Music Connects Us

Notes from our Artistic Director

Today is May 1, a special day when public events around the world have traditionally included a celebration of the arts, often with plenty of singing and dancing in the streets…quite a different situation from what we all are experiencing right now.
Today was also planned to start the countdown to the opening concerts of Huron Waves Music Festival and that, too, as you know, has been set aside with a revised plan to mount as many of our original presentations as possible  – which really means no outdoor events – later this year. 
How the rhythm of our lives has changed!  We’re at a point where, to quote Premier Ford’s plan for Ontario in the months ahead, “large public gatherings such as concerts and sporting events will continue to be restricted for the foreseeable future.” 
Yet, if there is one point which has grown even stronger for me, it is that nothing can beat the worth of live music.   Yes, we can enjoy broadcast repeats of concerts and productions from the great stages of the world, and we can marvel at how effectively technology – thank you, Zoom – is uniting performers for ultra-special presentations. 
But all this makes me feel more strongly than ever that nothing beats live performances, and that’s why today, another countdown begins on the way to December 1 when Huron Waves resets its goal to bring great music performed live by outstanding Canadian and world musicians to southwest Ontario.   
From today till December I hope occasionally to keep in touch with our patrons and colleagues.  I’ll try to keep my enthusiasm under check and to keep these e-blasts interesting and worthwhile.  I plan to include news about my Huron Waves colleagues and also to invite them to take part in the messages. 
For instance, you should know that Paul Ciufo, the President of Huron Waves, will be co-hosting Saturday’s community internet portion of a national, virtual campaign to raise funds to support COVID-19 relief activities that include local foodbanks.  At 7pm tomorrow night we can catch the first portion of the Gala with Paul along with contributions by community musicians like Zurich pianist Aimee Rau, another Huron Waves founding board member and the co-facilitator of Huron Waves’ summer Youth Arts Immersion program.  The virtual show, organised by the Grand Bend Community Foundation and the Grand Bend Rotary Club, is called Grand Bend Area Stay at Home Gala.
In future, I might also give some shout-outs to local merchants who are providing services under greatly reduced conditions.  Last Saturday night, for instance, I drove to Hessenland Country Inn in St. Joseph to pick up two schnitzel dinners and a little libation from their new Schatz Winery where Liz and Frank Ihrig  (who just happen to be terrific Huron Waves supporters)  bring out pre-ordered meals at the Inn’s kitchen door for Friday and Saturday pickups.  I’d made my selections online at the foot of their takeout menu. Delicious, and well worth the drive along the Bluewater Highway to St. Joseph!
Definitely in upcoming e-blasts I’ll be outlining the programming and ticket sale dates as these are confirmed for Huron Waves shows in December.  Already it’s exciting to know that The Kingdom Choir is returning to North America – and only to Huron Waves for the Canadian portion of their tour – on December 10 & 11.   
Thanks for reading my first e-blast.  I hope you’ll agree with me that Music does indeed connect us in so many different ways.  And let’s all keep in touch as Huron Waves boosters.
John A. Miller, Artistic Director                                                                              May 1, 2020

CANCELLED: Youth Arts Immersion Camp 2020


Join three professional artists for five days of fun at the Huron Waves Music Festival Youth Arts Immersion Camp, ON the High Cs!, from July 6 to July 10, 2020, from 9 am to 4 pm daily at the South Huron Recreation Centre.

Campers will explore the music of musicals such as Pirates of Penzance, H.M.S. Pinafore, Treasure Island and Peter Pan, along with acting, and creating art all based on sailing the high seas! 

Registration is $180, but we ask that you hang on to your money until we know for sure that we’ve made it through the COVID-19 pandemic and can proceed as planned. For now, just contact OR call Catherine 519-234-6711 to register only. We’d love to confirm your child’s attendance in advance so that we can do some planning.

Registered campers ages 12 to 14 are invited to attend our leaders in training workshop on Friday, July 3. Cost $50. Level 1 – learn to lead games and activities, team building exercises. Level 2 – keeping campers safe, problem solving skills  Campers who complete the training will be given the opportunity to use those skills during camp week under the watchful guidance of our camp leaders.

File photo from 2019 camp.

We Invite You to Stand By Us!

