Forthcoming Events & News


Our Treasurer reports that OVER THE LAST TEN YEARS, DONATIONS TO MAINLY LOCAL CHARITIES HAVE TOTALLED OVER £13,300. A wonderful result, and thanks to the Artavian Singers and to our many instrumentalist & singer friends for their generosity to enable this.

            The Artavian Singers pictured at the Hospice Concert in Swimbridge.

We disbanded after many years of happy singing together. It was time for a change.



                                                Michael, me, Jacqui & Peter


Our two concerts - Baroque around Europe and Christmas Words and Music raised over £1,250 for the Calvert Trust; a great result;  and our Christmas concert enabled us to send a cheque for £500 to Médecins sans frontières

The Birthday Concert at Woolhanger was a great success, and in fact we were sold out.

Our young trumpeters and drummer stole the show, but the whole orchestra played beautifully, and the soloists were superb. A memorable occasion.

The final chorus can be viewed here (cut and paste into your browse)

Sunday 24th June ‘A Rural Life’

The Octagonal Music Room, Woolhanger Manor, Parracombe EX31 4RF at 7pm By kind permission of Graham & Beverley Mellstrom.

A wonderful concert with fantastic playing and singing by all to a full house. Stand outs for me were Miranda Westcott as Julius Caesar singing ‘Va tacito’  with the incomparable Gavin Edwards on natural horn. They stood next to each other which was great theatre as well. In the second half, Jane Downer on oboe played her solo divinely, matched by Angela Henckel as Beauty in the final aria of Handel’s  The Triumph of Time & Truth: Guardian Angels Oh protect me! All in all a triumphant success.

2019 programme.

An amazing and uplifting performance to a capacity audience of the four choir Mass on the 24th November. The sound of all four choirs and instruments including two harpsichords and organ was overwhelming when singing all together. Many thanks to all who took part, and it was good to do a joint venture with our ‘rival’ choir The Winkleigh Singers under the direction of Roland Smith. This was our final outing for the Artavian Singers, and it turned out, our final concert before lockdown which put a stop to live performances.

We had a great inauguration of our new Music Room at Upper Gorwell, and the acoustics were excellent. Lizzy & Danni sang divinely in familiar arias from Messiah, and not so familiar duets by Praetorius and Couperin with instrumental accompaniment from Nick & Nicola Jackman, Michael Williamson & Jacqui Robertson-Wade and myself. More use will definitely be made of the Music Room from now on.

We raised £220 for the Freedom Centre in Barnstaple who provide drop in facilities, hot meals and care and advice for many homeless and disadvantaged people in our community. Their small group of volunteers are a dedicated band indeed.


I have decided to disband the Artavian Singers after almost 30 years! We are all getting older, and I will be concentrating on more instrumental and solo works for a while. I may reform the group in the future, but am not sure when and how. It was great to have the dedication of our singers over the years and looking back, it is amazing the wide ranging  repertoire we have performed. We have raised a lot of money for charities as well and only this Spring, we raised almost £1,000 for North Devon Hospice.


Because of the Coronavirus, sadly there were no events possible.


Frustratingly, we have not been able to have any performances for the first nine months of this year. However, on Sunday afternoon September 26th we had a performance of Carolean music (Charles I & II) with readings in the Music Room at Upper Gorwell at last.

It was a teatime concert with six of us in front of 26 invited guests followed by tea. The weather was sunny and it turned out to be a great event. People wandered around the garden afterwards. It was a lovely relaxed start, and we raised £375 for the International Red Cross Afghanistan appeal. I look forward to more live music next year.




We started with something slightly different for us in that we hosted a wonderful early music ensemble called PASSACAGLIA in aid of Young Musicians Support, a worthwhile local charity which gives aspiring musicians the opportunity to further their talents. They  made use of our Music Room here at Upper Gorwell House and we were excited to be able to host them.




William Boyce (1711-1779)

The Music Room, Upper Gorwell House, Goodleigh Road,

Barnstaple EX32 7JP

We had a great time performing this lovely piece, and we were sold out. Performers were just about to fit onto the stage and the balance of singers & orchestra was excellent according to members of the audience.  They and the performers were treated to tea and cakes afterwards, and it turned into quite a party!

We gave the British Red Cross a donation of £625.

I hope we shall have further (but slightly smaller) events in the Music Room next year.


I look forward to seeing you again at our events, and thank you for your support.

Please contact me by e-mail (, or by telephone (01271-267091) for more information.