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The Music Room => Great Recordings and Reviews => Topic started by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 05:08:26 AM

Title: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 05:08:26 AM
Some time ago, I started a thread on Bach's St. Matthew Passion and it proved extremely helpful to me.

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,4877.0.html

Now, I turn to searching for a recording of St. John Passion.  I am leaning toward this one, due to my enjoyment of this conductor's work I have of the St. Matthew:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/417MEPHT0EL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

However, revisiting some Gardiner cantatas yesterday and enjoying them along with this partial review makes me want to get some of your thoughts before making the leap:

You could spend many hours of listening and fill dozens of pages of text to expound the similarities, differences, felicities, inconsistencies, and relative merits of the many past and present recordings of Bach's St. John Passion. After all, we're dealing with a work that existed in at least four different versions in Bach's time and that today is performed from different stylistic points of view and using various editions. We usually hear some form of the original setting first presented in Leipzig in 1724, based on a partial-autograph score from 1739. This is known as the "first version" and it opens with one of Bach's grand choral movements "Herr, unser Herrscher". In Philipe Herreweghe's own "first" recording of this work with his Collegium Vocale Gent in 1987, he adopted this more-commonly performed version--and as carefully explained in the liner notes--also chose to use a female alto soloist for "subjective reasons" of timbre and expressive qualities.

Well, nearly 15 years later, Herreweghe has opted not only for the notably different "second" version (a revision that Bach produced in 1725, a year following the work's first performance) , but also seems to have found an ideal male alto in the person of countertenor extraordinaire Andreas Scholl. The immediate difference you hear is the absence of the original big chorus, which Bach replaced with the rather less ambitious chorale-based chorus "O Mensch, bewein dein Sünde groß" that he later used again in the St. Matthew Passion. Other differences concern substitution of several new arias for the original ones, and replacement of the final chorale "Ach Herr, laß dein lieb Engelein" with a more elaborate choral setting, "Christe, du Lamm Gottes".


Though they advocate more than one recording, I only want to purchase one at this time.  Thanks!

Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 05:35:44 AM
I might be the only fan that hasn't moved onto newer recordings-- but Karl Richter and the Munich Bach Choir and Orchestra is deeply satisfying. 0:)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 05:41:32 AM
I might be the only fan that hasn't moved onto newer recordings-- but Karl Richter and the Munich Bach Choir and Orchestra is deeply satisfying. 0:)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41KPSAWVNTL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Is this the set you have, David, and if so, what are the dates of the Matthew and John recordings?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 05:47:47 AM
I might be the only fan that hasn't moved onto newer recordings-- but Karl Richter and the Munich Bach Choir and Orchestra is deeply satisfying. 0:)

The recording itself is fine but the DVD is terrible.  The cameraman shot more images of the wall and ceiling of the church where the "film" was originally shot with only occasional shots of the soloists.  My favorite mezzo of that era - Julia Hamari, only appeared on a few occasions that lasted less than a minute each.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 05:48:10 AM
Is this the set you have, David, and if so, what are the dates of the Matthew and John recordings?

Yup and

St John = 1964
St Matthew = 1959

It's old school. ;D  It's not Klemperer-esque, but not Rifkin HIP either.  I think you describe Richter as part of the neo-Baroque Leipzig style, so you get lean textures and modest orchestra size.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 05:54:27 AM
The recording itself is fine but the DVD is terrible.  The cameraman shot more images of the wall and ceiling of the church where the "film" was originally shot with only occasional shots of the soloists.  My favorite mezzo of that era - Julia Hamari, only appeared on a few occasions that lasted less than a minute each.

I don't have that, I have the older one on cd with Toepper instead of Hamari.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 05:55:04 AM
Yup and

St John = 1964
St Matthew = 1959

It's old school. ;D  It's not Klemperer-esque, but not Rifkin HIP either.  I think you describe Richter as part of the neo-Baroque Leipzig style, so you get lean textures and modest orchestra size.


Dave,

You are not the only fan of Karl Richter at GMG - good music is good music and it does not have to be HIP.  I have every DVD of his Bach's works - from Brandenburg Concertos to his St. John Passion.  I also have the same works spread across multiple LP sets.  Most of Richter's recordings I own are on LP.  BTW, it is very cool to watch Karl Richter conducting - very relaxed but firmly in control ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 05:56:01 AM
Yup and

St John = 1964
St Matthew = 1959

It's old school. ;D  It's not Klemperer-esque, but not Rifkin HIP either.  I think you describe Richter as part of the neo-Baroque Leipzig style, so you get lean textures and modest orchestra size.


In general, how do you rate Harnoncourt in your Bach listening, David?

I have Richter's St. Matthew.  I will give that a spin again momentarily, but I remember it was what prompted me to seek out another recording in the other thread....however, I know well enough to come back to recordings that I did not care for in the past and give them a fresh listen.  Besides, the John and Matthew recordings could be totally different and I may like the other.

The recording itself is fine but the DVD is terrible.  The cameraman shot more images of the wall and ceiling of the church where the "film" was originally shot with only occasional shots of the soloists.  My favorite mezzo of that era - Julia Hamari, only appeared on a few occasions that lasted less than a minute each.

How many different St. John's do you have, Stuart?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 05:56:15 AM


Dave,

You are not the only fan of Karl Richter at GMG - good music is good music and it does not have to be HIP.  I have every DVD of his Bach's works - from Brandenburg Concertos to his St. John Passion.  I also have the same works spread across multiple LP sets.  Most of Richter's recordings I own are on LP.  BTW, it is very cool to watch Karl Richter conducting - very relaxed but firmly in control ...

That's cool, I need to see if I can get one of those dvds from netflix. :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 05:57:38 AM
I don't have that, I have the older one on cd with Toepper instead of Hamari.

Indeed, Richter's St Matthew Passion on LP had Janet Baker as alto while the DVD had Julia Hamari.  The DVD and the CD are two different recordings ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 06:00:52 AM

In general, how do you rate Harnoncourt in your Bach listening, David?

I have Richter's St. Matthew.  I will give that a spin again momentarily, but I remember it was what prompted me to seek out another recording in the other thread....however, I know well enough to come back to recordings that I did not care for in the past and give them a fresh listen.  Besides, the John and Matthew recordings could be totally different and I may like the other.

How many different St. John's do you have, Stuart?

 

Bill,  3 sets on CD, 2 or may be 3 on LP and 1 on DVD.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 06:01:28 AM
In general, how do you rate Harnoncourt in your Bach listening, David?

That's an interesting question because I've heard his older more traditional style in the secular orchestral works.  He put in much more of an effort to cultivate a lean proto-HIP (or maybe defining HIP) style in the cantatas.  I feel that his recordings of the former are miss, and the recordings of the latter are hit.  If you like what you've heard in the latter, I think the closest to Harnoncourt's approach in modern recordings is found in Rilling.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 06:04:16 AM
 

Bill,  3 sets on CD, 2 or may be 3 on LP and 1 on DVD.

