Every July the beautiful hebridean island of Islay is home to Cantilena's professional musicians and students of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland who together bring their unique sound of chamber music to residents and visitors, with many of the concerts being held in the famous Islay Malt Whisky distilleries.

New! Become a Cantilena Patron (easy online application)

cantelina 2018

What is Cantilena Festival?

To the beautiful and romantic hebridean island of Islay, Cantilena brings equally beautiful music, from the dazzling virtuosity of Vivaldi & Bach, through the romantic sophistication of Beethoven & Schubert, right up to the challenges of modern composers. The professional musicians involved in Cantilena Festival on Islay are driven by a powerful desire to share their ideas and passionate love of music-making with the emerging generation. Each year they invite young musicians from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, who benefit greatly from the opportunity of working alongside more experienced players.

Cantelina Festival

Who is it for?

Cantilena aims to achieve excellence through a co-operation between our professionals, young musicians and the people of Islay; to bring together a group of fine musicians to rehearse and perform works by the great composers in relaxed and informal surroundings; to champion the cause of youth both within the Cantilena group and with the participation of the people of Islay; and to break down the barriers between different musical cultures and make the Festival available to all.

Funding of Cantilena

We could not bring this wonderful music to Islay without financial support, and while our students do not receive a fee, their travel expenses and accommodation are paid, and we are deeply indebted to those Charitable Trusts and individuals who, through their generosity, allow us to provide these young professionals with a demanding but unforgettable week of rehearsals and concerts. If you are interested in supporting Cantilena please visit our Supporters page.

2020 Festival

The 2020 Cantilena Festival will celebrate both Beethoven's 250th anniversary, and our 20th anniversary on Islay:

Visit our News Page for more information, and news of our new Coordinator, Lauren McCormick.

Latest News

Be the first to hear, sign up now

Latest News

 

cfislay logo 200

CANTILENA FESTIVAL CANCELLATION

In view of the unprecedented situation of the coronavirus pandemic and the uncertainty of its term, along with the effect on travel, venues and accommodation, it is with extreme regret that we have taken the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Festival. This is all the more heartbreaking for us as we were so much looking forward to joining our wonderful friends and supporters in celebrating our twentieth year, but we have a duty of care to not only our players but to everyone who is involved in the Festival.

We appreciate the impact this will have on those who have already arranged ferries and accommodation, we are the same, but these are exceptional circumstances and we hope everyone understands.

Cantilena Festival on Islay

March 2020