Welcome to our 113th Bethlehem Bach Festival!
Join us ~
May 14 & 15, 21 & 22, 2021
This season, perhaps more than ever, we are anticipating The Bethlehem Bach Festival in May, 2021 with great excitement and joy!
Not only will The Festival be welcomed back into many lives following the 2020 hiatus, we will also be celebrating our Artistic Director and Conductor Greg Funfgeld, as he conducts his final Bach Festival after an almost 40-year tenure as our leader.
Music is a transformative experience. The bonds it creates, the memories it evokes, the traditions it builds: each one remarkable and treasured. While we have been unable to share these experiences with our audience for several months, we look forward to the Festival when we will once again forge connections through music and embark on those beautiful journeys together.
Tickets are on sale NOW by phone or by mail only; all Festival tickets will be on sale ONLINE beginning in January, 2021.
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Thank you for your support and we’ll see you in Bethlehem
Please contact Renée James, Marketing Director, with any questions about our upcoming Festival: 610-866-4382 x 115 or email@example.com
FAQ’s about the 2021 Festival:
I bought tickets to the 2020 Festival. Are they valid for the 2021 Festival?
No, you must purchase 2021 tickets if you plan to attend the upcoming Festival. If you requested a voucher for your 2020 Festival tickets, you may use it toward other Bach Choir performances [including those at the 2021 Festival]. As in the past, priority seating in Packer Church will be assigned by Guarantor number for all orders placed by the December 7, 2020 deadline.
Why isn’t there a Bach at 4 Concert in Incarnation of Our Lord Church?
We are presenting the monumental Saint Matthew Passion at the upcoming Festival, with Part 1 at 4 pm and Part 2 at 8 pm. Both of these performances will take place in Packer Memorial Church on the Lehigh University Campus and you need only one ticket for both parts of the performance.
Is that also the reason there is no concert scheduled at 4 pm in the Saal of the Moravian Museum?
Yes, we are fully committed to producing an exquisite Saint Matthew Passion for our Festival attendees, presented in two parts, at 4 pm and at 8 pm, both in Packer Memorial Church.
The close of the Festival on Saturday evening – Zimmermann’s Coffee House – is not being offered in 2021. Will it be rescheduled?
We plan to hold festivities to honor our departing Artistic Director and Conductor Greg Funfgeld following the Mass in B Minor on Saturday. Recognizing that many people will want to offer congratulations to Greg and wish him well, we could not think of a better way to end the Festival each week.
Students will participate in our Festival as part of The Chaconne Project at the Ifor Jones Chamber Music Concert on Saturday, May 21. Please watch the website for a possible rescheduling of Zimmermann’s Coffee House.
Information about our 113th Bethlehem Bach Festival will continue to be updated as needed. We welcome you to the heart of our season and hope the glorious music offers you joy, comfort, inspiration and peace as only the music of J.S. Bach can.
Our largest event of the year takes place in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, on the campus of Lehigh University and on the historic grounds of the Moravian community. Glorious tradition, spirited performances, festival premieres…music for you. It’s our distinct pleasure to welcome so many of you to Bethlehem every year!
Our 112th Bethlehem Bach Festival in 2019 was – as ever – a time of reunions, annual renewal and contemplation and sharing this exquisite music as a community. Please make your plans – and your reservations! – now and be part of this community in 2021, sharing your passion for Bach and celebrating this uplifting season.
“It’s not only the history of the Festival but the personal history that so many of the performers and members of the audience have with it that gives the weekend a very wonderful and sentimental atmosphere.”
— Karen B., longtime Festival attendee
We invite you to make memorable musical connections in 2020! Here are a few snapshots from our 111th Bethlehem Bach Festival.