What do you have on cd?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 06:08:28 AM
That's cool, I need to see if I can get one of those dvds from netflix. :)

The St Matthew Passion is definitely the one to watch.  I have no experience with netflix, is it straightly for rental?  

The Brandenburg Concertos is excellent too.  In my view, I think Richter's Brandenburg Concertos on DVD is HIP, though it was not performed on period instruments.  Richter varied the size of the ensemble based on the concertos and he conducted from the harpsichord when it was called for ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 06:10:24 AM

St Matthew = 1959


Ah, there may be a big difference as my Richter Matthew is from 1979, David.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 06:10:45 AM
What do you have on cd?


St. John Passion   Munich Bach Orchestra/Richter
St. John Passion   English Chamber Orch/Leppard/Ameling
St. John Passion   English Baroque Soloists/Gardiner/Monteverdi

I am considering the version by Herreweghe ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 06:17:08 AM
Ah, there may be a big difference as my Richter Matthew is from 1979, David.

I have a recording of his Messiah from the 70s and it's SOOOO different from his earlier Bach recordings that I would not be surprised if you had something a little less energetic.  Maybe coopmv can share his thoughts on the different recordings. :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 06:20:46 AM
The St Matthew Passion is definitely the one to watch.  I have no experience with netflix, is it straightly for rental?  

Alright it's added to my queue. :)

Yeah netflix is strictly for rental.  Some time back they stopped selling dvds and walmart stopped renting them.  It's more profitable for the both of them that way.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Novi on August 01, 2009, 06:21:33 AM


Now, I turn to searching for a recording of St. John Passion.  I am leaning toward this one, due to my enjoyment of this conductor's work I have of the St. Matthew:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/417MEPHT0EL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)


Bill, I have the Herreweghe 1725 version, and while I enjoy it - Scholl and Padmore stand out, as I recall - I see it more as a supplementary than an only recording. 'Herr, unser Herrscher' is more powerful and impressive an opening, perhaps my favourite part of the piece - I love. It was disconcerting the first time I played the CD to find myself in the middle of the St Matthew. :D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 06:25:54 AM
Alright it's added to my queue. :)

Yeah netflix is strictly for rental.  Some time back they stopped selling dvds and walmart stopped renting them.  It's more profitable for the both of them that way.

I have never been big on video.  However, for many classical music on DVD's, I prefer outright ownership.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 06:26:05 AM
Bill, I have the Herreweghe 1725 version, and while I enjoy it - Scholl and Padmore stand out, as I recall - I see it more as a supplementary than an only recording. 'Herr, unser Herrscher' is more powerful and impressive an opening, perhaps my favourite part of the piece - I love. It was disconcerting the first time I played the CD to find myself in the middle of the St Matthew. :D

Nice to see you post here, Novi!  Still enjoying that Herreweghe Matthew you sent my way (though giving my Richter a spin as I type).  So, is the above the only St. Johns you have?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 06:38:45 AM
I have a version from 1962 with Karl Forster conducting Wunderlich, Fischer Dieskau, Ludwig, Grummer and Traxel....quite a lineup. It is not HIP of course, but it is dramatic and not in the least torpid or overblown. The solo singing is excellent. The expert on this specific recording is Andre, so I hope he happens by.

Unlike the St Matthew, of which I have half a dozen versions, I have not the same attachment to this piece. I have all the main arias on various recital discs, that slakes my thirst for more modern sounds in the music.

BTW, there are two Richter sound only recordings of the St Matthew. That earlier one is the better one by far in terms of pace. Very good soloists, Haeflinger, Topper, DFD etc. The later one has Janet Baker, Schreirer and is so slow as to rule itself out, despite the soloists. The opening chorus lasts 11.26. McCreech sped through it at 6.06...a bit too fast, but that gives you the idea. In his earlier recording that opening chorus took Richter 9.52, a much saner tempo.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 07:08:04 AM
I have a version from 1962 with Karl Forster conducting Wunderlich, Fischer Dieskau, Ludwig, Grummer and Traxel....quite a lineup. It is not HIP of course, but it is dramatic and not in the least torpid or overblown. The solo singing is excellent. The expert on this specific recording is Andre, so I hope he happens by.

Mike

Thanks for dropping by, Mike!

Is it this EMI recrding, Mike?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31M7CKPR41L._SL500_AA206_.jpg)

I will PM André with an invite. :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 07:15:09 AM


BTW, there are two Richter sound only recordings of the St Matthew. That earlier one is the better one by far in terms of pace. Very good soloists, Haeflinger, Topper, DFD etc. The later one has Janet Baker, Schreirer and is so slow as to rule itself out, despite the soloists. The opening chorus lasts 11.26. McCreech sped through it at 6.06...a bit too fast, but that gives you the idea. In his earlier recording that opening chorus took Richter 9.52, a much saner tempo.

Mike

I tend to like "slow", so it would not surprise me if I preferred the later.  But, have to listen to both because there are the factors of sound and performance to take into mind.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 07:18:39 AM
I tend to like "slow", so it would not surprise me if I preferred the later.  But, have to listen to both because there are the factors of sound and performance to take into mind.


I also have some problems with the fast tempos John Eliot Gardiner took with some of the Bach's vocal works - passions and cantatas ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 07:19:59 AM
Yes, you have the correct EMI version there. Ihope Andre can contribute.

As to that Richter St M number 2, I love it for some of the solo singing, Ameling is also an attraction amongst the soloists. But I will alert you to the nails down a blackboard flatness of Matti Salminenin his final aria no 75.

It does have its compensations though.

But sorry, I am off topic.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 07:23:18 AM
Oh, yes that reminds me. I forgot to mention that I got rid of the Elliot Gardiner St John Passion. It has good sound, is marvelously sung in the choral sections, but although I very much enjoy his Bach Pilgrimage cantata discs, I find his earlier turbo charged approach that was preserved in the Passions to be perfunctory and with efficient but anonymous solo singing.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 08:38:53 AM
Oh, yes that reminds me. I forgot to mention that I got rid of the Elliot Gardiner St John Passion. It has good sound, is marvelously sung in the choral sections, but although I very much enjoy his Bach Pilgrimage cantata discs, I find his earlier turbo charged approach that was preserved in the Passions to be perfunctory and with efficient but anonymous solo singing.

:o

:)

Funny, I consider Gardiner's Johannes-Passion his best achievement in Bach. I think his approach works perfectly well for this work. When hearing it for the first time, I was mesmerized from the first bars.
But Gardiner's Matthäus was a disappointment to me. Uneven, mostly shallow, and sometimes vainly trying to be as dramatic as he was in the JP. But it doesn't work that way with the Matthäus, IMHO. I've always considered the latter a far more introspective work.

