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Patron: Judith Weir CBE, Master of the Queen’s Music

Judith Weir, Patron of the competition, writes: "A huge amount of the music and songs ever written have been written about Love. But classically trained composers from the twentieth century onward seem on the whole to have avoided the subject. Music of this period, great though it may be, has often centred around alienation, anxiety, loss – and understandably so.


We wondered – if we invited composers around the world to send us Love Songs written for piano solo, would they respond, and how? What aspects of this emotion would they be responding to, and would we be able to tell what it was by playing and hearing the music? We also wondered if a new young generation would have different responses, hence our inclusion of an under-25 category. 

Playing short piano solos in the intimate surroundings of home was an important part of 19th century musical expression, and by launching the competition, we also hoped that our composers could create a modern form of that personal, accessible pianism, playable and enjoyable for a wide range of pianists and their hearers.

Events coming soon

Friday 20th October


Hellens Manor, Much Marcle, Herefordshire    HR8 2LY

Programme includes four Liszt love song arrangements and new love songs by Nico Muhly, Pavel Zemek Novák and Howard Skempton

Saturday 21st October


Hellens Manor, Much Marcle, Herefordshire HR8 2LY

In Love with the Piano

Free one-hour informal concert, open to all

(with love songs!)


to reserve place

William Howard
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