Director’s Introduction 2013-07-15T20:07:54+00:00

Welcome to our third biennial Broadway Arts Festival

Broadway Arts Festival has its origin in the late 19th century, when the famous American artist John Singer Sargent paid many visits to this idyllic Cotswold village and during his time here painted his ‘en plein air’  masterpiece ‘Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose’. The spirit of that age, when the Broadway Colony flourished and many distinguished artists, musicians and authors spent time together, is now celebrated by the biennial Broadway Arts Festival.

Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose 1885-6 by John Singer Sargent 1856-1925

Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose by John Singer Sargent

In 2014 we are delighted that the new Ashmolean Museum in Broadway will be hosting a special exhibition of Sargent’s work that has not previously been seen by the general public. The museum itself is an exciting addition to Broadway, further enhancing this charming village which, since the days of the Broadway Colony, has developed an international reputation amongst those who love the arts, music and beautiful places.

Whilst the legacy of John Singer Sargent and the Broadway Colony will always provide our motivation, the theme of the Festival in June 2014 is ‘Changing Times’ and looks back 100 years to the era before the Great War. Referred to by many as a Golden Age it was also, as reflected in the BBC television series Downton Abbey, an era of social unrest, women’s suffrage and industrial strife.

Amidst the charm of this charismatic Cotswold Village, where the evening light still reflects from the same beautiful stone buildings that have attracted so many artists and visitors over the years, ‘Changing Times’ will present a selection of art exhibitions, painting demonstrations and master classes, lectures, garden tours and musical events and seek to look more closely at that tremendously important era of England’s past.

Simon Pym Williamson
Festival Director