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!



Concert to be dedicated to Gerry Smith

It is with great sadness we announce the sudden passing of Gerry Smith. This concert will go ahead, with Canadian fiddling champion Shane Cook and the Bach Festival, dedicating this performance to Gerry and his family. 

Gerry Smith & His Legacy: When Shane was approached about coming to Exeter, he said that he had never performed here before, and would be delighted to come.  In the first meeting to discuss Shane coming to Exeter, a wonderful human interest story came to light. Shane enquired if Fagan knew of Gerry Smith, a former champion fiddler living in Exeter.  Shane talked glowingly of Gerry’s accomplishments, and told the story that as a young boy, Shane’s father purchased Shane’s first full sized violin from Gerry, and a lifelong friendship developed.  Gerry had already been approached to perform in the Festival, and upon hearing this, Shane ecstatically enquired of the possibility of the two friends team up to perform together!!!    Sponsored by Crabby Joe’s Restaurant, this featured performance this coming July promises to be one of great musicianship and respect for one champion to another.

Canadian Shane Cook rates at the top of the short list of the finest fiddlers in the world today” says the Canadian Fiddlers’ Hall of Fame.

Shane has distinguished himself as a leading exponent of the Canadian old-time fiddle tradition as well as a multi-instrumentalist who holds a deep mastery of musical styles ranging from Irish and Scottish to French-Canadian, Texan, and Bluegrass. After a concert at The Opera House in Boston, the Boston Herald proclaimed “Shane Cook’s Celtic fiddling was enough to break hearts.”

In 2006, Shane retired from competitive fiddling as one of Canada’s most highly awarded fiddlers. He is a three-time Canadian Open National Champion, a three-time Canadian Grand Masters Champion, a Grand North American Champion, and is the only foreign fiddler to win the US Grand National Championship, a feat he accomplished at just 17 years of age.

Shane’s most recent recognition came in 2012 when he received a CBC Galaxie Rising Star Award as well as a Young Tradition Bearer Award, granted by the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival for his dedication and contribution to traditional and roots music in Canada.


Our Home and Native Land!

Bach Festival 2017 Season Announcement

Artistic Director Gerald Fagan, O Ont, OC

A summer celebrating Canadian talent from at home and abroad.

The Bach Music Festival of Canada is excited to announce its stellar line-up of artists, concerts, and programs for the 2017 Summer Season! Back after its 3rd successful season in 2015, the Festival continues to build on its relationships with Canada’s most renowned and respected artists while cultivating roots in the heart of Huron County, Ontario.

The Thursday July 6th Opening concert features legendary Broadway and Concert/Opera star, baritone John Avey in concert with the incomparable pianist Marlene Fagan, presenting ‘Just Between Friends’. Avey & Fagan are a fitting launch for the 2017 season, as their partnership embodies the friendship, artistry and community spirit for which the Bach Festival has become known.

Lara St John and Matt Herskowitz return after launching the inaugural Festival in 2011, bringing International star status with a rare intimate appearance Sunday July 9th in an afternoon concert that is sure to sell-out. Artistic Director Gerald Fagan states, “it is a rare honour to have Ms. St John and Mr. Herskowitz return to the Bach Festival for a 2nd performance! This speaks to their love of performing in their home country, and to this community’s signature style of warmly appreciating the artists who perform in Exeter.”

Other Guest Artists include the extraordinary Spanish pianist Leopoldo Erice; cellist Cameron Crozman playing on the Bonjour Stradivarius Cello and the Shaw Adam cello bow generously on loan from the Canada Council for the Arts Instrumetn Bank; World Champion fiddling sensation Shane Cook with master fiddler Gerry Smith; and the Bach Festival resident chamber choir Chor Amica under the direction of Artistic Director Gerald Fagan. A Summer Youth Arts program ensures the tradition of arts education continues!

The Sunday July 16th Closing Gala presentation ‘Our Home and Native Land’, features soloists, orchestra, the Junior Amabile Youth Singers and a mass choir equaling over 150 performers in total with Artistic Director Gerald Fagan conducting and Canadian culture afficianado James Reaney Jr, hosting. Performing traditional Canadian music as well as four newly commissioned works specifically for Canada’s birthday, this afternoon performance promises to be the most memorable birthday celebration for our great country! This final gala concert will take place at the South Huron Rec Centre, as we transform this space into a concert hall – truly in the heart of the community.

Bach Music Festival of Canada

July 6 – 16, 2017

Exeter Ontario Canada

Our Home & Native Land

Our 2017 brochure is attached! Full details about the Bach Music Festival of Canada are found on our website  And you can always join us on Face book.