If you're interested in another HIP-vision, you might want to try Sigiswald Kuijken. Slow, yet very expressive!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 08:44:34 AM
:o

:)

Funny, I consider Gardiner's Johannes-Passion his best achievement in Bach. I think his approach works perfectly well for this work. When hearing it for the first time, I was mesmerized from the first bars.
But Gardiner's Matthäus was a disappointment to me. Uneven, mostly shallow, and sometimes vainly trying to be as dramatic as he was in the JP. But it doesn't work that way with the Matthäus, IMHO. I've always considered the latter a far more introspective work.

If you're interested in another HIP-vision, you might want to try Sigiswald Kuijken. Slow, yet very expressive!

But I do not believe Gardiner has any plan to re-record any of the Bach Passions.  His Bach Cantatas project is still going, I believe ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 08:54:51 AM


If you're interested in another HIP-vision, you might want to try Sigiswald Kuijken. Slow, yet very expressive!

Hmmm....I do enjoy the Mozart I have from him.  Your review of Gardiner has me thinking as well.  Two that with have been easily dismissed without your post.  Thanks!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 08:56:15 AM

Funny, I consider Gardiner's Johannes-Passion his best achievement in Bach.


If you're interested in another HIP-vision, you might want to try Sigiswald Kuijken. Slow, yet very expressive!

Thanks. I may well look out a fresh approach. Clearly lots of people respond to some Gardiner recordings that I don't like. I blow hot and cold with him depending on how I feel about specific recordings or performances.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 08:56:53 AM
Thanks. I may well look out a fresh approach. Clearly lots of people respond to some Gardiner recordings that I don't like. I blow hot and cold with him depending on how I feel about specific recordings or performances.

Mike

A very fair statement, IMO.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Que on August 01, 2009, 08:59:51 AM
Bill, I guess you can't go wrong with Herreweghe but my favourite is Harnoncourt's 1st recording, his 2nd recording was IMO - unlike his retake on the St. Matthew - not a succes.
Another I like is the one Marc has already mentioned: Kuijken, with some very fine soloists, available on the budget with Leonhardt's St. Matthew.

(http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/0825646964444.jpg)  (http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/0828766740226.jpg)

Both unfamiliar to me at the moment - my knowledge of recordings is a bit outdated! ;D, but if I was in the market for a new St. John, I personally would also check on these:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61NPP04C1QL._SS400_.jpg)  (http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/4006408600237.jpg)

Good hunting! :)

Q


PS In case you were wondering: no Gardiner or Koopman for me.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 09:08:38 AM
  (http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/0828766740226.jpg)


The fact that Leonhardt is involved here has me leaning here along with Marc's comment about its "slowness".  I usually enjoy Harnoncourt without reservation, but it is nice to have other Bach conductors on the shelf as well.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 09:14:02 AM
The fact that Leonhardt is involved here has me leaning here along with Marc's comment about its "slowness".  I usually enjoy Harnoncourt without reservation, but it is nice to have other Bach conductors on the shelf as well.
 

IMO, St Matthew Passion is still a few notches above St John Passion.  There are just many more memorable movements in St Matthew.  But JS Bach could do no wrong, he never composed any lousy works IMO ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Lilas Pastia on August 01, 2009, 10:31:37 AM
(Fafner coming out of his cave with a big yawn).... 8)

Oh, hi! The St-John, hmm? Well, let me start by saying it's my favourite large-scale Bach choral work. The Christmas Oratorio is chockful with individual gems, but it's uneven. Th b Minor Mass is austere and awe-inspiring. Like Bruckner's 9th symphony it's a monument at the highest level that demands the utmost concentration from the listener. It asks as much as it gives.

My view of the two Passions is that Bach has understood their respective sources (the Matthew and John Gospels) as well as - if not better than any theologian. The  Passion strucure is not exclusively made up of the Gospels' narratives. In keeping with the genre's well-established tradition, it intersperses the biblical verses (assigned to the Narrator, or Evangelist) with pietist arias and chorales (often sung by the congregation). Musical Passions - at least those of Bach - do not enact Parables or portray miracles. It's a stop and go structure, the narratives prodding the music along, with arias and chorales allowing time for reflexion and musical (spiritual) expression.

In keeping with its source, the Matthew Passion leans heavily towards the 'public' Jesus - his Ministry among the Jews, his sermons, miracles etc. It's very much a spiritual spectacle. As such, its demands are quite unusual: in terms of length, the number of soloists, the choral forces, etc. To this day, Passion plays are still enacted with the same kind of emphasis on "Christ (the Messiah) among us" POV.

Totally different is the St-John Gospel. It skips many events, sermons, parables etc that Matthew scrupulously describes. Remember that Mathew was addressing a jewish audience with the clear aim of demonstrating that everything Jesus said and did proved him to be the Messiah Jews had been waiting for - thereby accomplishing the Scriptures. John, writing much later, was recollecting facts and personal memories long after Christ's death. He couldn't be bothered with that kind of proof by accumulation dear to Matthew. Therefore his narrative is more direct, often very dramatic. He concentrates on key issues and links them directly to the Eternal God (read John 1 for the key to this unique POV).

It's therefore not surprising that Bach's St-John Passion is shorter, more direct and more dramatic than the Matthew. Choral numbers are less numerous, but they can pack enormous punch: the first and last ones are extraordinarily dramatic and affecting. The arias are uniformly sublime. Bach wrote the Evangelist's part differently. Instead of separating the numbers, it binds them. There is a very strong sense of forward motion throughout. Any production that fails to find the right balance of drama, forward motion and fervour of utterance will fail.  

Recordings of the St-John Passion have been on my shelves for more than 3 decades. I'm open to various approaches, but while in the St-Matthew a weak link will not sink the project, the St-John is unforgiving to musical or dramatic weakness. In it, Bach transports us to the celestial spheres from the word go (the gripping, engulfing opening chorus). Any hint of human sloppiness brings it crashing down and destroys the effect. That could be a bovine Evangelist, a braying chorus, a meowing soprano, a croaking tenor, an out of tune orchestra, and worst of all a too churchly approach from the conductor. Fervour and intensity, coupled with impeccable vocalism and a strong musical leadership are a must. Note, too, that the winds have much more to do, and acquire an almost vocal personality in this work.

These specific attributes are seldom united.  One has to be happy with recordings that have them, and adjust our sensibilities to the aesthetic on display. IOW it doesn't matter if it's HIP or not, with well-known or unknown soloists. The versions that have always provided me with the most pleasure are the Forster already mentioned, the Jochum (Concertgebouw, on Philips), and the Hungaroton under Lehel. I've never warmed to the Gardiner (had it, sold it). I've extensively sampled quite a few others and despite very good things here and there, the conclusion remains the same: duly accounted for, found wanting, and discarded.

