Welcome to the website of the Holst Society, established to commemorate the life and music of the English composer Gustav Holst. The Society's aim is to bring his work to a wider audience by promoting and sponsoring performances and recordings of his compositions.
For over 80 years, there has been no Holst society, although his music has been promoted not only by the Holst Birthplace Trust in Cheltenham, but also by the Holst Foundation. The chairman of the management committee, Chris Cope, a committed advocate of British music for many years, recognised the omission and the need to support the life and works of Gustav Holst, and decided to set up the Holst Society, which was officially launched at the English Music Festival at the spring bank holiday weekend in 2017.
With the exception of his ever popular work, The Planets, live performances of Holst's works appear to be in decline, and he is sadly at risk of becoming known as a one-work composer. The one exception is the English Music Festival (http://www.englishmusicfestival.org.uk) which continues to perform Holst's music. The Society wishes to ensure that a wide selection of his music is played and sung throughout the UK by professional and amateur orchestras, choral societies and other music groups.
Since Holst's death over 80 years ago, much of his music has been recorded, but many gaps remain. The Society will also promote the recording of works as yet unrecorded, particularly the choral repertoire for which he was renowned.
The work of the Society will primarily be carried out by means of grants provided to support performances and recordings. Amateur groups can apply either for a financial grant or the free hire of certain orchestral music. Apply for a grant.
To find out more about supporting the Holst Society, please visit the Support Us page.
Launch of the Holst Society
The Holst Society was launched at the English Music Festival in May 2017.
The festival included a lecture by the Holst Society founder, Christopher Cope, as well as performances of several of Holst's works.
For more about the English Music Festival follow the website link below.