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All enquiries to the Section Co-Ordinator: 
Mrs Ruth Pitts, 07933 210 667, Email

Where Levels are given rather than grades, the approximate levels are:

  • Beginner: Pre Grade 1 & Grade 1; Elementary: Grades 2 & 3
  • Intermediate: Grades 4 – 5; Advanced: Grades 6 – 7
  • Open: Post Grade 8


Where reference has been made either to a specific grade, or to terms such as elementary, intermediate etc, or to a level expressed in Grades, it is expected that entrants, parents, and especially teachers, will bear in mind that it is in the spirit of the festival to try to adhere carefully to the standards suggested by the the relevant grade.  If in any doubt about the level of a piece then teachers should not hesitate to contact the Instrumental Section Co-ordinator who will be happy to give guidance.  

Whilst it is obviously acceptable to play an exam piece in the festival, wider repertoire is strongly encouraged, in the context of the above advice.

Entrants may play more than one piece in a class as long as the time limit is adhered to.

Within any class, the adjudicator will pay more heed to the standard of the performance than to the level of difficulty of the piece. 


Andrew Sherwood ARCM

Born and educated in Africa, Andrew studied violin and composition at the RCM. He has performed across the world as conductor and violinist and composers have written for him. He has led the Mercury Ensemble for Ballet Rambert and freelanced in many British orchestras.

He is Professor of Violin at Trinity College of Music and, as a conductor, has worked with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and is Director of Music for the Brighton Youth Orchestras; Musical Director of the Musicians of All Saints; Director of Choirs for the University of Brighton and Conductor of Somerset County Youth Orchestra.