(edited for typo - no new material;) ;)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 10:39:59 AM
Wow!  Thank you very much André.  Well with that incredible overview, and I believe have nailed it down to two or so....the Kuijken and the Foster.  Now to the sampling.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 10:45:49 AM
If I can find any samples.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 10:54:58 AM
Thanks Andre for being coaxed out of your cave, very helpful.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 10:57:16 AM
Now I know why the St John is shorter than the St Matthew!  It doesn't really bother me that the St Matthew Passion is so long though because it's such a great, beautiful work. :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 11:32:28 AM
Now I know why the St John is shorter than the St Matthew!  It doesn't really bother me that the St Matthew Passion is so long though because it's such a great, beautiful work. :)

Yes, if Bach had included the Last Supper section of the St. John Gospel in the JP, this composition might have taken two days, instead of two hours! ;D
It includes all the parables Jesus told that night, and also the washing of the disciples' feet.
That's why the reading and/or singing of St. John's Passion story has to take off immediately with the Gethsemane Garden and the captivation. Dramatic action guaranteed!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 11:34:34 AM
Yes, if Bach had included the Last Supper section of the St. John Gospel in the JP, this composition might have taken two days, instead of two hours! ;D
It includes all the parables Jesus told that night, and also the washing of the disciples' feet.
That's why the reading and/or singing of St. John's Passion story has to take off immediately with the Gethsemane Garden and the captivation. Dramatic action guaranteed!

Order MUST occur in 24 hours....I need to hear this piece!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 12:02:33 PM
Order MUST occur in 24 hours....I need to hear this piece!

OK.
Let's forget about my personal faves .... and try to be 'objective'.
You began this thread with a pic of Herreweghe 2: avoid it, not because it's bad, but because it's the 1725 version .... without the introduction chorus Herr, unser Herrscher!. The SJP is some kind of an orphan without it, IMHO (very objective, this!).
This chorus is indeed my favourite Bach piece.
(Again, as you seee, I promised not to mention faves ....)
Is Herreweghe 1 still available (with a.o. Howard Crook as Evangelist)? This offers the 'standard' version, isn't very fast and will probably answer to your personal taste, because you already liked H. in the SMP.
Still: Kuijken is also not that fast, and you can buy him in a box set, coupled with Leonhardt's recording of the SMP. (Yummy!)
I like Gardiner, but if you're not a great fan of his Bach: avoid.
I like both Harnoncourts, too. His first recording might be a bit challenging for non-HIPpers though. All boys, and sometimes not-entirely-secure tuning of instruments. His second recording, with Anthony Rolfe Johnson both as evangelist and aria singer, is more straightforward. The recording sound is a bit direct, though (almost no reverberation).
Harnoncourt is also visible on DVD somewhere: again all boys, no perfect tuning, but with the best evangelist of all time (of course this is a totally objective opinion): Kurt Equiluz. When you look at him singing, you realize he's not to be trifled with! When you listen to him singing, he'll certainly make your blood run cold!
Hermann Max (like Harnoncourt 1, also mentioned by Que) is very good IMHO, but also very fast. It doesn't bother me at all though, because (as in his SMP) he avoids to sound hasty.
Masaaki Suzuki is quite OK, too. But he doesn't make me 'scream and shout' in this composition, I must admit.
Not to forget: Ton Koopman! I think his studio SJP is far better than his studio SMP. It might be the one for you .... you see: it's really an easy choice! ;)

About non-HIP I really can't say anything, except: maybe Peter Schreier, or Helmuth Rilling's second recording will answer to your wishes! Schreier offers some alternative aria's from the 1725 version, Rilling offers a lot more of that.

But in the end, I would advice:
Buy the Kuijken/Leonhardt double passion CD box set.
And also buy the Harnoncourt DVD. Both watching Harnoncourt conduct, hearing some boys sing very well, and .... watching and listening to Kurt Equiluz .... well, it has proven to be quite an event for me!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 12:21:14 PM

You began this thread with a pic of Herreweghe 2: avoid it, not because it's bad, but because it's the 1725 version .... without the introduction chorus Herr, unser Herrscher!. The SJP is some kind of an orphan without it, IMHO (very objective, this!).


That is what nixed it in the end for me.  I would like to have that intro for my intro recording.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 12:21:37 PM
Bach also composed a St Marc and a St Luke passion. Semi-reconstructed recordings exist on Brilliant.

From Wikepedia...where the writer does not accept the possibility.

There survives a manuscript of the St Luke Passion from about 1730 that is partly in Bach's hand, though the academics believe that the music is certainly not his own. Presumably Bach performed it, or intended to perform it, in Leipzig. C. P. E. Bach and Agricola may have mistaken it for a work of Bach's and thus included it in their census. Of course, given his delight in exhaustive cycles, Bach should have composed a St Luke Passion. Apparently J. S. Bach took the anonymous St Luke Passion and arranged it for four voices, chorus, orchestra, and continuo to meet an urgent deadline for Good Friday in 1730.


Mike

Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 12:23:06 PM
Bach also composed a St Marc and a St Luke passion. Semi-reconstructed recordings exist on Brilliant.

From Wikepedia...where the writer does not accept the possibility.

There survives a manuscript of the St Luke Passion from about 1730 that is partly in Bach's hand, though the academics believe that the music is certainly not his own. Presumably Bach performed it, or intended to perform it, in Leipzig. C. P. E. Bach and Agricola may have mistaken it for a work of Bach's and thus included it in their census. Of course, given his delight in exhaustive cycles, Bach should have composed a St Luke Passion. Apparently J. S. Bach took the anonymous St Luke Passion and arranged it for four voices, chorus, orchestra, and continuo to meet an urgent deadline for Good Friday in 1730.


Mike



I saw those as well, Mike.  May be interesting to hear.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 12:24:54 PM
I saw those as well, Mike.  May be interesting to hear.


But are St Mark Passion and St Luke Passion as authentic as Beethoven 10th?

 ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: DavidW on August 01, 2009, 12:36:33 PM
It's surprising that CPE Bach would not know his dad's work.  They wrote music together.  He has performed his papa's work in concert.  It's a little odd. :-\
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 12:43:37 PM
Bach also composed a St Marc and a St Luke passion. Semi-reconstructed recordings exist on Brilliant.

From Wikepedia...where the writer does not accept the possibility.