Festival Artists-in-Residence 2021
Paul Taylor Dance Company
Performance at the 2021 Festival:
Ifor Jones Chamber Music Concert, Saturday May 15 ONLY
Opus Number: 88
Music: Johann Sebastian Bach “Beauty is the only word for Brandenburgs…[which] celebrates the good things in life. Such a radiant, seamless flow of invention that the choreography seems an entirely natural way of moving to this music.” – Mary Clarke, Manchester [UK] Guardian
Opus Number: 61
Music: Johann Sebastian Bach
“The dancers, crashing wave upon wave into those falls, have a happy insane spirit that recalls a unique moment in American life – the time we did the school play or we were ready to drown at a swimming meet. The last time most of us were happy in that way.” – Arlene Croce, The New Yorker
The genesis of the Paul Taylor Dance Company occurred on May 30, 1954 in Manhattan, when dancemaker Paul Taylor first presented his choreography with five other dancers on the Lower East Side. That performance marked the beginning of 64 years of unrivaled creativity, and in the decades that followed, Mr. Taylor became a cultural icon and one of American history’s most celebrated artists, and was part of the pantheon that created American modern dance. Leading the Company that bears his name until his death in 2018, Mr. Taylor molded it into one of the preeminent performing ensembles in the world. Under the artistic direction of Taylor dancer Michael Novak since September 2018, the Company continues to perform throughout the world as well as at its New York City home – Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts – where it appears under the aegis of Paul Taylor American Modern Dance. The Taylor Company has traveled the globe many times over, bringing Mr. Taylor’s unrivaled repertoire to theaters in cultural capitals, on college campuses and in rural communities – and often to places modern dance had never been seen before. It has performed in more than 500 cities in 64 countries, representing the United States at arts festivals in more than 40 countries and touring extensively under the aegis of the U.S. Department of State. In 1997 the Company toured throughout India in celebration of that nation’s 50th Anniversary. In the summer of 2001 the Company toured in the People’s Republic of China and performed in six cities, four of which had never seen American modern dance before; the 2018 tour of China was the Company’s sixth tour of that nation. While continuing to garner international acclaim, the Paul Taylor Dance Company performs more than half of each touring season in cities throughout the United States. In celebration of the Company’s 50th Anniversary and 50 years of creativity, the Paul Taylor Dance Foundation presented Mr. Taylor’s works in all 50 States between March 2004 and November 2005. That tour underscored the Taylor Company’s historic role as one of the early touring companies of American modern dance. Beginning with its first television appearance for the Dance in America series in 1978, the Paul Taylor Dance Company has appeared on PBS in ten different programs. Among these were the 1992 Emmy Award-winning Speaking in Tongues, and The Wrecker’s Ball, which included Company B, Funny Papers, and A Field of Grass and was nominated for an Emmy in 1997. In 1999 the PBS American Masters series aired Dancemaker, the Academy Award-nominated documentary about Mr. Taylor and his Company. In 2013, PBS aired Paul Taylor Dance Company in Paris, featuring Brandenburgs and Beloved Renegade. The 2014 documentary Paul Taylor Creative Domain won critical and public acclaim for its examination of Mr. Taylor’s creative process, as it followed the famously private choreographer and his Company through the entire process of creating a work from initial concept to opening night. In 2019 the Paul Taylor Dance Company launched “Paul Taylor: Celebrate the Dancemaker,” a multi-year, international celebration of Mr. Taylor’s legacy and vision for the future of modern dance. The celebration will feature many of the choreographer’s greatest works, and will, according to Mr. Novak, “create an unprecedented opportunity for audiences to connect with Mr. Taylor’s history and the history of modern dance.”
Performance at the 2021 Festival:
Ifor Jones Chamber Music Concert, Saturday May 22 ONLY
Concerto in E Major for Guitar and Orchestra by Luigi Boccherini
Bach’s Trio Sonata No. 5 in C Major, BWV 529 with Charlotte Mattax Moersch
Guitarist Eliot Fisk is known worldwide as a charismatic performer famed for his adventurous and virtuosic repertoire. After nearly 50 years before the public he remains as his mentor Andres Segovia once wrote, “at the top line of our artistic world.” In the 2017-18 season Fisk performed his transcriptions of all six Bach solo cello Suites.
He has performed as a soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, Rochester Symphony, Orchestra of St. Lukes, Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, Pro Arte Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project (BMOP) and many others. He returns regularly to major concert series such as Stanford Lively Arts, Spivey Hall (Atlanta), Duke University Performances, Newman Center for the Performing Arts in Denver; Lincoln Center, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the 92nd Street Y in NYC, Da Camera Society of Houston, Da Camera Society of Los Angeles, San Francisco Chamber Music; Segovia Series at Pick-Staiger Hall at Northwestern University and many others overseas.
The repertoire of the classical guitar has been transformed through Fisk’s innumerable transcriptions (including works by Bach, Scarlatti, Haydn, Mozart, Paganini, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Granados, Albeniz and many others). Eliot Fisk was the last direct pupil of Andres Segovia and also studied interpretation with the legendary harpsichordist Ralph Kirkpatrick at Yale University. Directly following his own graduation in 1977, he founded the guitar department at the Yale School of Music.
Eliot Fisk is Professor at the Universität Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, where he teaches in 5 languages. He is the Founder and Artistic Director of Boston GuitarFest (www.bostonguitarfest.org) an annual cross-disciplinary event co-sponsored by the New England Conservatory and Northeastern University. In 2017 he created and served as Artistic Director of the first ever and immensely successful Salzburg Guitar Fest at the Universität Mozarteum in Salzburg.
First Weekend (May 14 & 15, 2021)
We hope you’ll join us for the opening weekend of our 113th Bethlehem Bach Festival! We look forward to sharing this glorious music with you in 2021!
Second Weekend (May 21 & 22, 2021)
Our 113th Bethlehem Bach Festival continues — join us for the second weekend of music and friendship!