About our Festival
Since moving to North Somerset from London over 10 years ago violinists Simon and Liv-Marie Kodurand have been determined to find a meaningful way in which to contribute their skills and love of music to the local community. Whilst celebrating music making of the highest level, the Somerset International Festival of the Arts has community firmly at its core. Originally planned for launch in 2020, before being delayed by Covid, the festival now hopes to focus on building relationships within the local area and act as a symbol of pride for the residents of North Somerset.
Education is a driving force for the festival, and the hope is that there
will be projects and workshops throughout the year. Somerset is rich with musicians and artists of the highest calibre, many of which perform nationally and internationally with some of the country’s leading orchestras and ensembles. We are also fortunate to have close links with the Bristol Ensemble, the south west’s leading chamber orchestra, who will be ensemble in residence for our inaugural festival.
Simon Kodurand, Chair & Artistic Director
Equally at home on both the modern and baroque violin Simon pursues a varied career as violinist, presenter, and teacher. Simon was appointed Artistic Director of the Bristol Ensemble in 2021 and has directed a number of projects with them since joining the ensemble in 2011.
Starting the violin at the age of thirteen Simon went on to study at both the Royal College and Royal Academy of Music with the assistance of the Rowsby Woof scholarship.
Since his London debut at the Purcell Room in 2004 Simon has performed and recorded with most of the orchestras and period ensembles in the UK, and has made numerous live broadcasts on the BBC, as well as American, Mexican, Polish, and French radio.
As a soloist and director Simon has guest-led ensembles throughout the UK, recorded numerous commercial soundtracks for film and television, and performed as recitalist and concerto soloist at a number of diverse venues from St. John’s Smith Square, London and St. George’s, Bristol to a funeral parlour in New York.
As co-founder of the Florentine Arts Ensemble Simon has curated and presented events at the National Gallery in London on the relationship between music and art, as well as the Holburne Museum in Bath and at galleries across the UK.
Liv-Marie Kodurand, Artistic Director
She has been a prize winner at major competitions, and is greatly in demand as a solo recitalist at prestigious venues in London and throughout the U.K.
She has performed as a soloist and chamber musician at major international festivals and concert halls throughout the UK and Europe. Performance highlights include prestigious venues such as the Wigmore Hall, St Martin-in-the-Field’s, Royal Albert Hall, Bridgewater Hall, Cadogan Hall, St Johns Smith Square and the Queen Elizabeth Hall.
Liv-Marie is the founder and artistic director of the Florentine Arts Ensemble which combines music and the visual arts. The FAE have performed at venues across the UK including The National Portrait Gallery, The Fitzwilliam Museum, The Broadway Arts Festival, The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Dulwich Picture Gallery and The Holburne Museum alongside regular lecture recitals at The National Gallery on a wide range of themes.
Liv-Marie’s expressive and sophisticated playing style has won her critical acclaim, and her innovative approach to programming has established her as one of the most unique and versatile performers today.
She graduated from the Royal Academy of Music with distinction where she was awarded the Miriam Jenkins Scholarship, the Moir Carnegie Prize, the Homi Kanga Memorial Prize and the Delius Society Prize.