There survives a manuscript of the St Luke Passion from about 1730 that is partly in Bach's hand, though the academics believe that the music is certainly not his own. Presumably Bach performed it, or intended to perform it, in Leipzig. C. P. E. Bach and Agricola may have mistaken it for a work of Bach's and thus included it in their census. Of course, given his delight in exhaustive cycles, Bach should have composed a St Luke Passion. Apparently J. S. Bach took the anonymous St Luke Passion and arranged it for four voices, chorus, orchestra, and continuo to meet an urgent deadline for Good Friday in 1730.

According to a necrology of CPE Bach, Bach wrote 5 passions.

We know the SJP and SMP.
The St Mark is known, because the lyrics have survived.
He composed a passion oratorio in his Weimar period, for the county of Gotha (this one got lost, but one thinks that maybe 'O Mensch, bewein dein Sünde groß' was part of it, and also some arias that returned in the 1725 SJP version).
He composed 2 versions of the SJP. (Even more: but in the end, two of them were 'really' different: the 1725 and the 1724/1749 version.)

That makes five.
Did Bach compose a St Luke Passion? There is no evidence of that. We do have this St. Luke manuscript though, with 2/3 in the handwriting of CPE, and 1/3 of JS. But believe me: one doesn't need to be an academic to hear that this SLP is NOT by JS Bach himself. He only arranged the final chorale of the first part of this Passion, which is believed to be composed by Johann Melchior Molter (1696-1765).
Best recording I've heard (I know only two, btw): Wolfgang Helbich conducts the Alsfelder Vokalensemble & Barockorchester Bremen. Rufus Müller is evangelist, and Stephan Schreckenberger sings the bass part of Jesus (not bad, both of them!). Label: CPO.

The music of the St Mark Passion is lost, but the lyrics of Picander have survived. It is to be believed that many of the arias are 'parodies' of arias of the Trauer-Ode BWV 198.
Good recordings: Roy Goodman conducts the Ring Ensemble of Finland and a European youth orchestra. It has a very good treble in the soprano parts, only problem is: he's not singing German at all! ;D Label: now Brilliant Classics!

I also have a recording where a reconstruction of Bach is mixed with modern music of the composer Volker Bräutigam: interesting indeed!
Christian Pfeifer conducts the Kantorei der Bergkirche Wiesbaden & the Capella Montana choir.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 12:55:25 PM
Did Bach compose a St Luke Passion? There is no evidence of that. We do have this St. Luke manuscript though, with 2/3 in the handwriting of CPE, and 1/3 of JS. But believe me: one doesn't need to be an academic to hear that this SLP is NOT by JS Bach himself.

I once read that Brahms said, after the discovery of the manuscript and all the excitement going along with it: "This St. Luke Passion composed by Bach? Sure, when he was still wetting his bed!"
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 12:57:20 PM
I have both Luke and Marc....but to my ears they just don't hang together at all. Also, they are so speculative and tentative, I have really no idea who I am listening to and I have basically neglected them.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 01, 2009, 01:02:44 PM
I have both Luke and Marc [....]

Sorry?

IN YOUR DREAMS! :P

Quote from: knight
.... but to my ears they just don't hang together at all. Also, they are so speculative and tentative, I have really no idea who I am listening to and I have basically neglected them.

Koopman tried to 'hang Mark together'. Avoided the Trauer-Ode and came up with entirely other choices, and he composed the recitatives himself, in Bach's style. In the end: it was a performance of the St Mark Passion of T. Koopman, with some add-ons by Bach. :D
Anyway: he did not hang it together, either. ;D

Back to topic then, the SJP. And let's wish Bogey well with his choice(s)!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 01:16:20 PM


Back to topic then, the SJP. And let's wish Bogey well with his choice(s)!

Will be a single choice, Marc.  Probably the Kuijken, with a much later purchase of the Herreweghe....unless I blink. ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 01:25:46 PM
Will be a single choice, Marc.  Probably the Kuijken, with a much later purchase of the Herreweghe....unless I blink. ;D
 

I may add both of these recordings to my collection since I really do not have one version that is truly sastifying.  The Gardiner's version sounds too fast for me.  But isn't Herreweghe pretty fast too?  I have his St Matthew Passion but zipped through it on my first and only listen a bit fast to have any solid recollection ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 02:18:48 PM
Sorry?

IN YOUR DREAMS! :P


No....in my disc collection.

No notes whatsoever, which is partly why they sit there looking at me and don't get out much for a play. All I have is the aritsts and track listings. Spelling corrected here they are.

Lukas Passion.....Conductor, Gerhard Rehm, Singers include Chalotte Lehmann, Georg Jelden

Markus Passion....Conductor Roy Goodman, Singers include Rogers Covey-Crump, Paul Agnew

Brilliant Classics.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 02:27:46 PM
No....in my disc collection.

No notes whatsoever, which is partly why they sit there looking at me and don't get out much for a play. All I have is the aritsts and track listings. Spelling corrected here they are.

Lukas Passion.....Conductor, Gerhard Rehm, Singers include Chalotte Lehmann, Georg Jelden

Markus Passion....Conductor Roy Goodman, Singers include Rogers Covey-Crump, Paul Agnew

Brilliant Classics.

Mike

No notes!  Yikes.  Does the Kuijken set have a decent set for the St. John?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 02:43:20 PM
No notes!  Yikes.  Does the Kuijken set have a decent set for the St. John?
 

I can never deal with a set of CD's with no liner notes for a work that is one of a kind such as a St Luke Passion.  My Walcha's Historical Bach Organ Works set on Document has no liner notes whatsoever.  But I have no problems with that for obvious reasons ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on August 01, 2009, 03:01:18 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61NPP04C1QL._SS400_.jpg) 



If no one's going to second this one, I will! :) Gorgeous hybrid version with 'ripenists' augmenting the nearly OVPP approach giving the work added strength in the choruses (my preference).

Veldhoven is also a master colorist, perhaps more so than any other HIPster I've heard.

Bill, I urge you not to overlook this version while sampling. The fact it isn't getting many rec's isn't a reflection of its quality - it's just something of a "new kid on the block" compared to other veteran recordings.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on August 01, 2009, 03:09:57 PM
Thanks to this thread this afternoon was a better one for me, listening to this work.

God knows I'm not an envious person, but how I'd wish to have a beautiful voice to sing the aria “Mein Jesu, ach! Dein schmerzhaft bitter leiden…” or “just” to play the violin part (AMDG).

(02:27)

http://www.youtube.com/v/dAhrbseCzss

Aria (T) (Later version, IV)

My Jesus, ah, thy painful bitter sadness
Brings countless gladness,
It quells the pain of sin.

      I see in truth with greatest terror
      The holy body now blood-covered,
      But even this my joy must waken,
      It makes me free from hell and death.  


