Founded by Andrew Bernardi in 1991 to inspire young and older members of the community to share and benefit from the joy of music, the Bernardi Music Group comprises a committed group of professional musicians from some of the UK’s leading ensembles and orchestras who come together to perform varied and versatile repertoire in a number of different performance, education and corporate settings in Sussex, across the UK and internationally.
Andrew’s founding vision was to take classical music out of the traditional concert hall and into the community, inspiring people of all ages and backgrounds to come together to share music together and support charitable causes. That commitment has remained at the heart of the Bernardi Music Group’s work ever since. From its humble beginnings as a meeting point for a small group of musicians to perform together, it has expanded to encompass the Shipley Arts Festival which it founded in 2000, the new Leonardslee Concert Series, regular performances at leading venues across the UK, a year-round String Academy education programme for young musicians including international cultural exchanges, ambassadorial work with governments and businesses, major partnerships with national and international sponsors and partners, and a vast range of community work.
The group’s flexibility and expertise as an ensemble allows for its work to range from chamber to symphonic and over the years they have worked with internationally-renowned composers including James Whitbourn, Roderick Williams OBE, Cecilia McDowall and the late Jon Lord (formerly of Deep Purple) whose work To Notice Such Things performed by Bernardi Music Group reached No. 4 position in the Classic FM charts. Bernardi Music Group is also a champion of English music and most notably that of the composers John Ireland, Elgar and Vaughan Williams whose music have strong connections with the group’s home county of Sussex.
As the Bernardi Music Group approaches its thirtieth year, we are looking ahead to the future, forging major partnerships with like-minded international organisations under a shared vision to create new art forms that span different disciplines and genres. We also continue to expand on the work we have done during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic to engage and connect with musicians and audiences in new and innovative ways using the latest technology.