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    Johann Sebastian Bach

    The St Matthew Passion, in which Bach gives full expression to his splendour and maturity

    Philippe Herreweghe
    Philippe Herreweghe © Wouter Maeckelberghe

    Julian Prégardien tenor (The Evangelist)
    Florian Boesch bass-baritone (The Christ)

    Choir Soloists I
    Dorothee Mields soprano
    Damien Guillon countertenor
    Reinoud Van Mechelen tenor
    Peter Kooij bass

    Choir Soloists II
    Grace Davidson soprano
    William Shelton countertenor
    Hugo Hymas tenor
    Tobias Berndt bass

    Philippe Herreweghe direction
    Collegium Vocale Gent Orchestra and Choir

    Sung in German with French and English subtitles

    In the early 18th century, a tradition of performing a major choral work on Good Friday based on the Passion of Christ became widespread in Germany. In the years between his St John Passion (1723-24) and St Matthew Passion (1727), Bach had continuously enriched his musical experience and brought a number of innovations to his second major Passion. He achieved the fullest possible sound by adding a third chorus and enhanced the variety of the recitative. Bach’s masterpiece rounded off in some respects the very long list of Passions in the history of music. Subsequent versions were, with few exceptions, not true Passions in the liturgical sense as Bach understood it, and paved the way for the oratorio.

    Production Théâtre des Champs-Elysées