Mar 2, 2015

Tafelmusik presents J.S. Bach's St. John Passion, March 19 to 22

Directed by Ivars Taurins
Julia Doyle, soprano | Daniel Taylor, countertenor
Charles Daniels, tenor | Peter Harvey, baritone
"A testament to his faith, Bach's Passions speak to us of the greater human experience through music of powerful drama and profound beauty."  — Ivars Taurins.
Toronto (Canada), March 2, 2015 … A highlight of the 2014/15 season will be Tafelmusik’s performances from March 19 to 22 of Bach’s St. John Passion, a profound work based on text from the gospel according to St. John, at Trinity-St. Paul’s Centre, Jeanne Lamon Hall. Ivars Taurins directs Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir, along with guest soloists soprano Julia Doyle, countertenor Daniel Taylor, tenor Charles Daniels, and baritone Peter Harvey
Bach’s St. John Passion is a retelling in two parts of the story of Christ’s crucifixion, and was first performed on Good Friday in 1724, during the composer’s first year in Leipzig. Bach employed complex recitatives, arias, and choruses to bring the humanity of the story to life, and the music is by turns intense, contemplative, and intimate. The St. John Passion was performed several times in Leipzig during Bach's lifetime, and Bach reworked the score each time. Tafelmusik will perform the final version, as prepared by Bach for the Good Friday service in 1749, a year before his death.
In her programme notes for these concerts, harpsichordist Charlotte Nediger writes, “As is true of so many of Bach’s works, it represents in many ways a summation of the Lutheran history of the Passion. The setting is distinctly liturgical, and decidedly Lutheran. The two parts would have been presented to the congregation on either side of the Good Friday sermon. The music, and text, was meant to speak directly to the individual listener who, together with the performers, was to experience the Passion story on a deeply personal level.”
The Tafelmusik Chamber Choir, specializing in baroque and classical performance practice, was formed in 1981 to complement the orchestra. Under the direction of Ivars Taurins, the choir was awarded the Healey Willan Prize in 1991 and has been described as “the best period-performance choir anywhere in the world” (The Globe & Mail). 
“I’m prepared to nominate the Tafelmusik Chamber Choir for a group Order of Canada ... They are a consummate and perfectly balanced ensemble, so complete in their execution, whose joy and beauty in performance often brought me and my companion … to tears.” (The Globe & Mail, 2014)
Box Office:       Trinity-St. Paul’s: 416.964.6337
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