2022 Festival Adjudicators

We have a fantastic team of professional adjudicators lined up and they are at the heart of our Festival, offering advice and encouragement so enthusiastically. If you would like to perform something unusual and unsure about which class, then contact us.

Steven Roberts

Steven Roberts

(Youth Jazz Band Challenge and Choirs)
BIFF

Steven has been a music adjudicator since 2001; has sat on the Adjudicators Council and in 2020 was re-elected for his third term of office to the Board of Trustees. He is a busy professional; conducting, teaching and lecturing. He brings with him experience as a manager,… Read More >

Steven Roberts

Steven Roberts

Steven has been a music adjudicator since 2001; has sat on the Adjudicators Council and in 2020 was re-elected for his third term of office to the Board of Trustees. He is a busy professional; conducting, teaching and lecturing. He brings with him experience as a manager, knowledge of quality systems, business acumen and many years of leading change.

He has successfully combined a career in education with his work as a conductor, musical director and adjudicator, working both in this country and in Europe and as far a field as Peru and Bahrain.

Steven has conducted numerous concerts throughout this country and throughout Europe with a variety of Choirs, ensembles and orchestras, winds bands and brass bands.

He studied piano, brass and voice and has worked in a variety of musical settings. He has worked alongside actors and dancers on many projects and is keen to support the work of the Federation to maximise opportunities for performance within all disciplines. He enjoys working with his colleagues on the Board, Councils and the wider community of volunteers that help to keep our Festivals vibrant.

Having previously held the post of Director of External Relations at Barnsley College he has excellent communication skills and enjoys collaborative working.

He his happy to adjudicate virtual/on-line Festivals.

Jane Wilkinson

Jane Wilkinson

(Junior Vocal & Senior Vocal)
BIFF

Jane trained as a soprano at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and then at the Royal College of Music where she won many competitions and awards. She performs solo art song recitals across the country and has toured South Africa, Europe and America. She is Head of… Read More >

Jane Wilkinson

Jane Wilkinson

Jane trained as a soprano at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and then at the Royal College of Music where she won many competitions and awards. She performs solo art song recitals across the country and has toured South Africa, Europe and America. She is Head of Singing at Chelsea Academy and singing tutor at Imperial College, London. A former member of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain she now conducts New Malden Voices and New Malden Youth Choir. Jane has premiered many contemporary operas and frequently works alongside composers on new works for the stage and for recordings. She has performed oratorios and concerts at Edinburgh Festival, Royal Albert Hall and many other distinguished venues. Jane leads vocal masterclasses and workshops internationally and often runs ‘audition technique’ days for aspiring singers. Her voice has featured on a wide variety of albums and recordings from children’s repertoire to contemporary folk rock.

Rosie Whitfield

Rosie Whitfield

(Woodwind and Brass)
BIFF

As an experienced adjudicator member of The British and International Federation of Festivals, Rosanna is regularly called upon to adjudicate in the UK and abroad and has forged long-standing links with specialist music schools in Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Venezuela,… Read More >

Rosie Whitfield

Rosie Whitfield

As an experienced adjudicator member of The British and International Federation of Festivals, Rosanna is regularly called upon to adjudicate in the UK and abroad and has forged long-standing links with specialist music schools in Moldova, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Venezuela, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Her positive, interactive adjudicating style inducing young musicians to participate, year on year.
Rosanna’s vast experience as a performer, teacher and presenter, teamed with an innate love of music, underpins her unstoppable drive as a dedicated campaigner for music in education. Her natural ability to both captivate audiences and inspire young musicians to achieve their dreams stems from an unquestionable belief that music can change lives.

As Director of Music at Whitgift School, Rosanna has devised educational projects for all levels of musician from beginner to advanced, and regularly presents interactive concerts and masterclasses to thousands of primary school pupils. A keen conductor and composer, she directed the world première of her work, ‘The Gift’, at Croydon’s Fairfield Halls in November 2012, involving over 300 performers.

Instrumental in developing the Whitgift International Music Competition in 2013, Rosanna continues to promote the outstanding benefits of the many musical projects offered by the school and supported by the Whitgift Foundation.
Rosanna has recently been appointed as Head of Junior Guildhall Conservatoire from January 2020.

Lorraine Deacon

Lorraine Deacon

(Strings)
BIFF

At the Royal Academy of Music Lorraine studied the ’cello with Douglas Cummings and chamber music with Sidney Griller, and whilst there was awarded the Manson Prize for the Performance of Contemporary Music by Sir Michael Tippett. She subsequently undertook further studies with… Read More >

Lorraine Deacon

Lorraine Deacon

At the Royal Academy of Music Lorraine studied the ’cello with Douglas Cummings and chamber music with Sidney Griller, and whilst there was awarded the Manson Prize for the Performance of Contemporary Music by Sir Michael Tippett. She subsequently undertook further studies with David Smith of the Alberni Quartet.

Her performing career ranges from West End theatre to the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, whilst recordings range from the haunting cello solo on Katie Melua’s cover of “Turn to Tell” to the string chamber works of David Osbon with the Anglo American duo for Albany Records

She is now principal ’cellist with the Chameleon Arts Orchestra and gives regular chamber music recitals at South Hill Park. Concerto performances include Bernstein’s Three Meditations and the concertos of Elgar and Walton under conductor Philip Ellis.

