Portland Bach Experience’s June Festival Returns After Pandemic Puts Pause on Live Concerts

Free Outdoor Classical Music ‘Carnival’ Kicks Off 10 Days of Performances


Portland, Maine, May 20, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- After cancelling last June’s festival because of the pandemic, Portland Bach Experience returns this year with 10 days of classical music events. Known for its innovative performances, unique productions and nationally-acclaimed artists, Portland Bach Experience will present more than a dozen virtual and live concerts with locations in Portland, Sanford and Brunswick. The festival runs from June 11 to June 20, 2021.

“Music has the power to heal because it taps into our shared human experiences and emotions – something we desperately need right now,” said Dr. Emily Isaacson, founder and artistic director. “For fifteen long months, we have hibernated, alone and silent. As we emerge from the pandemic, live performances will make us feel alive again by bringing us together and celebrating the endless capacity found in the human spirit. We want everyone to have access to that incredible experience, so we’ve designed the festival with something for everyone – free, family-friendly events, virtual concerts, indoor performances and outdoor musical experiences.”

Dr. Isaacson is planning a wide variety of musical experiences, including Handel Happy Hour, Bach and Beer, Suite Ride through Portland, orchestral concerts at larger locations with social distancing, interactive children’s events, and intimate brunch and art gallery salons.

The festival kicks off in Portland on Friday, June 11, with A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a free carnival-style concert and community celebration featuring over 20 local arts organizations and eateries. Stages throughout the Anderson Street corridor will showcase scenes from Portland Bach Experience’s Fairy Queen, performances by Ballet Bloom Project, Bunny Wonderland, 240 Strings and several other local performing arts organizations, as well as maker-spaces with kids activities. Blue Lobster Urban Winery, 1820 Wine, Lone Pine Brewing Company and Goodfire Brewing Company will have their tasting rooms open. The afternoon starts at 3 pm, with a parade for wood nymphs and fairies of all ages led by the Shoestring Theater’s giant puppets at 5 pm, a Fairy Queen drag show with live orchestra at 6 pm and a community dance party at 7 pm. Masks are required at the event and costumes are encouraged.

Tickets for the Portland Bach Experience June Festival are on sale at www.portlandbachexperience.com.

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About Portland Bach Experience

Portland Bach Experience (PBE) enlivens, strengthens, and connects communities by creating world-class, immersive classical music experiences for everyone, including full orchestral performances, intimate salons in art galleries, outdoor performances, educational lectures, and hands-on events for children. 

Portland Bach Experience began in 2017 as a week-long festival in June, and has expanded to include an Oktoberfest weekend and the Portland Nutcracker Experience in December, as well as other classical music events throughout the year. PBE is led by founder and artistic director Dr. Emily Isaacason, who was named the “Maine Artist of the Year” by the Maine Arts Commission and ArtsEngageME and one of “50 Mainers Leading the State” by Maine Magazine.

The Portland Bach Experience June Festival 2021 is funded in part by the Maine Office of Tourism, as well as the Maine Arts Commission, an independent state agency supported by the National Endowment for the Arts. Maine Magazine is a co-sponsor of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Portland Bach Experience is a program of Classical Uprising, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit committed to community development, creative expression, inclusivity, lifelong learning, and artistic excellence. 


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