Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts is Cheltenham’s oldest Festival and is held in May each year.  The Festival’s main venue is Cheltenham Town Hall but we also hold classes at Bethesda Church and The Playhouse Theatre.

There are over 300 classes to chose from in three categories, Music, Dance and Drama and we encourage all ages to enter and join in the fun.

We provide a stage where children and adults can perform to their peers and receive constructive feedback from our eminent professional adjudicators.  The atmosphere is friendly and everyone is welcome to come along and provide encouragement.

The Festival is a charity set up to help with education in the arts.

We have a vibrant team of Volunteers and Friends who provide valuable support the Festival.  Do volunteer to help – there are many ways in which your services would be appreciated.

The 94th Festival will take place in May 2020.

Arts Award

The Festival is proud to be an Arts Award Supporter. We can offer the following opportunities to get involved: Volunteering as stewards Watching and reviewing performances Helping us collect feedback Finding out how the event is put together Taking part in workshops or to enter the Festival as a performer If you would like more …read More

General Rules

G1 The Competition shall be known as the “Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts”. G2 There is no geographical restriction for any of the Performers, except for the Keith Nutland Award. See special rules for Keith Nutland competition. G3 No persons gaining all or a principal part of their livelihood by music, speech, drama or dancing …read More

Our Team

The Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts is run by a dedicated group of individuals through a number of Committees that meet regularly throughout the year. Executive Committee Chairman Garth Barnes * Vice Chairman Janice Keen * Treasurer Allan Gillespie * 07974 810222 Hon. Secretary Brian Harding * 07850 153 183 Dance Secretary Carol McDowall * …read More


You can download any of our policies or view each policy statement here. Festival Constitution  Child Protection Policy Equal Opportunities Policy Data Protection Policy EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES POLICY STATEMENT The Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts is committed to an equal opportunities policy in respect of all aspects of its activities and functions. We actively promote equality …read More


_______________________________________________________ AGM and Coffee Morning everyone welcome – stewards, other volunteers, Friends, etc. on Saturday 30th November 2019 at Christchurch Hall Formal Notice of the Annual General Meeting will be emailed to all members in October _______________________________________________________ The Nutland Concert on Friday 3rd January 2020 at 3.00 pm Bethesda Church A wonderful afternoon of performances …read More


Cheltenham Town Hall The Town Hall is the home of the Festival where the majority of our events take place. It has a number of lovely rooms which suit the variety of performances; from the large Main Hall to the more intimate Pillar Room and Drawing Room. Built in the early 1900’s it provides an …read More


The Festival is supported by a number of local schools and we understand how important arts and culture is to developing well rounded individuals. The Arts Council England make the point well in their Create report: Taking part in arts and culture activities increases skills such as confidence, teamwork and communication. Skills that are invaluable …read More


The Festival started life as the CHELTENHAM COMPETITVE FESTIVAL, and was renamed the CHELTENHAM FESTIVAL OF PERFORMING ARTS in 2006. The new name reflects more accurately the range of disciplines covered by the Festival. It also echoes the performance skills of our Vice-Presidents – Dame Felicity Lott, Russell Maliphant and Phyllida Lloyd – all of …read More


During the 2018 Festival, we took the decision to end our practice of posting the names of winning performers on this website. We reached this decision because we felt that it was an unnecessary disclosure of personal information and might constitute a breach of Data Protection legislation (GDPR May 2018).  Therefore, competition results will no …read More