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York Early Music Festival Announces 40th Anniversary Partnership with Hiscox in 2017

10 January 2017

2017 is a significant year for the York Early Music Festival, as the internationally acclaimed 10-day summer festival celebrates its 40th anniversary and announces a new three-year partnership with specialist insurer, Hiscox.

The York Early Music Festival is a firm favourite on the UK music and arts calendar, and has garnered international acclaim as one of the jewels in the crown of the region's many festivals. Attracting visitors and musicians from across the world to its unique mix of concerts, illustrated lectures, workshops and educational activities, the Festival also celebrates the myriad of historic buildings, which make up the City of York.

Delma Tomlin MBE, Director of the National Centre for Early Music - the administrative home of the York Early Music Festival - said, "We are delighted that in such a significant year in our history, Hiscox has taken the opportunity to work alongside us. 2017 marks both our 40th anniversary and the 17th International Young Artists Competition to be held in the City, attracting emerging professional ensembles from across the world.  An ideal year to celebrate with such an internationally established partner."

Phil Thorn, Head of Direct Home Insurance, Hiscox UK, commented: "As a major employer in York, we are committed to supporting the community in which we operate and playing an active role.  We have a long-held passion for the arts, as do many of our customers, and so are delighted to be involved in the York Early Music Festival in what will be a momentous year."

Five Festival highlights in 2017
1.    Guest artists during this landmark year include the internationally acclaimed vocalists I Fagiolini, directed by Robert Hollingworth, honouring the music of Italian composer Claudio Monteverdi with a promenade show in York Minster. The performance is together with virtuoso period instrumentalists, the English Cornett & Sackbut Ensemble. 
2.    The Sixteen, widely recognised as one of the world's greatest choirs, with an international reputation for excellence, are much-loved regulars at the Festival.  Here in the UK, they are 'The voices of Classic FM', and are revered the length and breadth of the country thanks to their annual Choral Pilgrimage. Directed by Harry Christophers, this concert - featuring the music of Palestrina and Poulenc - will make full use of the Minster's magnificent acoustic.  
3.    Winners of the 2015 NCEM International Young Artists Competition Ensemble prize, the Consone String Quartet has gone on to acquire more prestigious awards and scholarships, and has given performances at the Cadogan Hall, Edinburgh Festival and at Buckingham Palace. This is an exciting return to York.
4.    The 2017 York Early Music International Young Artists Competition takes place during the festival week, culminating with a grand finale on Saturday 15 July.
5.    9 days, 30 performances, 10 venues and 50 hours of music.

York Early Music Festival 2017: Friday 7 - Saturday 15 July
Further programme details available early 2017. Tickets on sale March 2017:
Accommodation bookings at:

- Ends -
Press Contact:
Lindsey Porter, on behalf of National Centre for Early Music
m: 07568 309154

Editors Notes:
▪ York Early Music Christmas Festival and York Early Music Festival are supported by the Arts Council England; Media partner BBC Radio; the National Centre for Early Music; Tourism partners Welcome to Yorkshire and Visit York; the City of York Council and members of the York Hoteliers Association.

History of the NCEM
Established in 1977, the York Early Music Festival has taken place each July in the medieval city of York for the past forty years. The historic city was chosen as a host venue due to its many architecturally significant guildhalls, churches, and of course York Minster, which reflect the period of the music so well (circa 1250 - 1750.)

In 2000, the National Centre for Early Music, NCEM, was established in the city in its own historically important St Margaret's Church on Walmgate, and is a national organisation and vibrant venue for music and creative learning.

About The Hiscox Group
Hiscox is a global specialist insurer, headquartered in Bermuda and listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE:HSX). Our ambition is to be a respected specialist insurer with a diverse portfolio by product and geography. We believe that building balance between catastrophe-exposed business and less volatile local specialty business gives us opportunities for profitable growth throughout the insurance cycle. It's a long-standing strategy which in 2015 helped generate gross premiums written of £1,944.2 million and a profit before tax of £216.1 million.

The Hiscox Group employs over 2,200 people in 13 countries, and has customers worldwide. Through the retail businesses in the UK, Europe and the US, we offer a range of specialist insurance for professionals and business customers as well as homeowners. Internationally traded, bigger ticket business and reinsurance is underwritten through Hiscox London Market and Hiscox Re.

Our values define our business, with a focus on people, quality, courage and excellence in execution.  We pride ourselves on being true to our word and our award-winning claims service is testament to that. For more information, visit