Led by Founder and Artistic Director Alexandra Scheibler, the first Montreal Bach Festival performances in 2005 attracted 3,500 people. Since then, the event has consistently brought together outstanding artists from Canada and abroad, becoming one of the city’s most popular musical events. Montreal audiences have responded positively, with growing attendance that topped 20,000 in 2018. Last year’s festival included 750 musicians and singers from around the world who came to Montreal to perform Bach’s beautiful music. Ticket sales were at 91% of capacity.

The Montreal Bach Festival will run from November 22 to December 7. In all, thirty events will take place at the Maison symphonique, Bourgie Hall, the Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours Chapel, Saint Joseph’s Oratory, the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul, Saint-Jean-Baptiste Church, the Bon-Pasteur Historic Chapel, Saint-Léon Church, Saint-Viateur Church, Saint-Pierre-Apôtre Church, and Gilles-Lefebvre concert Hall.

Bach Festival

The Brooklyn-based Knights Chamber Orchestra will perform the Bach Festival closing concert

The brand-new Off-Festival Bach will offer a wide range of free events in addition to the official program. Located in a new 3,000 square foot performance space on Saint-Laurent Boulevard near Place des Arts, Off-Festival Bach will host all the Off-events.

The Bach Festival’s opening concert will the AKAMUS Orchestra from Berlin on November 22nd and 23rd at Saint-Léon Church in Westmount. Since its beginnings, AKAMUS has been the leading chamber orchestra playing period instruments. Grammy-winning AKAMUS will perform The Brandenburg Concertos by J.S. Bach on November 22 and the Orchestral Suites by J.S. Bach on November 23.

The Grands Concerts

Nov. 26 – Jean Rondeau: French harpsichordist (Bourgie Hall)

Nov. 27 – Yaara Tal & Andreas Groethuysen: piano duo, Israel and Germany (Bourgie Hall)

Nov. 28 – Léon Berben and Johannes Pramsohler: harpsichord and violin, Netherlands and Italy (Chapelle de Notre-Dame-du-Bon-Secours)

Nov. 29 – Andrea Marcon: Italian conductor with Arion Baroque Orchestra (Church of Saint-Jean-Baptiste)

Nov. 30 – Aaron Pilsan: Austrian pianist (Chapelle Historique du Bon Pasteur)

Dec. 1 – Maurice Steger: Swiss flutist in a trio with Hille Perl, viola da gamba and Diego Ares, harpsichord (Bourgie Hall)

Dec. 2 – Christian-Pierre La Marca: French cellist (Bourgie Hall)

On December 5th and 6th, Reinhard Goebel will conduct the Orchestre Festival Bach Montréal (OFBM) with Bruno Delepelaire, principal cellist of the Berlin Philharmonic. Reinhard Goebel (a Bach medalist from the city of Leipzig) founded Musica Antiqua Köln, which he directed for 33 years. The December 5th Montreal concert will be Maestro Goebel’s third concert with the OFBM. The same concert will be presented on December 6th in partnership with Orford Music, at the Gilles-Lefebvre Concert Hall.

The closing concert will feature the Knights Chamber Orchestra from New York on December 7th at the Saint-Pierre-Apôtre Church. The Knights is much more than an orchestra; it’s a not-to-be-missed event. These twenty Brooklyn musicians have revolutionized the orchestral experience. They combine early music, great classics and the avant-garde, constantly keeping the audience on its toes. This will be the first Montreal performance of the Knights Chamber Orchestra.

The Annual Events

On November 16 at 2 pm, it’s the young audience’s turn with a concert for children conducted by Nicolas Ellis, a young and brilliant conductor who has had a meteoric rise to fame. Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul.

Also on November 16, from 4 pm to 10 pm, one of the Festival’s key events will take place: The Night of Choirs, during which the best amateur choirs in Montreal will perform. Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul.

The OSM and other local artists

On December 3 and 4, the OSM, under the direction of Kent Nagano, will perform Bach‘s Christmas Oratorio with Marie-Sophie Pollak, Wiebke Lehmkuhl, Philippe Sly at Maison symphonique.  Also scheduled are: Les Idées heureuses on Dec. 4, Pallade Musica on Nov. 25, Luc Beauséjour with Stéphane Tétreault, Aline Kutan, and Kerson Leong on Nov. 24.

For more detailed information about the Festival concerts and to purchase tickets, please visit: www.festivalbachmontreal.com You can also order by phone: 514-989-9668. Enjoy!

The Organ Concerts, Sundays at 3:30 pm at Saint Joseph’s Oratory

Nov. 3: Vincent Boucher, titular organist at the St-Joseph’s Oratory.
Nov. 10: Olivier Vernet, titular organist of the Cathedral of Monaco.
Nov. 17: Dexter Kennedy, Prix d’interprétation, Concours d’orgue de Chartres.
Nov. 24: Shin-Young Lee, 1st prize at the Concours Saint-François-de-Sales.
Dec. 1: Schola de l’Oratoire – Director Adam Wills Begley