We are thrilled to announce the appointment of nationally known conductor, composer and keyboardist Julian Wachner as Artistic Director of the Grand Rapids Bach Festival. The Artistic Director's position is sponsored by the Studio C - Loeks Family Chair.

Julian Wachner is Director of Music and the Arts at New York City’s famous Trinity Church Wall Street, a composer with more than 60 works to his credit, and a Grammy-nominated recording artist. Though he writes new music, Wachner is steeped in the music of the composer widely regarded as the greatest in this history of Western Classical Music.

“Bach has been a lifelong fascination and passion of mine,” said Wachner, who grew up in a musical family. “I started playing Bach before I could speak.”

The next Grand Rapids Bach Festival will be held March 18-23, 2019 during the Grand Rapids Symphony's 2018-19 season. Stay tuned for information coming at a later date.

The Grand Rapids Bach Festival also announces the inauguration of the Linn Maxwell Keller Distinguished Bach Musician Award, a vocal competition with a $10,000 prize that will be awarded in conjunction with the 2019 Grand Rapids Bach Festival. The prize is in memory of the late Linn Maxwell Keller, who founded the festival in 1997. 

More information on this award will be available in the near future. Please direct all inquiries to Larissa Fall at 616.454.9451 x111.

The Bach Festival is presented biannually, inspiring a multitude of community partnerships and unique performances. Throughout the festival, the Grand Rapids Symphony offers several inspirational events, encouraging patrons to create their own personal dialogue with the music of Bach, the hardworking church musician, talented organist and one of the most influential composers to ever live.

The Bach Festival was first organized in 1997 by mezzo-soprano Linn Maxwell Keller. The one-time event became a biennial community-wide Bach Festival in 2007 with Karl Hochreither, director of the prestigious Bach Choir of Berlin, as its music director. The ninth Grand Rapids Bach Festival presented a weeklong collection of performances in April 2013 with the Grand Rapids Symphony as its leading community partner. Over 20 free and ticketed concerts were performed in traditional, sacred and secular settings across the city.

Bach Festival Board of Directors
Lori Lee Curley - President | Thomas DeVries | Henry Duitman | David Hoekema | Will Preece | Ric Roane | Eric Strand