The Vancouver Bach Festival is a series of live concerts and events with traditional music at various venues in Vancouver.
The festival features music by Johann Sebastian Bach, but also by other composers too including Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Strozzi and others. In 2022 the Vancouver Bach Festival took place in July and August. If you like classical music, you’ll love this series of concerts!
Concerts with Early Music Vancouver in the fall of 2022 include The Art of the Lute with Thomas Dunford on November 25th and The Odyssey of Krystof Harant on December 1st. Both of these concerts are at Christ Church Cathedral in downtown Vancouver. Also in December is Festive Cantatas: J.S. Bach Magnificat & Cantata BWV 110. It takes place at the Kay Meek Centre in West Vancouver on December 17th and at UBC’s Chan Centre on December 18th.
FESTIVE CANTATAS IN DECEMBER
Early Music Vancouver is the organization behind the Vancouver Bach Festival. They also host a couple of concerts in December in 2022.
Festive Cantatas: J.S. Bach Magnificat & Cantata BWV 110 takes place at the Kay Meek Centre in West Vancouver on Saturday, December 17th. A second performance happens on Sunday, December 18th, at the Chan Centre at UBC.
Bach’s Magnificat is a famous piece that’s popular at Christmas. The Lower Mainland performances feature JUNO Award-winning soprano Hélène Brunet as well as other renowned artists and Vancouver’s own Pacific Baroque Orchestra.
For tickets and more details about the concerts, visit the earlymusic.ca website.
Vancouver Bach Festival
Presented by Early Music Vancouver, the Vancouver Bach Festival is an exploration of traditional music. Each year the festival has a different theme. In 2022 it was “Scottish Baroque and Other Traditions”.
Celebrating its 6th year in 2022, the Vancouver Bach Festival ran from July 26th until August 6th. Performances featured a fusion of traditional Scottish music and Baroque masters. There were 13 concerts and 2 special events in 2022. All events took place in-person at a variety of venues. 2023 will likely be similar, but with exact details to be confirmed.
For tickets and full details about the event and its concerts, visit the official Vancouver Bach Festival website.
2022 Schedule of Events
The schedule for the 2022 Vancouver Bach Festival as of late May is listed below. Afternoon concerts ran for about an hour. Evening concerts, meanwhile, ran for up to about two hours. Exact times and details, however, may have varied.
Tuesday, July 26th
- Rondeau – EMV’s 2022 fundraising event took place at the Sage Bistro at the University of British Columbia. The formal event began at 6:00 pm and featured a dinner, performance and live auction hosted by former CBC host Bill Richardson. Regular admission cost $275 per person and reserving a table for 8 people cost about $1800.
Wednesday, July 27th
- Ebb and Flow – the festival’s opening concert was held at 7:30 pm at the Chan Centre which is located at 6265 Crescent Road in Vancouver. The event featured Alexander Weimann, Fiona T. Lam, David McGuinness and the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. This evening’s performances celebrated water. Early-bird tickets ranged from about $21 to $63.
For tickets and the festival’s official website visit earlymusic.bc.ca.
Thursday, July 28th
- Resounding Hildegard: Echoes of the Abbess in the Present Day – an Ensemble Arkora performance with special guest Lan Tung. The concert started at 7:30 pm at Christ Church Cathedral and offered new and old works with an emphasis on Hildegard von Bingen. Tickets cost between about $18 and $60.
- A Curious Collection of Tunes – a concert with traditional music from Scotland, Europe and Scandinavia as well as current folk compositions. Featured artists included David Greenberg, Kirsty Money and David McGuinness. The show took place at 1:00 pm at Christ Church Cathedral located at 690 Burrard Street. General admission cost up to about $24.
Friday, July 29th
- The Last Rose of Summer – an inspiring performance of Beethoven and both Fanny and Felix Mendelssohn’s works by Pierre-Antoine Tremblay and Alexander Weimann. This show was held at the Christ Church Cathedral at 690 Burrard Street. The concert began at 1:00 in the afternoon and early bird tickets cost up to $24.
- Les Nations – taking place at Christ Church Cathedral, this concert was a show by Contrasto Armonico and Marco Vitale. The performance started at 7:30 pm and featured the L’Impériale and L’Espagnole instrumental works. Admission cost between about $18 and $60.
