We are delighted to welcome these eminent adjudicators to our festival in November.

Richard Deering FTCL, GTCL, LRAM, ARCM, PGCA (piano)
Richard DeeringRichard has been an adjudicator member of the British and International Federation of Festivals for well over 30 years, adjudicating at an average of 12 festivals a year, including many overseas festivals, as a piano or brass specialist and generalist. Although no longer active as a performing brass player he has given piano performances – as soloist and accompanist – in over 90 countries and has held teaching positions in establishments such as London College of Music, Trinity College of Music, Middlesex University, Cambridge University, Auckland University and New York State University. Richard was also an Adviser to the London Arts Board on contemporary music and jazz. His Federation work included serving on the Central Board of Trustees, Vice-Chair of the Adjudicator’s Council and with the administration of the PGCA qualification. Currently he is the Chair of Trustees of Croydon Performing Arts Festival and, was honoured, by being elected as a BIFF Fellow in 2012. Richard is also a high-ranking cricket umpire and season ticket holder at Sutton United Football Club.

Jenny Thornton AGSM (teaching), ALAM (Acting and Public Speaking),Certificate in Education, LISTD, CDE (Dance) (speech and drama)
Jenny ThorntonJenny trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama gaining awards for Character Acting and Most Promising Teacher.  Jenny has led the Performing Arts Teams in a large Comprehensive, been an Assistant Principal for Edexcel, LAMDA examiner and now enjoys running her own Performance Centre with ages from 4 years to adults delivering drama, dance and musical theatre and also writing. Her play called “Gone” gained a Commended when performed at The Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond as did her most recent play “Young Love”.  She was delighted when LAMDA chose two of her pieces for their new acting anthology. Her most recent teaching experience is working in a state school as a peripatetic teacher as part of her “Outreach” programme extending the work of the Richmond Festival for which she is the secretary.



Kay Tucker AGSM, ARCM, LTCL, PGCA, PGCE, MISM (instrumental)
Kay TuckerKay Tucker was born in Sheffield, Yorkshire and began studies on the cello at the age of 12, continuing studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Her portfolio career has combined teaching and adjudicating with performing as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral player.
Since 1998, Kay has been in popular demand as an adjudicator throughout the UK, having worked at well over 200 festivals including the National Festival of Music for Youth. ‘Encouragement’ is a key word in all aspects of Kay’s work and she has great joy in working alongside musicians of all ages, particularly the very young.
Kay’s passion for teaching led her to develop an early years strings & general musicianship system known as ‘Stringbabies’. Since its inception in 2004, Stringbabies has become well established and accepted as a leading approach in strings teaching (surprisingly to all ages!) and is being delivered throughout the UK and abroad in individual teaching practices, schools and music services.
In 2016, Musicbabies for Recorder was published, being the first adaptation of Stringbabies for a non-stringed instrument.
Kay is currently working in partnership with Victoria College Examinations to develop a bespoke Stringbabies Award for beginner string players.
In 2013 and 2014, Stringbabies was shortlisted for the Inaugural Rhinegold Music Teachers Awards for Excellence in music education. In 2014 Kay was also a finalist in the BBC Community Heroes Awards in Education in respect of her work in developing Stringbabies.
Over recent years, Kay worked as a consultant to Trinity Guildhall, selecting and co-selecting repertoire for graded exams and diplomas.
Kay is a Trustee and member of the Executive council of the European String Teachers’ Association (ESTA) as well as chairman of Horsham Performers’ Platform.
Kay became an adjudicator member of the British and International Federation of Festivals in 1997 and undertook the Post-graduate Certificate in Adjudication in 1999/2000.

Jane Wilkinson BMus(Hons) (RSAMD) Grad DipRCM(vocal and choral)
Jane WilkinsonJane trained as a soprano at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and then at the Royal College of Music where she won many competitions and awards. She performs solo art song recitals across the country and has toured South Africa, Europe and America. She is Head of Singing at Chelsea Academy and singing tutor at Imperial College, London. She is a former singing teacher at St Cecilia’s School, Wandsworth and Flora Gardens School, Hammersmith. Jane is a former member of the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain and now conducts New Malden Voices and New Malden Youth Choir. Jane has premiered many contemporary operas and frequently works alongside composers on new works for the stage and for recordings. She has performed oratorios and concerts at Edinburgh Festival, Royal Albert Hall and many other distinguished venues. Jane leads vocal masterclasses and workshops internationally and often runs ‘audition technique’ days for aspiring singers. Jane has taught singers of all ages and standards and has a great passion for educating. Her voice has featured on a wide variety of albums and recordings from children’s repertoire to contemporary folk rock. Jane has been adjudicating for the British and International Federation of Festivals since 2012.