Dear Friends of the Montreal Bach Festival,
A warm welcome to the seventh edition of the Montreal Bach Festival! Once again it will feature the music of Johann Sebastian Bach alongside much-admired works by such masters as Antonio Vivaldi, Pietro Locatelli, Robert Schumann or Arvo Pärt. This diverse repertoire finds a setting in the many different concert venues which are scattered around the whole city. A reason for the enduring charm of Montreal's Bach Festival is certainly that it is present in many parts of the city, thus giving its public a chance to experience appealing new halls. Discover for yourself the intimate Bourgie Hall, the grandiose Basilique Notre-Dame or the elegant Maison Symphonique.
A reason for the enduring charm of Montreal's Bach Festival is certainly that it is present in a special highlight this year will be choral music. As a kind of "prelude" to the actual festival which opens a week later, we are extremely happy to present one of the world's foremost boys choirs, Leipzig's St. Thomas Boys Choir. Looking back on an unbroken 800-year old tradition, the Thomaner accompany to this day the religious services in St. Thomas Church, as they did centuries ago under their famous cantor. Truly, the Thomaner are the great Bach's own heirs.
This spectacular prologue sets the tone for further gems of choral literature. The St. Lawrence Choir will perform the three first cantatas of Bach's ever-popular Christmas Oratorio and we invite you to the first edition of the Bach Festival's Night of the Choirs, which will hopefully entice you to join here and there in a sing-along. Finally, our prestigious closing night will present Bach's masterpiece, the B minor Mass, in a much awaited performance by the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal with Maestro Kent Nagano, noted soloists and the OSM Chamber Choir.
But not all is choir! One of the mainstays of the Bach Festival is surely the yearly performance of the Goldberg Variations, taken in hand this year by Alexandre Tharaud, the brilliant young French pianist. Göran Söllscher, the master of the eleven-string guitar, will present a delightful programme which includes Bach's works for lute and cello. Concerto Köln, the acclaimed Baroque chamber ensemble, has programmed the beloved Brandenburg Concertos Nos 4 and 5 along with charming works by Evaristo Felice Dall'Abaco, Antonio Vivaldi and Pietro Antonio Locatelli. And the list of this year's exceptional artists goes on: Luc Beauséjour and Clavecin en concert, the organist Hans-Ola Ericsson, the pianist Ishay Shaer and many more.
Fall under the spell of the most beautiful music in the world!
The entire team of the Montreal Bach Festival thanks you for your loyal support and is looking forward to welcoming you again this year.