Probably this box set should be considered too (it includes detailed booklets and librettos in German and English):

http://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Die-gro%DFen-geistlichen-Werke-BIS-Edition-Masaaki-Suzuki/hnum/1029940

 :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Lilas Pastia on August 01, 2009, 03:19:24 PM
I haven't heard the Veldhoven & Co., but their Christmas Oratorio is very, very nice. After all, it's from the same musical culture that gave us Leonhardt, Herreweghe, Jacobs, Koopman ...

[Edited to add René Jacobs to the list...]
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 01, 2009, 03:21:20 PM

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61NPP04C1QL._SS400_.jpg) 

This is now on my shopping list ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 01, 2009, 03:26:22 PM
AM, Thanks for the clip, it is beautiful. Odd that the soloists are made to look like accountants. More appropriate for the St Matthew.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on August 01, 2009, 03:29:08 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61NPP04C1QL._SS400_.jpg) 

This is now on my shopping list ...

The artwork in those discs is really stunning.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 01, 2009, 03:34:32 PM
Testing the the Herreweghe as I type.  It is to my liking.  The Veldhoven I did not care for as much after sampling compared the Herreweghe.  I cannot find a Kuijken.  Any help with this would be appreciated, if one exists.  Same with the Forster.  No samples found yet.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on August 01, 2009, 03:35:05 PM
AM, Thanks for the clip, it is beautiful. Odd that the soloists are made to look like accountants.

Mike

 ;D

You're welcome, Mike.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Novi on August 01, 2009, 08:07:44 PM
Testing the the Herreweghe as I type.  It is to my liking.  The Veldhoven I did not care for as much after sampling compared the Herreweghe.  I cannot find a Kuijken.  Any help with this would be appreciated, if one exists.  Same with the Forster.  No samples found yet.

Here you go Bill:

Kuijken (http://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Matth%E4us-Passion-BWV-244/hnum/6738131)

Forster (http://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Johannes-Passion-BWV-245/hnum/6262824)

Great thread. :) I have Gardiner, Suzuki, and eek! an English version with Britten (which actually isn't so bad depending on how you feel about Peter Pears). None of these really stand out though. These two sound interesting. It's hard to gauge from the clips, but I like the sense of urgency in the Forster. Having said that, the Kuijken/Leonhardt box is also very attractive, as I really like Leonhardt's B Minor Mass.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Novi on August 01, 2009, 08:08:53 PM
(Fafner coming out of his cave with a big yawn).... 8)


Thanks for the interesting post, Lilas. Great read!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: The new erato on August 01, 2009, 10:26:23 PM
Very interesting thread as my recordings of the St John's lags seriously behind my St Matthew's. In fact I have only the Cleoburys on Brilliant which nobody have mentioned - has anybody heard it?  BTW; I like it a lot, though my expertise here obviously is severely limited.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2009, 02:25:40 AM
Very interesting thread as my recordings of the St John's lags seriously behind my St Matthew's. In fact I have only the Cleoburys on Brilliant which nobody have mentioned - has anybody heard it?  BTW; I like it a lot, though my expertise here obviously is severely limited.

Cleobury: not bad. It's a bit like Gardiner. Of course, Cleobury is available at Brilliant Classics, which means it's a bargain. Boys choir (in English tradition, with sometimes sloppy German), but a very good evangelist: John Mark Ainsley. Catherine Bott (soprano) was a disappointment to me, though. Extras on this set: choruses and arias from the 1725 version.

About Van Veldhoven, mentioned by some: IMO, that's a good one. Van Veldhoven is always solid in Bach, with affectionate readings.
The only problem I have with his SJP are the tenor arias. These two belong to my favourites, and Van Veldhoven is choosing really odd tempi for them. The first one is taken very slow and easy, whilst the singer should be in anguish .... and the second one is extremely fast, whilst the singer is inviting the listeners to entirely share and experience the suffering of Jesus. So I think Van Veldhoven got mixed and messed up a bit here! ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2009, 02:36:14 AM
I have both Luke and Marc.... [....]

Sorry?

IN YOUR DREAMS! :P

No....in my disc collection.

Quite an honour. ;D
Which part am I singing?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 02, 2009, 02:52:24 AM
I sacked you. You were singing too loudly.  $:)

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 02, 2009, 03:06:08 AM
This morning I listened through to my Forster recording. I have now become quite wedded to HIP in Bach, the orchestral palate sounds so alive. The modern instruments have a different range of tone and it dulls down the lightness of the textures.

The solo singing was first rate. I do like characterful renditions. A number of modern singers produce a relatively white sound. The biggest difference though, apart from the orchestral sound, is that now we expect the choir to sound fleet; no booming bases or braying at the top of the men's range. I am not saying that Foster's choir was other than musical, but the weight feels much more Romantic, as against the dynamism of the best modern choirs in this music. The best also manage the drama excellently.

I listened through to the linked clips from Kuijken, delectable woodwind and all excellent really.

I then went to the Harnoncourt all male St Matthew, here I heard exactly what I don't like. Hooty tone from the boys and I never can understand the idea of designating some of Bach's most profound contemplative arias to lads who know next to nothing of life and barely manage to negotiate the notes in tune. Bach may well have done it, but I think that an adult soprano has a much greater chance of communicating the often quite extreme emotions that Bach exposes.

Mike

Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2009, 03:07:10 AM
I sacked you. You were singing too loudly.  $:)

>:(

Some quotes came to mind:
Look at my face. Am I bovvered? (The Catherine Tate Show)

Altered quote:
Spike: What's up?
X: Mike just sacked Marc.
Spike: You daft prick.

(Notting Hill)

;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on August 02, 2009, 03:12:35 AM
Cleobury: not bad. It's a bit like Gardiner. Of course, Cleobury is available at Brilliant Classics, which means it's a bargain. Boys choir (in English tradition, with sometimes sloppy German), but a very good evangelist: John Mark Ainsley. Catherine Bott (soprano) was a disappointment to me, though. Extras on this set: choruses and arias from the 1725 version.

About Van Veldhoven, mentioned by some: IMO, that's a good one. Van Veldhoven is always solid in Bach, with affectionate readings.
The only problem I have with his SJP are the tenor arias. These two belong to my favourites, and Van Veldhoven is choosing really odd tempi for them. The first one is taken very slow and easy, whilst the singer should be in anguish .... and the second one is extremely fast, whilst the singer is inviting the listeners to entirely share and experience the suffering of Jesus. So I think Van Veldhoven got mixed and messed up a bit here! ;D
 

I am really not all that impressed with Cleobury based on his Handel's Coronation Anthems.  John Eliot Gardiner did a much better job for that work ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 02, 2009, 03:35:10 AM
Here you go Bill:

Kuijken (http://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Matth%E4us-Passion-BWV-244/hnum/6738131)

Forster (http://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Johann-Sebastian-Bach-Johannes-Passion-BWV-245/hnum/6262824)

Great thread. :) I have Gardiner, Suzuki, and eek! an English version with Britten (which actually isn't so bad depending on how you feel about Peter Pears). None of these really stand out though. These two sound interesting. It's hard to gauge from the clips, but I like the sense of urgency in the Forster. Having said that, the Kuijken/Leonhardt box is also very attractive, as I really like Leonhardt's B Minor Mass.


