Women of Early Music Festival

A festival that will focus on historical performance, research, and music by women

Women of Early Music Festival
  • £2,500

    pledged of £5,000

    • 14


    • 0


This project received pledges on Mon 30 Dec 2019

Women of early music festival

The world of early music can seem like a mess of complicated rules, cherry-picking facts, and purist authenticity. Historical performance, for those who love it, is an invitation to use historical sources to help us re-imagine how we perform, from the articulation of one note, to the institution of the concert.

We are raising money to create an early music festival that will focus on how historical performance, research and music by women overlap. This festival will provide an opportunity for musicians, academics, and audience members to think creatively about making music. 

This festival will be something that anyone, at any level of familiarity with early music, can enjoy. We will use this opportunity to challenge contrived performance traditions that make classical music inaccessible, and programming conventions that reinforce our limited musical canon. Most importantly, we will be showcasing incredible music.

Who’s hosting?

Our ensemble is called Judith Collective. We are historical performers who give old music contemporary relevance. Our aims are to unearth brilliant music by composers that rarely make it into programmes, and to re-evaluate the standard structure and etiquette of a concert around the repertoire we choose. We experiment with staging and interdisciplinary story-telling in our performances. We carefully consider things like venue, length, programming, staging, lighting, the expectations of an audience, clapping, and silence, on top of musical, technical, and research-based considerations.

Soon you will be able to learn more about us on our website, but basically, we are nerdy friends who get excited about nerdy things and are passionate about sharing it with people! 

Our story

At our last concert (where we presented an obscure, semi-staged, French cantata) an audience member said, ‘this was the first time I understood what was going on in a classical music concert’. 

We want this to happen much more, on a larger scale. Judith Collective believe that our creative performances and academic interests can come together in this festival, so that it will act equally well as an introduction to those unfamiliar with early music as an intellectual challenge to those who have spent their lives working in this field.

  • If you are a historical performer or an early music scholar, you will surely have a great time! Performances can be both accessible, and of the highest quality.
  • If you are a music appreciator, you will be treated to talks and performances that will make you think about all of the exciting possibilities for the future of classical music concerts.
  • If you are just a human, we welcome you most of all, and hope that you can join us!

Where will the money go?

Our minimum goal is £2,500. With this budget we could showcase 2 performances, one by us and one by a more high-profile period performer, as well as a talk from a musicologist, all on a shared theme. This budget would include the hire of a small venue, and harpsichord rental and safe transport (no Uber XL this time).

With £5,000, we can host our festival at the perfect venue. The festival will now include a variety of concerts and talks of different lengths, as well as workshops where academics and performers work side-by-side in front of an audience. Also, food!

If our goal is exceeded we will continue to scale up this festival. We’ll make it a full weekend. We’ll make it a month long if that’s what the fans want!


Thank you for taking your time to read this far. If you decide to donate, however much that may be, we have planned some fun rewards. We will be writing thank you notes, putting your names in programmes, sending a video recording, and inviting you to dress rehearsals! 

Where can you follow us?

Alongside this crowdfunding campaign, we will be launching an official ensemble website and social media presence.

For now, find us on Instagram, @judithcollective

Help us succeed!

If you are interested in this project, you can donate on this website!

To help your contribution go even further, share this project with like-minded music supporters, or to your social media accounts. The more you spread the word the more likely this project can materialise. Thank you so much! -jc