10 Fast Facts

1. ENF was the idea of Donald and Louise MacDonald who co-founded it with Svend McEwan-Brown in 2004. It exists because we believe that in the joy and power of live music and its potential to transform lives and life.

2. ENF 2023  takes place 29 June – 2 July 2023 in Crail, Anstruther, Kilrenny, St Monans and St Andrews: it will be the 18th festival and we are fast approaching our 20th Birthday in 2025.

3. ENF is a registered charity, and raises funds from many sources to make the magic happen each year. These include grants from charitable trusts and foundations and – our biggest single source of income – private donations by our Patrons, who contribute around 50% of our annual budget. READ MORE HERE.

4. In any given year, our smallest project might be a concert in a tiny space for 30 people; our biggest project to date was Memorial Ground, a UK-wide commission reaching thousands of people throughout the UK and nearby Europe.

5. We reach for the stars, and regular visitors include pianists of the calibre of Christian Zacharias and Elisabeth Leonskaja, The Scottish Chamber Orchestra, The Tallis Scholars, the Belcea, Elias, Pavel Haas, Calidore and Castalian String Quartets, Theatre of Voices, Paul Hillier, Renaud Garcia-Fons and Sean Shibe.

6. Community and place matter to ENF. We connect with our community in many different ways, but most visibly through our annual BIG PROJECT. This is a commission to create a new work for community and professional musicians, inspired by the landscape, heritage or history of the area. Here’s a snapshot of what we did in 2022 – we hope to announce 2023’s project soon.

7. We nurture young artists and since 2015, the ENF Retreat has offered exceptional young musicians a matchless opportunity to spend time with outstanding world-class players, to learn both specific repertoire and also more general aspects of musical wisdom that will influence their work for years to come. Or to work on a project of special importance to them. Click on this link to read more about The Retreat.

8. Our audience, who enjoy our events and exhibitions annually, has grown from around 700 in 2005 to an estimated 25,000.

9.We have twice been awarded the Royal Philharmonic Society Award for Audience Development and won the Scottish New Music Award in 2019 for our Lost at Sea project.

10. Our venues are quirky, atmospheric and special: from churches, halls, an ex-nuclear bunker, caves, an RAF base, a Scout hall, stately homes and gardens, and – not least – the streets of the East Neuk…

Tenement Jazz, Live in Crail Harbour [photo by Neil Hanna]