Ever since its first performance in Leipzig on Good Friday 1724, J.S. Bach’s setting of the St John Passion BWV 245, has been a mainstay of the Lenten musical calendar in both concert hall and church. Bach’s emotive, Baroque setting recounts the harrowing last days of Jesus of Nazareth.
A solo narrative of the events leading up to Christ’s brutal crucifixion is interspersed with famous chorales, choruses and arias to dramatic and impossibly beautiful effect. There is the majestic opening chorus Herr unser Herrscher, the devotion of Ich folge dir gleichfalls, the passion of In meines Herzens Grunde, and the soothing optimism of Ruht wohl.
The Choir of St James’ King Street is conducted by St James’ Director of Music, Warren Trevelyan-Jones, with the Australian Haydn Ensemble directed by Skye McIntosh. Richard Butler sings the role of the Evangelist.