allow us to introduce ourselves

organizational history

The Bach Society of Minnesota (BSM) was formed in 1932 by University of Minnesota students wanting to sing the works of J.S. Bach, making it the oldest Bach Society in the US (other Bach Societies include: St. Louis, Houston, and the American Bach Society, based in Yale University). Over the course of its 90-year history, the artistic leadership passed from the University to the broader Minnesota artistic community. BSM has presented approximately 500 concerts, engaged some 10,000 musicians, and served over 150,000 audience members spanning six generations.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Bach Society of Minnesota is to build a diverse community of music lovers who perform, promote, and appreciate the music of J.S. Bach and those he inspired.

Core values

Our values focus on community, collaboration, and excellence. BSM strives to create respectful, successful relationships among musicians, audiences, students, and partner organizations.


Mattias Maute

Matthias Maute

Artistic Director, Conductor, Composer, Flautist

Two times JUNO Award winning conductor, composer, recorder and flute soloist Matthias Maute has achieved an international reputation. In 2016 he was named artistic director of the Bach Society of Minnesota and in 2019 of the professional choir Ensemble vocal Arts-Québec. Impressed by his artistic approach, The New York Times described the orchestra he conducts in Montreal, Ensemble Caprice, as being “an ensemble that encourages the listener to rehear the world.”

Maute’s recording of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos juxtaposed with Maute’s own arrangements of Preludes from Shostakovich’s Op. 87 was hailed by The New Yorker’s Alex Ross as standing out “for its fleet, characterful approach” and “its fresh, vibrant colors”.

Matthias Maute’s compositions are published by Breitkopf & Härtel, Amadeus, Moeck and Carus. In 2014 and 2015, Maute’s 1st violin concerto was performed by soloist Mark Fewer with the St. John’s Symphony and with I Musici de Montréal. Forty-nine movements of Matthias Maute’s compositions are featured in 49 videos on

Matthias Maute has made some twenty recordings on the Analekta, Vanguard Classics, Bella Musica, Dorian, Bridge and ATMA Classique labels. He is regularly invited to perform at major international festivals. Matthias Maute is co-artistic director of the Montreal Baroque Festival and artistic director of the Méénat Musica Concerts noncerto concert series. He currently teaches at l’Université de Montréal and McGill University.

Matthias Maute created Mini-Concerts Santé during the pandemic in 2020, delivering 9,000 Mini-Concerts Santé to 70,000 people in Montreal, Quebec and Canada while providing 3,000 hires of professional singers and musicians during difficult times which was awarded OPUS Award Musical Event of the year 2020.

Marco Real-d'Arbelles, Associate Artistic Director

Marco Real-d'Arbelles

Associate Artistic Director, Conductor, Violinist

Marco was appointed Associate Artistic Director of the Bach Society of Minnesota in 2018 where he works as conductor, violinist, and speaker bringing diverse communities together through music. He leads BSM’s successful “Bach with Friends” workshops and can be seen performing violin in solo, recital, chamber, and orchestral performances. 

Equally comfortable in modern and baroque performance, Marco recently led a production of Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea in collaboration with BSM, Bold North Baroque Opera, and University of Minnesota Opera Theatre, and a newly commissioned opera titled In Media Res with An Opera Theatre (AOT).  Marco was also Music Director for Opera on the Lake’s premiere production of Die Fledermaus and Bold North Baroque Opera’s La Dafne. Previous conducting postings and appearances include Winter Opera St. Louis, Chicago Summer Opera, Miami Classical Music Festival, CCM’s Opera Bootcamp, and Oberlin in Italy Opera Festival.

Born in Nicaragua, Marco was raised in Miami, Florida where he formally began studying violin at the age of 11. He was admitted to the Conservatory of Music at Lynn University in Boca Raton, FL earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees under the tutelage of Sergiu Schwartz and Carol Cole. While there, he also began studying conducting with Maestros Albert George Schram and Jon Robertson. He later trained with conducting masters Mark Gibson, Riccardo Frizza, Jorma Panula, and Ennio Nicotra.

After graduate studies, he went on to become Assistant Conductor of The Miami Symphony Orchestra where he led outreach, educational, and family concerts. He spent the summer of 2011 in Venezuela working in the world famous EL SISTEMA as assistant conductor. In 2014, the Chamber Philharmonic of Catalonia (Spain) awarded Marco the Conducting Prize. In 2016, he was given Special Recognition by the City of Doral (Florida) for his contributions to the arts and his work with youth.


Yunyue Liu

Executive Director, Pianist

A native of Shanghai, pianist Yunyue Liu, returns to the Bach Society of Minnesota (BSM) after taking time off to focus on her new role as a mother to a baby born during the pandemic year 2020. Originally appointed as Executive Director in 2017, she oversaw the Bach Society’s organizational growth and increased programming while expanding its partnerships in Minnesota and beyond. Under her leadership, she guided BSM on its first international appearance and a successful multi-national tour of Vivaldi’s Motezuma.

While working to expand BSM’s programs and profile, Dr. Liu maintained an active performing schedule and teaching studio. She performs frequently in the Twin Cities area including appearances at The Baroque Room and The Landmark Center, and in recitals for Art Song Minnesota, Source Song Festival, and Twin Cities Early Music Festival Series.

Dr. Liu has performed on three continents. In the summer of 2019, she toured China with soprano Han Ge, performing art song recitals and giving masterclasses in Chongqing, Wuhan, Changsha, and Chengdu. She is a frequent performer at Shanghai Concert Hall’s Afternoon Tea Concert Series, including a sold-out performance of Schubert’s Winterreise, marking the organization’s 1,400th special event. She has also performed at the Franz-Schubert-Institute in Austria, Oberlin at Italy Opera Festival in Arezzo, Italy, and Hot Springs Music Festival in Arkansas.

She received her Doctorate in Musical Arts in Collaborative Piano from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities under the guidance of Dr. Timothy Lovelace. She holds degrees from Shanghai Normal University, Lynn Conservatory of Music, and University of Tennessee – Knoxville.

board of directors

Jay Kurtz, President | Retired, IBM
Amy C Fistler, Vice President | Vice President for Advancement, United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities
Steven Savitt, Treasurer | Retired, Honeywell and ATK
Susan Doherty, Secretary | Retired, former Executive Director, Bach Society of Minnesota
Jonathan Morgan, Past President |Retired Attorney, Briggs and Morgan; Deputy Attorney General, Solicitor
General, State of Minnesota; Retired Vice President & General Counsel, M.A. Mortenson Company
Holly Fistler | Thrivent, Senior Counsel
David Gilberstadt | Retired, Educator, Entrepreneur, and Futurist
Karen Kustritz | Retired, Registered nurse
Andrea Leap | Former Executive Director, Bach Society of Minnesota
Richard Resch | Retired Professor, Kantor, Concordia Theological Seminary
Ex officio
Yunyue Liu, Executive Director, Bach Society of Minnesota
Matthias Maute, Artistic Director, Bach Society of Minnesota
Marcoantonio Real-d’Arbelles, Associate Artistic Director, Bach Society of Minnesota

Special Thanks to our Granting Partners

BSM’s activities are made possible by the voters of Minnesota through grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.

To all individual donors who have given so generously, we thank you!
Without your support, our continued efforts to explore the works of Bach and those he inspired would not be possible.