Photos, Interviews and Quotes available by contacting the Festival at 519 235-2622 or by email at

Standing Ovation & Capacity Crowd Open the Festival!

The Fourth Bach Music Festival of Canada is officially opened – and what an opening night it was!

John Avey & Marlene Fagan delighted the full house with gorgeous renditions of show favourites. Warmth, humour, friendship and memories set the tone for the Festival concerts yet to come.

It’s going to be a fabulous weekend of concerts with Leopoldo Erice, Spanish pianist, on tap tonight. For full information check out our website, Facebook or call our Box Office at 519 235 2622.

Here’s What You’ve Been Waiting For!


Artistic Director Gerald Fagan, and the Board of the Bach Festival are happy to announce that preparations for the Bach Festival 2017 are progressing rapidly to provide South Huron and the rest of Ontario with a great new concept for this coming July!!!   Scheduled from July 6 to 16, the Festival is being labelled OUR HOME AND NATIVE LAND, profiling an all-star cast of some of this Province’s finest musicians.

The Festival is proud to announce a great mix of outstanding talent (including fine local musicians).  Some of the leading talents include the return of virtuoso pianist Leopold Erice, a first time appearance in South Huron of world champion fiddler Shane Cook (performing with Exeter legend Jerry Smith), and world class cellist Cameron Crozman (flying in from Paris France with his 12 million dollar Stradivarius cello). The Grand Opening performance will feature baritone John Avey (Metropolitan Opera) with the legendary pianist Marlene Fagan….  again delighting audiences with popular Broadway music of the 60s and 70s.

The Gala Closing performance (Sunday afternoon July 16) will be a blockbuster performance featuring over 200 musicians.  Four icon solo singers;  Leslie Fagan (soprano),   Anita Krause (alto),  Colin Ainsworth (tenor), and John Avey (bass);  will headline the Festival Massed Choir (with core choirs  CHOR AMICA of London,  the South Huron Choir, “that other choir”,  and choristers representing over 25 choral groups from across Ontario.  All of these singers will perform with the outstanding Festival Symphony Orchestra (Concert Master Sig Martin of Grand Bend).  The Gala Closing performance is a departure from the past in every way.  Four new Canadian songs will have their first performance during the concert, as four Ontario composers have been commissioned to write new material;   all of which will be heard for the first time at the Gala.

Local musicians continue to have a prominence in July. Jeff Smallman (Hensall)  is one of the commissioned composers;   Jerry Smith (former Fiddling Champion)  is performing with Shane Cook;   Dr. Richard Heinzle (Organist at Trivitt Anglican Church) is giving an organ recital;  and The South Huron Choir is a core group  in the Gala closing ceremonies.    Coming soon to the Times Advocate will be the announcement of the names of local youth taking part ……a great feature at the last three Bach Festivals.

So keep those dates (July 6 to 16) set aside for listening to great music as Exeter opens its doors to the fourth exciting edition of the Bach Festival!!

Thank you from Gerald Fagan

Bach Festival Artistic Director Thanks Community!

In two weeks time, my wife Marlene and I travel to Ottawa for the ceremony whereby I receive the Order of Canada. Although I am proud of this achievement, at the same time I am very humble at being chosen. One realizes early in life, that one’s achievements are because of the kindness of many people met along the way. It is with this knowledge, that I thank the numerous people from Exeter and South Huron who were front and centre in offering my name for consideration to the Governor General. I will never know exactly who you were, but I do know that it was because of your actions that we are travelling to Ottawa soon.

When Friedhelm Hoffmann, the Chairman of the Board, and I thought of the Bach Festival situating in Exeter, we were met with much skepticism from sources outside the area. For the last seven years, the efforts of countless performers, politicians, donors, businesses and volunteers have made it possible to make The Bach Music Festival of Canada a reality. The number of folk is in the hundreds, if not thousands who have either participated or attended performances . This I did not accomplish; it was the efforts of good people working together which made the Festival so successful.

So now , the hard working Board of Directors is gearing up for Festival 2017, which we have named “OUR HOME AND NATIVE LAND”. This July we will present an all Canadian cast of performers (including many world class musicians, and great local artists). As the weeks go by, exciting news of singers and players coming to South Huron will be publicized. It promises to be a thrilling time in July as we celebrate Canada and Ontario’s Anniversary.

Thank you all for the kindness shown to me and my family in the time spent in South Huron…..these are memories never forgotten.

Gerald Fagan C.M., O.Ont.

Artistic Director,

The Bach Music Festival of Canada