The London Festival of Baroque Music announced today that Lindsay Kemp will be stepping down from his position as Artistic Director at the end of the 2017 Festival, in May. Festival Manager Lucy Bending has announced that she will depart at the same time.
Lindsay and Lucy, in post since 2007 and 2008 respectively, engineered the survival of the former Lufthansa Festival of Baroque Music on the termination, in 2014 of a sponsorship arrangement which had endured for three decades. They have enabled the Festival to maintain a position as one of Europe’s foremost early music festivals, with a distinctive reputation for high quality performances, a well-chosen roster of British and foreign artists and informed and ingeniously themed programming.
From just five days of concerts in 2015, the Festival has already resumed its nine-day ‘Lufthansa’ format, and maintains its vital and unique position as “London’s leading festival of early music” (Financial Times), and "an indispensable part of the capital's cultural landscape”. (BBC Radio 3).
Lindsay Kemp said: “I am immensely proud to have played a part in the re-establishment of the Festival. It was a huge challenge, but one of the most enjoyable and rewarding of my life. I am also proud to have shared this success with the brilliant Lucy Bending, quite simply one of the best festival managers in the business, and without whom the Festival could never have carried on.
"When I became Artistic Director in 2007, I always thought that ten years would be a reasonable term to serve, and now, with the Festival on its feet and back to its original length after only three years, it feels like the right time to move on. I will treasure many memories from the Festival, where over the years I have variously been punter, radio producer and artistic director, and wish my successor well.”
Mark Stadler, Chairman of LFBM, said: “Lindsay and Lucy did a brilliant job 'rebooting' the Festival after the departure of Lufthansa, for which we will always be grateful. We wish them both every success with their other projects.”