About

Jacques & Pippa 2015

Musique Cordiale is

a major annual 18-day international music festival begun in 2005 in
Provence, France, where it features:

  • a Festival Orchestra consisting of professional players drawn from major orchestras and conservatoires across Europe
  • a pan-European Festival Choir made of professional and semi
    professional singers who come together twice each year to rehearse and sing together. They perform a capella and sing a major choral work with orchestra and soloists in two final concerts of the festival
  • several small ensembles and solo performers of chamber music, vocal and instrumental recitals, jazz and a little folk and rock
  • an academy for 10 young string players, aged 13 to 20, taught by 3 well-known international players and an accompanist. Students play solos and perform in small ensembles before each sitting next to a professional in the annual Academy orchestral concert.
  • over 20 concerts, including 7 free concerts in 9 towns and villages in the south of France
  • 2 –3 conductors,  a dozen soloists and 140 musicians and singers
  • 13 or more nationalities working together to make music
  • 9 volunteers working hand -n-hand all year long, strengthened by an energetic team of 12 +volunteers during the annual festival
  • a huge voluntary team effort all year long to organise this event under the auspices of a non-profit association
  • 2 2 part-time paid staff in charge of administration, development & education (contact: info@musique-cordiale.com)

Musique Cordiale also stages an autumn weekend in Kent, England (the first was also in 2005), again bringing together musicians, singers , conductor & volunteers and other occasional concerts elsewhere in Europe – for 3 different concerts in 3 churches in Kent.

Support us: You support us by coming to our concerts or by becoming a member or Friend. An independent  charity, The Musique-Cordiale Trust, (English charity no: 1167732) seeks to raise vital funds from Friends, donors and other charities to help support young musical talent, including  through bursaries and money to contribute towards the year-round cost of organising courses and concerts.


The Musique Cordiale International Festival & Academy is a unique festival in the South of France situated in hill towns between Nice and Aix-en-Provence. 2018 will be the 14th festival and will feature over 20 concerts including major choral and orchestral works, chamber ensembles, free lunchtime concerts and late night recitals in churches, chapels, an amphitheatre and under the stars.

Musique Cordiale started with a dream of Pippa Pawlik to perform Bach’s B Minor Mass in the church in Seillans in 2005. As a former professional violist, she invited her musician friends for a musical holiday – with wine included – and this developed into a festival. The choral tradition remains the integral part of Musique Cordiale and a major work for choir closes the festival each year. The choir is made up of excellent amateur and professional singers from ensembles including The Bach Choir, the London Symphony Chorus, Groupe Vocal Arpège de Bordeaux and the Ensemble Equinox.

The Festival Orchestra is a multi-generational ensemble made up of young professionals and established musicians from orchestras including the LSO, the City of Birmingham Orchestra, the OAE, the Tonhalle Zurich and the Oslo Philharmonic. Musique Cordiale acts as a platform for burgeoning soloists and orchestral players, offering them an opportunity to learn and perform works which they will later play on the international stage.

Each year, we invite accomplished conductors to direct the orchestra and the choir. Other distinguished musicians act as Academy teachers for young talented string players.. The idyllic surroundings of the Pays de Fayence provide a unique setting for musicians and singers to perform together in an informal, Provençal environment.

Since 2005, performances have included Mozart’s C minor Mass and Requiem, Duruflé’s Requiem, Bach’s Magnificat, Haydn’s Te Deum and Nelson Mass, Handel’s Dixit Dominus, Dvorak’s Stabat Mater, the Monteverdi Vespers and Fauré’s Requiem. Operas staged include Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas, Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro and Cosi fan Tutte, Puccini’s La Boheme and Rossini’s Barber of Seville.

Pippa Pawlik, the artistic director of the festival, studied the violin at the Royal College of Music in London and played professionally in London and Switzerland.  With two young children, she then changed direction and worked in music promotion with record companies, international orchestras, festivals and artists from all over the world. Pippa now lives and works in Kent, having relaunched her PR business with clients in America, Germany and the UK. She also acts as a mentor, offering musicians career guidance, inspiration and brainstorming strategies.

‘Bringing music to life’ Musique Cordiale is supported by many friends and volunteers who give their time or financial support to make the festival a success including members of the Conseil d’administration  (board) of the association which runs the festival. A vital element in this has been generous support from local government including the Mayor & Municipality of Seillans, the Community of Communes of the Pays de Fayence as well as other communes and the coastal town of Saint-Raphael.

The Festival is staged by L’Association Musique Cordiale, a French organisation, whose object is to encourage cultural exchange within Europe and internationally for the promotion of the study and performance of music and song. Its elected Conseil d’Administration is responsible for its management and strategy. The work of the association is  supported by a UK non-profit body, The Musique Cordiale Trust, an English charity, which helps to pay for conductors and teachers and raises funds to provide bursaries to talented young musicians. While the Trust promotes high quality music and education of musicians from all over Europe, the association tries to encourage young people from  the Departement du Var and the wider PACA region to participate in the festival and academy.

Musique Cordiale has become a major cultural event in the Var. It plays an important role in nurturing a pan-European Entente Cordiale for musicians and audiences – both local and visiting – who also appreciate the breath-taking scenery and inviting climate of the region. Many are surprised to discover such high quality music-making in this rural pocket of Provence – and then go on to discover the excellent gastronomic, historical and natural tourist attractions of the region..