Royal Academy of Music/Kohn Foundation Bach Cantatas (sold out)

Sunday, 18.02.2018 12:00, Duke’s Hall

BWV 184 Erwünschtes Freudenlicht
BWV 243 Magnificat

Jane Glover guest director
Rachel Podger leader

Performed on historical instruments.

We welcome the return of Jane Glover, the Academy’s Felix Mendelssohn Emeritus Professor of Music, to conduct this perennial favourite. Bach composed the original version of his Magnificat for Christmas Day 1723, interpolating Christmas hymns between some of the verses of the canticle. A decade later, for the Feast of the Visitation in July 1733, he thoroughly revised this masterpiece, transposing it from E flat major to D major, changing many details in the instrumentation and some of the ornamental details of the vocal writing, and omitting the Christmas interpolations. Today’s performance will be of that later, more familiar, version. The work’s twelve movements set the text with intense drama, great character and colour, and surefooted pacing, leading one critic to describe it as ‘perhaps the most perfect of Bach’s shorter choral works’. The cantata Erwünschtes Freudenlicht, BWV 184, was composed for the first week of Pentecost in 1724. Its music, drawing on an earlier secular cantata, strikes a pastoral note perfectly in keeping with its new liturgical text.

Tickets: £15 (concessions £12), season discounts available. By telephone 020 7873 7300 and in person (Monday–Friday, 10am–4pm) or online.

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