Launched last year, replacing the former Hampstead & Highgate Festival, the Hampstead Arts Festival has already forged a reputation for presenting a fascinating selection of concerts and talks.
This year’s packed programme includes talks with Neil Kinnock, Zoe Wanamaker and Jonathan Miller, as well as music from American violinist Tai Murray, soprano Sophie Bevan, and a rare solo recital from jazz pianist Gwilym Simcock.
A highlight of the festival is sure to be the renowned Brodsky Quartet who, over a series of four concerts, will couple works of old masters with a rarely heard quartet cycle by Alexander Zemlinsky. A Jewish Viennese composer, Zemlinsky was a protégé of Brahms and Bruckner and colleague of Mahler and Schoenberg.
The festival also provides an excuse to peek inside some of Hampstead’s finest buildings, including St Stephen’s Rosslyn Hill (pictured above), winner of a 2011 English Heritage Angel Award for “Best Rescued” building; the 18th-century St John-at-Hampstead Church; and Burgh House at New End Square, built in 1704.