Spitalfields Music Announces Festival Curators & New CEO

Spitalfields Music is delighted to announce three new imaginative Artistic Curators – Edmund Finnis, Kate Molleson and Errollyn Wallen – who will work alongside recently appointed Chief Executive, Sarah Gee, to curate the 2020 and 2021 Festivals.

After a break in 2019, Spitalfields Music Festival will return in its former summer incarnation in late June 2020. This allows us to return to our original home of Christ Church, where Spitalfields Music began 43 years ago.

The 2020 Festival will continue to celebrate the very best music – both old and new – and feature a greater diversity of ideas, as we work with the three Artistic Curators to reimagine what impact a city-based festival might achieve. Each Curator brings with them different and complementary perspectives and experiences, and we are excited to realise their ideas next June. Find out more about the Curators below.

This new structure comes at a time of exciting change for the Bethnal Green-based charity – which runs an award-winning, year-round learning & participation programme in care homes, local schools, and to train and support emerging music leaders and composers – as it recently appointed Sarah Gee as its Chief Executive. Sarah served on the board for six years until 2014, and comes from a fundraising and marketing background, having worked for the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Academy of St. Martin in the Fields prior to co-founding the creative sector consultancy Indigo-Ltd.

Professor Maurice Biriotti, Chairman of Spitalfields Music, said:

“Spitalfields Music is excited to enter its next phase with Sarah at the helm, as she brings with her a wealth of experience and insight. We’re also hugely excited about collaborating with Ed, Kate and Errollyn to deliver a diverse programme of events in and around our original home in Spitalfields, which will be announced in the early Spring.

We look forward to working with all three curators, many other artistic collaborators and our committed staff team to continue to bring astounding music making to London’s East End.”

Sarah Gee, Chief Executive of Spitalfields Music, said:

“The opportunity to work with the wonderful team at Spitalfields Music, which delivers so much impactful work year-round in the East End, was too good to miss. We can’t wait to unveil our plans for 2020, which will reflect the changing demographics of our local communities, and to share the 2020 Festival programme with our loyal audiences and newcomers alike.”

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About Errollyn Wallen
Errollyn Wallen – ‘renaissance woman of contemporary British music’ (The Observer) – is as respected a singer-songwriter of pop influenced songs as she is a composer of contemporary new music. The motto of Errollyn’s Ensemble X, ‘we don’t break down barriers in music… we don’t see any’, reflects her genuine, free-spirited approach and eclectic musicianship. Errollyn’s two major areas of study were baroque and contemporary music, and she has been commissioned by outstanding music institutions from the BBC to the Royal Opera House. In 2007 Errollyn was awarded an MBE for her services to music.
Find out more at: www.errollynwallen.com

About Edmund Finnis
Edmund Finnis is a “hugely gifted composer” (Sunday Telegraph) whose music has been hailed as “magical” (The Times), “iridescent, compelling” (The Guardian), and “ethereally beautiful” (Herald Scotland). Finnis’s multifaceted output ranges from intimate music for soloists and duets to immersive electronic pieces, music for film, ensemble music, and works for large orchestra.
Find out more at: www.edmundfinnis.com

About Kate Molleson
Kate Molleson is a journalist and presenter of BBC Radio 3’s New Music Show and Music Matters. Her articles are published in The Guardian, The Herald, BBC Music, Opera and Gramophone magazines; she has made documentaries for BBC Radio 4 and BBC World Service. She grew up in Edinburgh then studied clarinet performance at McGill University in Montreal and musicology at King’s College London. She has been an editor and cycling columnist for the Montreal Gazette, deputy editor of Opera magazine and the Guardian’s classical music critic in Scotland.
Find out more at: www.katemolleson.com