Welcome to the Abingdon Music Festival!

“A festival with a difference – not a competition but a workshop”

With a rapidly increasing Conavirus infection rate predicted for some weeks yet, and speed of vaccine distribution slower than predicted, the realistic prospects for the post-Easter period remain uncertain.

The Committee met, virtually, on Sunday 11 January to consider the situation for the scheduled Festival dates at the start of May. The possibility of face-to-face participation appeared slim, and the individual ‘mini-masterclass’ nature of the Festival was felt to be very difficult to replicate using any online method.

The decision was therefore taken to

POSTPONE the Festival to September – likely dates Friday 24 to Sunday 26.

We very much hope that all potential participants will put these dates in diaries now.  We also hope that the adjudicators will be able to join us on the changed dates, and that the venues – Abingdon School and St Michael’s Church – will be available. Updates will be published here as soon as known.

It is likely that the Concerto Competition will also be postponed, probably to late June / early July, depending on the availability of the Silk Hall. Last year’s entrants will be given first choice of inclusion if they find themselves available. Anyone interested in taking up any spare places should email abmusfest@gmail.com.  The Concerto Competition will run again in 2022, to maintain its biennial routine.

The 2021 Syllabus is posted under the ‘Syllabus’ tab, but obviously dates will be inaccurate. An update will follow as soon as various confirmations have been received and the RMF entry website has been updated.


Kentaro Machida, winner of the 2017 Maestro Conducting Competition (see information below), has just been appointed conductor of the Oxford University Sinfonietta, the university’s prestigious leading chamber orchestra. AMF wishes Kentaro every success for this exciting new opportunity.

We regularly receive comments that this is a really friendly and informative festival; to those of you who may be new to it, its “difference” means that after every performance, in whatever category, an adjudicator of the highest calibre will give instant comments and helpful advice. Audiences appreciate hearing these assessments immediately instead of having to wait until the end of the class, and performers really enjoy the chance to work on their pieces with an experienced adjudicator. The only element of competition is that each adjudicator is invited to select items for the final Sunday evening concert.

We could not run the Festival without our Friends, who pay a small annual donation to support the administration and assist as stewards and receptionists during the Festival weekend. Would you join them as a  Friend of the Festival? All details here: AMF-Friends-1911

The Festival is a member of the British and International Federation of Festivals for Music, Drama and Speech, of which Her Majesty the Queen is Patron.