The Thuringian Bach Festival

The classical music event in Lutherland

The international Bach community knows it: the annual 3-weeks Thuringian Bach Festival. When spring arrives, it fills historic houses, large concert halls, churches and many an unexpected venue with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach.

Sometimes the music comes in a very classical style and sometimes in a surprising new guise. It flirts with other musical styles, overwhelms concertgoers with its richness of sound and shows that the great composer and his work are more present than ever.

Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Thuringia. This is where he grew up, took his first musical steps and revealed his talent. Many "first things" happened during his time in Thuringia: his first compositions, his first job as an organist and his first love. He married the latter in Dornheim near Arnstadt in 1707. The small village church where the wedding took place is still a special concert venue for the festival today. And so is the Bach Church in Arnstadt. It was here that a young, impetuous Bach sat at the organ and composed the world-famous Toccata and Fugue in D minor. The passion and vehemence of the work suited the temperamental twenty-year-old. The Bach memorial not far from the church depicts a young rebel rather than the seasoned musician of later times.

His last stop in his native Thuringia was Weimar. Here, Johann Sebastian had already climbed several rungs on the career ladder. He spent nine productive years in the service of the Duke of Weimar. Productive in both musical and private terms: his first six children were born in Weimar.

Stadtschloss in Weimar ©Alexander Michel, Thüringer Tourismus GmbH

Bach the man is just as much the focus of the festival as Bach the musical genius. Where else but in Thuringia can you get so close to him.



A Thuringian family named Bach

For more than 200 years the Bach family dominated the musical life of Thuringia. Many authentic places of family history have been preserved until the present day. A journeyto Bach places takes you to towns, palaces and village churches and can also happen by bicycle.

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