Vice-Presidents of the EMF
Lord Armstrong of Ilminster GCB, CVO

was the Head of the Home Civil Service from 1981 until 1987. He is the son of the English composer Sir Thomas Armstrong, one of the many lesser-known composers to be championed by the EMF.

Lord Chadlington of Dean (Peter Gummer)

is CEO of Huntsworth plc, and was founder of Shandwick, which grew to become the UK’s largest PR company. He sits as a Conservative member of the House of Lords, where he speaks frequently on heritage and the arts.

Roger Gifford

is a banker, was Lord Mayor of London in 2013, and is Chairman of the City Music Foundation and the English Chamber Orchestra’s charity. He is a member of the Granville Bantock Society and the Society of Recorder Players.

Paul Guinery

He is an active member of the Delius Society, of which he has been the Vice-Chairman. He has appeared as an artist at the EMF on several occasions.

Robert Hardy CBE

will be a familiar face to many from his acclaimed performance as Churchill in The Wilderness Years and his much-loved role as the ebullient Siegfried Farnon in All Creatures Great and Small. He is also a leading authority on the English longbow.

Jeremy Irons

is an internationally acclaimed and Oscar-winning actor, perhaps best known for his performance as Charles Ryder in the television adaptation of Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited. He took part in the EMF 2006 as the narrator for Vaughan Williams’s evocative Oxford Elegy.

Sir Simon Jenkins FSA, FRSL

has a successful career as an author, journalist and broadcaster. His recent publications include England’s Thousand Best Churches, England’s Thousand Best Houses and A Short History of England. He is a regular correspondent for The Times, The Sunday Times and The Guardian.

Boris Johnson, MP

is the Mayor of London and a regular columnist for the Daily Telegraph. He was formerly Conservative Member of Parliament for the constituency of Henley (which includes Dorchester-on-Thames, principal venue for the EMF) and Editor of The Spectator.

Brian Kay

is well known as a radio presenter for BBC2 and Radio 3, for which he won the Sony Radio Award as Music Presenter of the Year. Brian is currently conductor of the Leith Hill Music Festival, following in the footsteps of Ralph Vaughan Williams. He is also fondly remembered as the bass in the King’s Singers and the lowest frog on Paul McCartney’s single as well as being a member of the backing group for Pink Floyd!

Professor Julian Lloyd Webber

is the Principal of Birmingham Conservatoire and is widely regarded as one of the finest musicians of his generation, with a glittering international reputation. His father was the noted British composer William Lloyd Webber. He has premièred more than sixty works for cello, has inspired new compositions from many composers and his many recordings have received worldwide acclaim. He has been President of the Elgar Society since 2009. Julian is President of the Friends’ Scheme of the EMF.

Sir Roger Norrington CBE

is known internationally for his work as a conductor and music director. He has worked with orchestras ranging from the London Philharmonic, the BBC Symphony and the Montreal Symphony, and in major opera houses such as the Royal Opera House and the English National Opera.

Sir Jonathan Phillips KCB

is Warden of Keble College, Oxford, having spent most of his previous career in Whitehall where he was Permanent Secretary to the Northern Ireland Office from 2005 until 2010. He has a lifelong interest in choral music and most particularly the English repertoire.

The Marquess of Salisbury (Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, Viscount Cranbourne) KCVO, PC, DL

is a distinguished Parliamentarian who has served in a number of senior Government posts under Conservative Prime Ministers, including Lord Privy Seal and Leader of the House of Lords.

Professor Sir Roger Scruton FBA, FRSL

is a distinguished academic, author, journalist and composer. He has written extensively on philosophy (in particular, aesthetics), music and England’s cultural heritage, as well several novels. He has composed two operas.

Leonard Slatkin

is internationally recognised as a conductor of the highest stature. He has conducted many of the major USA orchestras. In the UK he has been chief conductor of the BBC Symphony orchestra, principal guest conductor of both the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Philharmonia. Since 2008 he has been the music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

Sir Patrick Stewart OBE

is an Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated film and stage actor. He has been particularly acclaimed for his Shakeaperean performances, although he is perhaps most widely known for his role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard of Star Trek’s Starship Enterprise-D. He is a great supporter of classical music, and is available on CD narrating Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf and Strauss’s Enoch Arden.

The Right Honourable The Lord Trimble PC

Baron Trimble of Lisnagarvey is one of our country’s most distinguished politicians. His career began in the 1970s at Queen’s University, Belfast (David Trimble was then a Professor of Law), and he went on to become the leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, and a First Minister of Northern Ireland. He accepted a Life Peerage in 2006, and he continues to speak on constitutional questions, especially the future of the Union, now as a member of the Conservative Party.

Terry Waite CBE

was formerly the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Special Envoy, and in this role he negotiated the release of Western hostages in Iran and Lebanon, where he was himself captured by militant Islamists and held prisoner for over four years. He is passionate about music and an enthusiast for British composers such as Elgar.

Roderick Williams

Roderick Williams enjoys a singing career of unusual breadth and variety; his repertoire reaches from baroque to contemporary music and includes opera, oratorio and recital work. He is a prolific recording artist with a large catalogue of English music in particular, especially on the Chandos, Naxos and Dutton labels. He is also a composer of vocal music and is much in demand at music conservatoires around the country as a visiting performance coach.

Felix Aprahamian

was a music critic of the Sunday Times, acquaintance of Messiaen, Poulenc and Delius. He was also a renowned authorithy on organs and organ music.

 Lady Bliss

was the widow of the well-known English composer, Sir Arthur Bliss.

Michael Kennedy CBE

was a music critic, musicologist, author, editor of the Oxford Dictionary of Music and biographer of Elgar, Walton, Mahler and Vaughan Williams.

 Professor Sir Patrick Moore CBE, FRS, FRAS

was an astronomer, author, broadcaster, musician and composer. He wrote over seventy books on astronomy, and presented all but one of the BBC’s Sky at Night programmes from 1957 until his death — earning him a place in the Guinness Book of Records as the longest-serving television presenter.

Ursula Vaughan Williams

was the wife of one of the greatest and most widely performed English composers — Ralph Vaughan Williams. She was an author and poet in her own right and sadly passed away just a year after the inaugural EMF.

 Sir Rowland Whitehead Bt.

supported the EMF from its inception and devoted much energy and enthusiasm to getting the inaugural festival off the ground. He was an Old Radleian, the venue of several EMF concerts.