Moor and moor delights

PUBLISHED: 15:50 14 October 2014 | UPDATED: 15:50 14 October 2014

Carducci will delight music fans. Photo Andy Holdsworth

Carducci will delight music fans. Photo Andy Holdsworth


Put the magic of Exmoor and Dartmoor together with great classical music and you have the Two Moors Festival.

Each October roughly 30 concerts take place across 1,200sqm of the two moors.

Exmoor’s villages and small towns provide ideal locations for such events and taking Dunster and Dulverton as examples. Their beautiful churches offer near-perfect venues for recitals given by the likes of Kate Royal (fresh from this year’s Glyndebourne’s production of ‘Rosenkavalier’), Eton’s quite superb Music Scholars, the renowned pianist, Imogen Cooper and the Carducci Quartet with Jayson Gillham.

Good pubs and hotels abound and the shopping on offer is excellent.

There are other Exmoor events too for the festival includes talks and even a visit to the Exmoor Pony Centre.

The Sunday service is in Exford with the Dean of Exeter Cathedral, the Very Revd. Dr Jonathan Draper preaching the sermon.

Of course there is Dartmoor to be considered as well with concerts including those of one of the finest pianists of her generation, Angela Hewitt, the Doric Quartet and celebrated violinist, Agata Szymczewska to whet the appetite.

Over the years the Festival has grown to such an extent that there is a media partnership with Classic FM, HRH the Countess of Wessex became Patron in 2007, BBC Radio 3 live broadcasts take place and the commission of the opera Tarka the Otter won the BBC’s Best Stage Work for composer Stephen McNeff.

There was also a major 10-year celebration with a gold medal-winning garden at 2010’s Chelsea Flower Show.

This year’s programme is being greeted with considerable enthusiasm. People like roving the countryside for a concert in the morning, stopping for fish and chips between the moors, before attending an evening recital on Exmoor.

With artists of supreme international fame and programmes ranging from Gregorian Chant to Bach to Schumann, to Alec Roth’s song settings (sung by Mark Padmore), there really is something for everyone.

The event will take place from 15-25 October.

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