Based in Berkshire she teaches ’cello at Wellington College and is passionate about passing on her joy of music-making to the next generation. Many former and existing pupils have been awarded music scholarships to prestigious public schools including Eton, Harrow, Winchester, Wellington, and Charterhouse, or have gained places at specialist centres such as Chethams and The Purcell School, and many have gone on to further study at the country’s leading conservatoires.

Vivienne Redford

Vivienne Redford

(Speech and Drama)
BIFF

Vivienne has studied Speech and Drama since the age of four and has been teaching the subject since 1980. She is Head of Speech and Drama at a large independent girl’s school in Bedford. She is also the Principal of the Redford School of Speech and Drama, established in 1982,… Read More >

Vivienne Redford

Vivienne Redford

Vivienne has studied Speech and Drama since the age of four and has been teaching the subject since 1980. She is Head of Speech and Drama at a large independent girl’s school in Bedford. She is also the Principal of the Redford School of Speech and Drama, established in 1982, training children and adults of all ages in all aspects of the performing arts and communication. Many of her former students perform in TV, film and theatre around the world and in major West End productions, the Globe, the RSC and the National Theatre. Others are pursuing careers as teachers of Speech and Drama, Theatre Directors and Technicians.

Vivienne has produced and directed a diverse range of musical and theatrical productions and particularly enjoys writing and devising original and creative theatre with her senior students. For the past nineteen years, she has organised and directed a widely-acclaimed summer school for students aged 7 to 21, which culminates in a commissioned play written for, and performed by, the students who attend.

Vivienne is an examiner for the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, a member of the Society of Teachers of Speech and Drama and an Adjudicator member of the British and International Federation of Festivals travelling extensively throughout the UK, Ireland and the Channel Islands. She is a former secretary and now a Vice-President of the Bedfordshire Festival of Music, Speech and Drama which has given her a clear understanding and insight into the work, energy and commitment that Festival organisers, teachers and pupils put into making their Festivals a success.

Murray McLachlan

Murray McLachlan

(Piano)
BIFF

Murray McLachlan has been adjudicating for nearly 30 years and is based in Manchester. He is chair of the European Piano Teachers' Association. He has made over 40 commercial recordings which have consistently received outstanding reviews, including ‘key recording’ and ‘rosette’… Read More >

Murray McLachlan

Murray McLachlan

Murray McLachlan has been adjudicating for nearly 30 years and is based in Manchester. He is chair of the European Piano Teachers' Association. He has made over 40 commercial recordings which have consistently received outstanding reviews, including ‘key recording’ and ‘rosette’ status in the Penguin Guide to CDs.

He has performed on all five continents and is Head of Keyboard at Chetham’s school of Music, Tutor at the Royal Northern College of Music and Founder/Artistic Director of the Chetham’s International Summer school and festival for Pianists, Europe’s largest summer school devoted exclusively to the piano.

In 2007 McLachlan launched the first Manchester International Concerto Competition for Young Pianists an event that was held for the sixth time in 2019.

Alongside his work as an Adjudicator for The British and International Federation of Festivals, he is Editor of ‘Piano Professional’ and 'Paino Journal' Magazines, as well as a regular columnist for 'International Piano. , His three Faber Music books on Piano Technique have received wide international acclaim and have been reprinted several times.

Mark Ashford

Mark is a world-renowned performer and teacher, beginning his formal musical training at Chetham's School of Music. He studied with Michael Lewin as a scholarship student at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM), graduating in 1993 with first class honours. Some years followed in… Read More >

Mark Ashford

Mark Ashford

Mark is a world-renowned performer and teacher, beginning his formal musical training at Chetham's School of Music. He studied with Michael Lewin as a scholarship student at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM), graduating in 1993 with first class honours. Some years followed in Spain with guitarist David Russell, supported by various bursaries including one from the RAM. Early in his performing career he became a laureate of several major national and international competitions including Radio 2’s Young Musician and the Julian Bream Prize. He has performed at many of the UK's most prestigious music venues, and international performances have also taken him to Europe, the Americas and the Far East. He has performed concertos with leading orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and BBC Concert Orchestra. Mark has ten CDs to his name including the Rodrigo Concerto. His latest CD is ‘Bachianas’ with the Vida Guitar Quartet and features saxophonist Amy Green. He is currently Head of Guitar at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire of Music.

David Oliver

David, a former High School head teacher, was Folkworks Education Director (1993-2009) and has wide experience of delivering courses, workshops and training in folk music, song and dance. A leading Northumbrian dance band accordionist and caller, he leads The Hedgehog's Skin… Read More >

David Oliver

David Oliver

David, a former High School head teacher, was Folkworks Education Director (1993-2009) and has wide experience of delivering courses, workshops and training in folk music, song and dance. A leading Northumbrian dance band accordionist and caller, he leads The Hedgehog's Skin ceilidh band. and is creator of The Hexham Village Band. In recent years he has led community music projects across the world and in the UK. He is co-author of Folk Voiceworks (2007), author of English Accordion Music (2008), and creator of the best-selling Folkworks Session Collection. A passionate, cheerful, and engaging advocate of traditional music and dance of these islands, he loves to encourage everyone to be happy, confident and enthusiastic about participating in our great musical traditions.