BOOKING for the fourth Chipping Campden Music Festival in June has opened for a programme which comprises almost every form of classical music.

There will be piano, instrumental and song recitals as well as chamber music, an orchestral concert and a massive choral finale, all provided by the UK's leading musicians.

The festival opens on Saturday, June 4, with a recital given by the legendary pianist John Lill, who is preparing a very generous programme of music by Schumann, Brahms and Beethoven especially for the occasion.

Charlie Bennett, founder and organiser of the Festival, is himself a pianist who trained at the Royal College of Music in London, and so it is no surprise that the piano is well represented with further recitals by Mark Bebbington, who will be including beautiful pieces by Gloucestershire composer Ivor Gurney in his programme on Wednesday, June 8, and the sought-after Richard Meyrick on Friday, June 10.

Cellist Julian Lloyd-Webber is joined by pianist John Lenehan in a recital on Tuesday, June 7. On Tuesday, June 14, the brilliant violinist and current BBC Young Musician of the Year Nicola Benedetti will be making her Festival debut accompanied by pianist Alison Rhind. The baritone Christopher Maltman will be released from his duties at Glyndebourne on Sunday, June 12, to perform Schubert's Winterreise with Juliet Drake.

The Lindsay String Quartet, renowned for their interpretation of the music of Haydn, will be performing his Quartet No. 76 on Monday, June 6, in what is to be one of their last recitals before retirement in July, 2005, The Lindsays are joined by Thomas Hull for a performance of Mozart's sublime Clarinet Quintet, Another renowned chamber ensemble, The Leopold Trio, will combine forces with pianist Paul Lewis and bass player Graham Mitchell in Schubert's Trout Quintet.

Howard Shelley will be conducting the London Mozart Players from the keyboard on Monday. June 13, and the Festival concludes on Wednesday, June 15, with a performance of Bach's Mass in B Minor with The Choir of Tewkesbury Abbey School and the Orchestra of St John's, London, conducted by John Lubbock.

All concerts take place in the magnificent setting of St James' Church, and in addition the Festival includes two Jazz Suppers at the Cotswold House Hotel on Saturdays, June 4 and 11, and a Sunday afternoon of Music and Readings with the Leipziger Kammerkonzert and actors David and Ali Troughton in the gardens of Burnt Norton House on June 12.

The Festival remains committed to music education and provides a platform for advanced students from the UK's main music colleges, workshops for school children as well as heavily subsidised student tickets to all main events at just £1. Further information, bookings and brochures are available on 01386 849018 or visit the website