Watch CBS News

Bach In The Subways, Serenade Philly Commuters To Honor Master Composer

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Commuters at two big SEPTA hubs were serenaded, in honor of one of classical music's most revered figures, on his 332nd birthday!

Bach in the Subways was started by cellist Dale Henderson in the New York City subway system in 2010, when he became convinced that the decline in classical music audiences was largely because many never get a chance to experience it.


So, he started playing in New York subways, declining money as he performed Johann Sebastian Bach's Cello Suites.

"The subways are such an all-inclusive environment, an american democracy," said Henderson.

Bach in the Subways
Credit: Steve Tawa

Fast forward to 2017, and he says Bach in the Subways is performed on his birthday in 140 cities in 40 countries.

At Suburban Station in Philadelphia, on baroque instruments, Ann Bies playing recorder and flute and Anne Schuster Hunter, on bassoon, are part of the duo they call "Noje." Hunter says Bach was a master composer.:

"'They wrote this music to go straight to your heart. and it really does," said Hunter.

Musicians from the Philadelphia Orchestra performed later at Jefferson Station.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.