The Oregon Bach Festival has long been hailed as one of the premier music festivals in the world, with thousands of visitors from many countries and internationally recognized performers. The festival was founded in 1970 by famed conductor Helmuth Rilling and former American Choral Directors Association President, Royce Saltzman. Since then, the festival has played host to a number of legendary performances and unparalleled line-ups. Not simply limited to the works of the Baroque master, the festival has gained significant notoriety through its premieres of new works, including Sven-David Sändstrom’s “Messiah,” Arvo Pärt’s “Litany,” “The Uncle from Boston,” a rediscovered work by Felix Mendelssohn, and Krzyztof Penderecki’s “Credo,” a recording which won the 2001 Grammy for Best Choral Performance.
The festival takes place over three weeks in June-July, with many performances at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts and Beall Concert Hall in Eugene. Subscriptions are available for a discount on single ticket prices, which are generally quite reasonable to begin with. Some larger performances take place at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall in Portland, an hour or so drive from Eugene.
Oregon Bach Festival Information
- Venues: Hult Center for the Performing Arts, Beall Concert Hall, Central Lutheran Church, First United Methodist Church, Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall (Portland), Tower Theatre (Bend, Oregon), and more
- Public Transportation: Varies by venue
- Handicapped Accessibility: Depends on venue, but generally good
- Performances/Programs: Around 30 ticketed events, extra free tickets and lectures throughout the festival
- Tickets: $17-63, no group discounts. Student tickets $10, youth tickets $12
- Subscriptions: Subscriptions are available for the Chamber Music@Beal Series and range from $96–$198
- Memberships: Member (up to $99); Donor ($100–$499); Patron ($500–$999); Sustainer ($1,000–$2,499); The Conductor’s Society ($2,500+). Depending on level, benefits include priority ticket ordering privileges; up to a 20% discount on ticket orders; a listing in the souvenir program book; passes to attend select rehearsals and receptions; a complimentary season poster; invitations to meet the musicians at the Patron Celebration; reserved seating at community events; access to wine and chocolates in the Conductor’s Society “Club Room”; a subscription to Conductor’s Notes, an inside view of the Bach Festival; and more.