Your donation will go directly to the organization specified on this page.
Your donation will be directed to this charity’s endowment fund, established at the Niagara Community Foundation.
Music Niagara presents world-class, diverse music experiences in unique and intimate settings that connect the artistic community, educate and inspire audiences and artists, and enhance Niagara-on-the-Lake’s rich heritage and culture.
Music Niagara was founded around the key tenets of developing support systems for artists - through performance spaces, education, and networking opportunities - while at the same time facilitating concrete opportunities to create jobs as a result of this increased artistic activity. The organization adheres to the following core values to ensure its mission to educate and inspire is carried forward as effectively as possible.
Quality & Cultural Affordability: We believe that everyone should have access to high quality musical performances, and in partnership with our donors, sponsors and volunteers we offer affordable and meaningful musical experiences.
Diversity & Heritage: We promote diverse Canadian artists and heritage, with an emphasis on classical music.
Education: We are committed to promoting music education by offering young and emerging artists with performance and training, and providing audiences with context and meaning through program notes, lectures/readings and creative presentations.
Innovation: We value creativity and celebrate innovation.
Collaboration: We believe that by working in collaboration with community partners we can enrich the cultural life of the community and its visitors.
Music Niagara is a not-for-profit, registered charitable organization founded in 1992 by Artistic Director Atis Bankas, who came to Niagara-on-the-Lake with the dream of founding a music school and summer music festival. He discovered the perfect location – one of Canada’s most beautiful towns on the shores of Lake Ontario at the mouth of the magnificent Niagara River, a bucolic area of great historical significance and rich cultural history, surrounded by ripe orchards and lush vineyards.
Run by one full-time employee, the Artistic Director, a Board of 12 and over 100 volunteers, Music Niagara evolved into a world-class summer music festival that runs 4-6 weeks, featuring Canadian and international musicians performing a diverse variety of genres – chamber music, choral, orchestral, contemporary, country, folk, jazz – stimulating, audiences with the diversity of its programs and artists.
In 2014, the Music Niagara Performance Academy was established, adding a unique and creative element to support young performers. During the festival, the Academy, with resources from the Shaw Festival, provides innovative specialized performance training for promising young musicians, pairing pupils with senior members of Niagara’s performing arts community to mentor and guide their on-stage and industry presence.
During the pandemic, Music Niagara made a successful online pivot and launched a virtual "At Home Series", which showcased New Generation Artists, employed and engaged Ontario musicians and Niagara students, and simultaneously introduced a new virtual Performance Academy featuring new Junior Faculty that taught and mentored younger musicians through Zoom.