We hope that you are safe and well, and will be excited to hear the update on the Huron Waves Music Festival.
The coronavirus scourge has been affecting us all, and that includes plans for the first season of the Music Festival.   With over two months to go before we had to suspend sales and still a sales figure approaching 400 tickets for The Kingdom Choir’s concerts, we believe there is a healthy appetite for music in south-western Ontario so we are determined to reschedule the dates and artists of the festival for December 1 to 11, this year. In fact, we’re going to base the name of our revised plans on one of the Choir’s own songs; they famously sing Stand By Me and we’re going to call our new plans Stand By Us!
It’s good news for us to tell you that along with Canadian musicians, The Kingdom Choir is also reorganising its North American tour and adding seasonal music to its repertoire. The Choir will be with us in Huron County during our new dates! They will perform Dec. 10 and Dec. 11.
As this year moves along and especially in the autumn, closer to these dates, we will keep in touch with you with more precise details about our program.  
We all need good news to help us get through the challenges of these days of isolation and anxiety. I hope you will feel, as we do, that Huron Waves’ plans to mount a festival of outstanding music that includes The Kingdom Choir can be, at least for now, the kind of positive, long-range thinking we all need to hear about.
Be safe and healthy,


HURON WAVES MUSIC FESTIVAL (formerly Bach Music Festival of Canada)


Whiskey Jack – Stories and Songs of Stompin’ Tom

Friday March 1, 2019 7:30pm

South Huron Rec Centre –  Exeter, Ontario

Tickets (non-refundable) $35 in advance or $40 at the door.

For 4 decades, Whiskey Jack has been performing their unique brand of Canadian country music coast to coast. In the 1980’s they were featured on CBC TV’s Tommy Hunter Show. Watching the Whiskey Jack segment (The Ol’ Black Porch) every Friday night, the retired Stompin’ Tom Connors would become an avid Whiskey Jack fan, enjoying the humour and the amazing musicianship, along with 2 million of his fellow Canadians. When Stompin’ Tom resumed his career after 13 years away, he called Whiskey Jack and invited them to join him in the studio to record his acclaimed album, “Dr. Stompin’ Tom…Eh?” These two Canadian musical institutions would continue to perform and record together until Tom’s death in 2014. Those years with Stompin’ Tom were the seeds that blossomed into the show they tour with today, Stories and Songs of Stompin’ Tom.

New name for Huron’s eclectic music festival – Huron Waves Music Festival!

Bach Music Festival of Canada has recently been renamed to reflect the eclectic nature of the festival and to celebrate the beautiful area where it takes place. Now known as “Huron Waves Music Festival”, the board of directors will continue to offer quality performances of known and upcoming artists of various genres and will continue to provide the community with opportunities for experiencing art through entertainment and education.

Get Creative Have Fun at Youth Arts Camp July 9 – 13

Girls and boys ages 8 – 14 will act, sing, write, paint, and make new friends at the Festival’s Youth Arts Camp, July 9 – 13, 2018!

This summer campers will bring Huron County history to life through drama, music, and visual art.

Talented instructors Aimee Rau, Catherine Weber, and Stacy Smith will assist and inspire the campers.

The camp runs 9am – 4pm daily at the Exeter Christian Reformed Church.

The cost is $250 plus HST ($282.50).

For more information please email or call 519-235-0629





Youth Arts Camp 2018 & The Future of the Festival

We are pleased to announce that the Bach Festival Youth Arts Immersion Camp will be held in July 2018! Stay tuned for more details soon.

Meanwhile plans are underway for the future of the Festival. It is a time of transition for the Festival, and the members of the Board of Directors are busily creating a new vision and direction. We look forward to unveiling our plans in the near future.

The Entertainers!



John Avey and Marlene Fagan may have begun their careers with Bach, but for our opening concert, they travel further down their music journeys. ‘Just Between Friends’ open the Festival with Broadway and Show tune favourites – the perfect program for a summer evening.

Gershwin, Stern, Jenkins, Lerner & Loewe, Rodgers & Hammerstein…you won’t want to miss it! Here are a few of the pieces you will hear:

It Ain’t Necessarily So; Time after Time; Fly Me to the Moon; If I Were a Rich Man; Once Upon a Time.

See you at the Show!

Popular Lunch Hour Series Returns!

Noon Hour concerts return! Plan to spend your lunch hour at one of the 3 concerts held during the Bach Festival.


Friday July 7th arrive at Trivitt Memorial Anglican Church by Noon with your lunch in hand for the ‘PIANO IMPROV SEMINAR’ featuring:

Stephen Holowitz, Marlene Fagan and David Buckley. Three accomplished musicians exploring their unique approaches to the piano!


Saturday July 8th arrive at Trivitt Memorial Anglican Church by Noon with your lunch in hand for a special performance by ‘thatotherchoir‘, conducted by Louise Dockstader‘


Saturday July 15th arrive at Trivitt Memorial Anglican Church by Noon with your lunch in hand for an organ recital featuring Dr. Richard Heinzle!


Check on the Website Events Page for further details on these talented musicians!