likely to benefit from attendance at a Summer School.

These prizes will be awarded at the final Prize Winners’ Concert in St George's United Reformed Church in Morpeth. Other major prizes will also be presented at this concert.