Thanks Novi.  I really liked what I heard in the Kuijken.  The Forster did not get a fair shake here, but at least there are two I have enjoyed through sampling (the other the Herreweghe).  However, fun to have someone new for Bach on the shelf.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on August 02, 2009, 04:11:09 AM
>:(

Look at my face. Am I bovvered?
;D

 ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bulldog on August 02, 2009, 09:27:43 AM
Great thread. :) I have Gardiner, Suzuki, and eek! an English version with Britten (which actually isn't so bad depending on how you feel about Peter Pears). None of these really stand out though. These two sound interesting. It's hard to gauge from the clips, but I like the sense of urgency in the Forster. Having said that, the Kuijken/Leonhardt box is also very attractive, as I really like Leonhardt's B Minor Mass.


Yes, the Leonhardt B Minor Mass is my favorite on record.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2009, 07:48:06 PM
I am really not all that impressed with Cleobury based on his Handel's Coronation Anthems. John Eliot Gardiner did a much better job for that work ...

Well, maybe Cleobury does a better job with Bach. :)
His is a rather bold and straightforward reading of the SJP. If one likes that .... then it's a bargain.

But indeed: Gardiner has got a lot of merits, too, plus more.
For instance: listening to Nancy Argenta sing Zerfließe, mein Herze is an everlasting repeated moving experience. 0:)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: jlaurson on August 03, 2009, 06:40:03 AM
I'm very, very fond of Herreweghe's St.John.

Wrote about it in anticipation of a live performance in NYC a few years back... with several recordings mentioned.

Music for Easter (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=107)
http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=107 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=107)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 03, 2009, 08:55:06 AM
Went with the Kuijken....thanks for the suggestions and the great background info, folks.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 03, 2009, 09:27:48 AM
Went with the Kuijken....thanks for the suggestions and the great background info, folks.

Good man! :)

Just curious: did you choose the combination Kuijken SJP/Leonhardt SMP?
(Because that really IS a steal.)

EDIT: Just checked the purchase thread -> no answer needed. ;)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 03, 2009, 10:23:52 AM
I'm very, very fond of Herreweghe's St.John.

If only the pauses between tracks weren't that long (1725 recording). It takes away a lot of the drama, IMHO.
But on the whole, I would say Bach & Herreweghe: a merry marriage! :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Bogey on August 03, 2009, 12:13:53 PM
Good man! :)

Just curious: did you choose the combination Kuijken SJP/Leonhardt SMP?
(Because that really IS a steal.)

Yes.  It is a 5 disc set and the SMP is the first three.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 07, 2009, 10:19:45 AM
Yes.  It is a 5 disc set and the SMP is the first three.

What are your first listening experiences?
Happy with the purchase?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Que on August 07, 2009, 10:36:43 AM
I can't seem to be finding that set. Have you by chance a link?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RJ6lgwA2L._SL500_AA240_.jpg) (http://www.amazon.com/J-S-Bach-Matthew-Passion-Germany/dp/B0007OP69Y/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1249673688&sr=1-4)

Click picture.

Q
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Papageno on December 26, 2009, 07:50:31 AM
I'm looking for a Klemperer-esque recording of Bach's St. John Passion.  I'm not even sure if Klemperer has recorded it.
I should note that I don't like the Karl Richter recording that much.

Good to be back...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on December 26, 2009, 02:00:03 PM
I'm looking for a Klemperer-esque recording of Bach's St. John Passion.  I'm not even sure if Klemperer has recorded it.
I should note that I don't like the Karl Richter recording that much.

Good to be back...
Hello, Papageno!
I'm probably your worst adviser if non-HIP is concerned, and I dunno 'bout the performance myself .... nevertheless I give you this one (with some hesitation ;)), conducted by Eugen Jochum:

(http://i.imagehost.org/0577/Bach-JP_EJ.jpg) (http://i.imagehost.org/view/0577/Bach-JP_EJ)

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B0000069CU
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on December 26, 2009, 02:01:20 PM
Hello, Papageno!
I'm probably your worst adviser if non-HIP is concerned, and I dunno 'bout the performance myself .... nevertheless I give you this one (with some hesitation ;)), conducted by Eugen Jochum:

(http://i.imagehost.org/0549/515SfLgw3WL_SS500.jpg) (http://i.imagehost.org/view/0549/515SfLgw3WL_SS500)

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B0000069CU

This is a decent non-HIP recording and I have had a set for a while ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: zmic on January 06, 2010, 04:56:57 PM
One non-HIP that I like very much is the 1970 recording by Wolfgang Gönnenwein on EMI.

As for HIP, I prefer Harnoncourt II and Herreweghe I.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on April 27, 2010, 01:30:20 PM
Found this live recording by Herreweghe (27-03-2007, Gent, Belgium); broadcasted by RTBF Belgium, March 20th 2008; downloadable at Rapidshare .... mp3 sound is lean, definitely not impressive ('lisping'), especially in the chorus parts. But, suppose you're able to download it this way, why not give it a listen? I just listened to the first part, and .... it's Bach, it's Herreweghe, it's good. :)

http://rapidshare.com/files/344603839/BWV245_07-03-27_pt_1.zip
http://rapidshare.com/files/344612428/BWV245_07-03-27_pt_2.zip
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: knight66 on April 27, 2010, 08:54:22 PM
Another non-hip recording that is well worth investigating is Karl Forster with the Berlin Sym Orch on EMI from 1962. It is direct and dramatic. The singers include Fischer-Dieskau, Grummer and Wunderlich. The choir is large, but alert in terms of what we expect today, but not enormous or lumbering. It is a very satisfying reading.

Mike
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: zmic on April 29, 2010, 05:02:45 AM
I'm looking for a Klemperer-esque recording of Bach's St. John Passion.  I'm not even sure if Klemperer has recorded it.
I should note that I don't like the Karl Richter recording that much.

Good to be back...

My guess is that the Karl Forster recording would be the most Klemperer-esque.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2010, 01:58:08 AM
Listening to a new recording, and even some kind of a 'new' version: 1725 mainly, but with the standard Herr, unser Herrscher as opening choir, plus the larger continuo prescriptions of the 1749 version.