Tuesday, August 2nd
- From The Court of Louis XIV to Shippagan – contrasting performances of Acadian folk songs and ‘airs de cour’ from France, performed by Suzie LeBlanc, Vincent Lauzer, Marie Nadeau-Tremblay and Sylvain Bergeron. The concert began at 1:00 in the afternoon at Christ Church Cathedral at 690 Burrard Street. General admission cost up to about $24 each.
- Armonico Tributo – the Baroque Orchestra Mentorship Programme performed the Georg Muffat piece with hints of French, Italian and Scottish sounds. The concert took place at Christ Church Cathedral starting at 7:30 pm. Admission cost between about $18 and $60.
Wednesday, August 3rd
- The Next Generation: Baroque Innovations – a concert by Ellen Torrie, Marie Nadeau-Tremblay and Sylvain Bergeron at Pyatt Hall which is located at 843 Seymour Street. This concert showcased emerging musicians as they paid tribute to classic pieces by Francesca Caccini, Barbara Strozzi, Henry Purcell and J.H. Schmelzer. The show started at 1:00 pm and tickets cost up to about $24.
- Fiddle & Figs Pub Night – a fun night at The Wolf & Hound pub which is located at 3167 West Broadway. The event started at 7:00 pm and featured food, drinks and live music from Scotland, Sweden and other regions.
Thursday, August 4th
- Bach & Tunes – Multiple Voices for One – a concert featuring solo violin and folk-style performances by David Greenberg. The music began at 1:00 in the afternoon at Christ Church Cathedral at 690 Burrard Street. General admission cost up to about $24 per person.
- Out of the Deep – the second show at Christ Church Cathedral started at 7:30 pm. This concert was directed by Jonathan Adams and Chloe Kim and featured ‘fantastical style’ music from a dark time in Italy. Tickets cost between about $18 and $60.
Friday, August 5th
- Bach: Four Sonatas and a Concerto – a program full of Bach’s pieces performed by Chloe Kim, Christina Mahler and Avi Stein. The concert took place at Christ Church Cathedral and began at 1:00 pm. General admission cost up to about $24 per person.
- Bach Kaleidoscope/Reimaginations – a concert featuring Bach’s adaptations of other composers through performances by Alexander Weimann, Christina Hutten, David McGuinness, Marco Vitale, Chloe Myers and David Greenberg. The event was held at the Chan Centre at 6265 Crescent Road in Vancouver. Tickets cost between $21 and $63.
Saturday, August 6th
- Tea-Table Miscellany – a special event held at noon at VanDusen Botanical Garden. It featured Scottish songs performed by Ellen Torrie, Isaiah Bell and more. It was directed by David McGuinness. General admission cost up to about $40 per person.
For tickets and full details visit the official Vancouver Bach Festival website.
The Vancouver Bach Festival is presented by Early Music Vancouver (EMV). The performing arts organization is one of the largest in all of North America. EMV has been a big part of Metro Vancouver’s cultural scene for over 50 years. The team hosts over 40 events each year, much to the delight of music-lovers in Metro Vancouver.
EMV presents artists from different parts of the world to local audiences. The organization also produces its own shows with their in-house band, known as the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. EMV tends to focus on music from the Baroque times in the 1800s.
The music organization hosts both online and in-person concerts throughout most of the year. The EMV 2022/23 Main Season offers 4 different series and 14 concerts from September 30th until May 23rd. There’s the Cathedral Series, Masterworks Series, Passport Series and the Pacific Baroque Orchestra Series. For more details about the upcoming season, click Early Music Events.
For more information about the festival and to buy tickets now, visit the official Vancouver Bach Festival website.
Other articles that may be of interest include the following:
- Choirs and Music in Vancouver
- Vancouver Bach Choir
- Vancouver Shows and Entertainment
- Lower Mainland Festivals and Events
(*) Photo Credits – The above photos of musicians are by the following photographers: David Greenberg (by JB Millot), David McGuinness (by Alex Woodward), Christina Mahler (by Sian Richards), Vincent Lauzer (by Julien Faug), Marco Vitale (by Mike Van Santvoord), Suzie LeBlanc (by Mark Mushet), and Sylvain Bergeron (by Guillaume D. Cyr)