Fox River Chamber Fest


The Fox River Chamber Fest is an annual celebration of chamber music during two weeks in late July.  Each year,  accomplished professionals perform four different concerts and also offer master classes to young area students. Each of the musicians is either originally from, or has a personal connection to, the Fox Cities.  They travel from across the United States to participate. 

The Fox River Chamber Fest was founded by Joseph Hauer, its artistic director, in 2017 as a means of giving back to the community in which he grew up.  Its goal is to make chamber music of the highest quality accessible, engaging and enriching for the community.  The event was generously hosted by The Arthur Krempin School of Music & Art during its first two years; in 2019, it became an ongoing program of The School.     

Fox River Chamber Fest performances are held at the Downtown Site of First English Lutheran Church, located on the corners of North and Drew Streets, in Appleton’s historic City Park neighborhood.  Its historic architecture and exceptional acoustics enhance the listening experience.  Receptions are offered in the Gathering Space at each performance, allowing guests the chance to informally engage the musicians and other guests in conversation.

Consistent with the mission of The School, the Fox River Chamber Fest is free of charge, thanks to the generosity of attendees and other generous benefactors in the community.  Their financial support and in-kind donations, along with the help of many volunteers each year, ensure that performances of the Fox River Chamber Fest remain free and accessible to all.


Musicians who have participated to date include:

  • Alex Ayers, violin
  • Catherine Chen, bassoon
  • April Dannelly-Schenk, cello
  • Jacob Ertl, piano
  • Joseph Hauer, piano
  • Paul Hauer, violin
  • Bryan Hayslett, cello
  • Miya Higashiyama, mezzo-soprano
  • Rebecca Johnson, viola
  • Austin Larson, horn
  • Michael McCarthy, violin
  • Matthew Michelic, viola
  • Anthony Padilla, piano
  • Wyatt Underhill, violin
  • Gregory Wang, piano



Volunteer support each year is essential to the success of the Fox River Chamber Fest.  Volunteers contribute in many different ways, and we value their support immensely! 

Some volunteers enjoy helping in advance of the event with media, communications, and fund raising.  Others volunteers host musicians, enhancing their experience as guests while they’re in town for the event. By providing housing, meals, and/or entertainment, they defray musicians’ costs and enable them to participate and perform.  Still other volunteers prefer to assist during the event itself – welcoming guests, distributing programs, providing and/or serving refreshments during the concert receptions. 

Regardless of the task, volunteers build this event and deliver its success while ensuring that the performances remain free of charge, accessible, and enjoyable for all.

To offer your support, please contact