Bach in the Subways 2024

March 21-31

Every year for Bach’s birthday a spontaneous, global community of musicians unites to sow the seeds for future generations of classical music lovers and share their joy and inspiration for their artform.

About Bach in the Subways

The power & beauty of Johann Sebastian Bach’s music consistently transcend social & musical boundaries and inspire deep appreciation & strong emotion. Yet sadly, in many countries audiences for Bach’s music, and classical music in general, continue to shrink.

In 2010, convinced this decline was because most people never experience live classical music, Dale Henderson began frequent performances of Bach’s Cello Suites in the subways of New York City.

photo: © Daniela Sessa

Feeling the experience was infinitely more powerful with money removed from the equation, Dale declined donations and instead offered audiences free postcards explaining that his intentions were to sow the seeds for future generations of classical music lovers.

His efforts, which he called “Bach in the Subways,” attracted appreciative attention from fans, other musicians, and the media.

For Bach’s 326th birthday on March 21, 2011 Dale invited other musicians to join him. The Bach in the Subways movement was born.

Every March the movement grew – from a single cellist playing alone in New York’s subways into a global phenomenon. By Bach’s 330th in 2015 thousands of musicians in 150 cities in 40 countries offered Bach’s music freely in public spaces, and now every year for Bach’s birthday musicians unite to bring Bach to people around the world.