(http://i44.tinypic.com/2ee8nqh.jpg)

La Chapelle Rhénane, conducted by Benoît Haller.

http://www.amazon.de/dp/B0036V4DMG

Mixed opinions so far, after only one listening session: like the Fasolis recording, the opening choir has got percussion-like bass rhythmics, yet slightly milder. 2 voices per part in the chorus singing, by the soloists. One of the sopranos a bit fluttering, which makes blending of the voices not ideal.
Very good performance by evangelist Julian Prégardien, indeed, the son of Christoph! Also Benoît Arnould (Jesus) offers a very satisfying performance.
In general: a good performance, but not very special, with a tendency to one-sided (heavy) expression with little variety. Of course, this opinion could be changed after some more listening sessions. I mainly wanted to point out a new recording.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on March 18, 2011, 02:59:59 PM
A new recording, with the Ricercar Consort and Philippe Pierlot, and it's one of the the best I've heard in years. An intimate yet very expressive performance, with very good instrumentalists and some outstanding voices, especially countertenor Carlos Mena.

This one might jump into my personal Top 3 [:P], to join Gardiner I and Kuijken.

Recommended!

(http://i56.tinypic.com/1z2pxqb.jpg)

http://www.amazon.co.uk/J-S-Bach-Passion-Ricercar-Consort/dp/B004LYIDQY
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on March 24, 2011, 07:33:57 AM
For those who live nereby Stockholm:

Sunday April 10th
15:00 hours
Berwaldhallen, Stockholm
Bach: Johannes-Passion BWV 245
Sveriges Radiokören
Drottningholms Barockensemble
Evangelist: Maximilian Schmitt
Soloists from Sveriges Radiokören
Conductor: Peter Dijkstra

(For Dijkstra's SMP; check out this message:
http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,4877.msg500010.html#msg500010)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on March 25, 2011, 04:35:27 AM
A new recording, with the Ricercar Consort and Philippe Pierlot, and it's one of the the best I've heard in years. An intimate yet very expressive performance, with very good instrumentalists and some outstanding voices, especially countertenor Carlos Mena.

This one might jump into my personal Top 3 [:P], to join Gardiner I and Kuijken.

Recommended!

(http://i56.tinypic.com/1z2pxqb.jpg)

http://www.amazon.co.uk/J-S-Bach-Passion-Ricercar-Consort/dp/B004LYIDQY

Thanks for the head-ups!

Some weeks ago, I wrote about the new versions of the Johannes-Passion:

I will probably purchase all those three versions in the future, but at the moment I desesperately need just one of them.  :)   

I was thinking in Pierlot, IMO one of the very best Baroque directors of the last two decades and, for some strange reason, still rather unknown. I simply collect every recording by the Ricercar Consort.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 29, 2011, 12:33:50 PM
A new recording, with the Ricercar Consort and Philippe Pierlot, and it's one of the the best I've heard in years. An intimate yet very expressive performance, with very good instrumentalists and some outstanding voices, especially countertenor Carlos Mena.

This one might jump into my personal Top 3 [:P], to join Gardiner I and Kuijken.

Recommended!

(http://i56.tinypic.com/1z2pxqb.jpg)

http://www.amazon.co.uk/J-S-Bach-Passion-Ricercar-Consort/dp/B004LYIDQY

I have finished up the second listening of the new Johannes-Passion directed by Philippe Pierlot, but unfortunately I don't share your enthusiasm, Marc.

During several years I have paid close attention to the recordings of the Ricercar Consort, almost invariably with great pleasure and enduring trust in their skills. But this is the second time that a recording by them has been a major disappointment to me, being the other one their also recent Magnificat.

IMO the principles of OVPP don't simply work out here from the very initial chorus which results deprived of any exhortative power. I could never forgive that I was listening to a OVPP version because every voice is separately listened to everywhere (maybe at some extent a fault of the recording because the sound is taken very closely). Hans-Jörg Mammel is an Evangelist which is totally lack of warmth or ability to express the deepest feelings involved in the story. There is intimacy, but never devotional sense. Maybe I am a bit biased because during the last months I have been listening to several great versions of this master work: Herreweghe II, Veldhoven, Max, Koopman and, two weeks ago, a beautiful version (1725) directed by Nico van der Meel (Quintone), all of them IMO superior to Pierlot and his gang... Sorry, Philippe, but it's my humble and totally amateur opinion.  :'(   

Anyway, the instrumental parts played by the Ricercar Consort sound excellent, as usual.
   
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 29, 2011, 12:42:25 PM
Don't feel bad about disagreements, dear Ton. :)
Most of the recordings you mentioned are all top notch in my view, too.

Still: I might prefer Herreweghe I to II.
And I have mixed feelings towards Van Veldhoven, mainly due to some uneven tempi choices.
And I found the Van der Meel too superficial, especially due to the rather lacklustre choir singing.

I have to listen to the Pierlot again sometime. Before Good Friday I listened to it twice, with great pleasure .... but now Christ is arisen and almost up in Heaven, so I'm more into BWV 4 and 43. ;)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 29, 2011, 12:52:02 PM
And I found the Van der Meel too superficial, especially due to the rather lacklustre choir singing.

Probably I will again listen to this version the next weekend. I loved the "pietist", anti-operatic approach and the Evangelist by Nico van der Meel, but it was probably Holly Friday too.  :)

Anyway, what a wonderful soprano is Maria Keohane! And, I agree with you, Mena is singing better every day.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 29, 2011, 01:14:45 PM
Probably I will again listen to this version the next weekend. I loved the "pietist", anti-operatic approach and the Evangelist by Nico van der Meel, but it was probably Holly Friday too. :)

Holly Friday?

http://www.facebook.com/people/Holly-Friday/184805707

Tell me more .... ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 29, 2011, 01:48:26 PM
Holly Friday?

http://www.facebook.com/people/Holly-Friday/184805707

Tell me more .... ;D

 ;D :D ;D

I was counting my different versions of the Johannes-Passion and I found these: Herreweghe I & II, Kuijken (I imagine we will have an OVPP version soon), Fasolis, Veldhoven, Parrott, Pierlot, Gardiner I, Richter, Münchinger, Higginbottom, Koopman, Max, van der Meel, Suzuki, Cleobury, Haller & finally Rilling (not my favorite, but quite better than his Matthäus). Additionally, these days is crossing the ocean a version by Ludwig Güttler (Berlin Classics). I think I will stop for some time, but Brüggen I & II and Gardiner II are hard to resist. :)

P.S.: I forgot the recording on DVD directed by Harnoncourt. A favorite of mine. I suppose I enjoyed so much that DVD that I never thought to buy a CD version by him.

(http://www.elpais.com/fotos/personas/ign/10/151_1089.jpg)

 ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 29, 2011, 02:56:44 PM
Previously I mentioned Maria Keohane, so I thought it would be interesting to share this video:

http://www.youtube.com/v/TBuhOzBuS84

 :)



Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Que on May 29, 2011, 07:54:05 PM
;D :D ;D

I was counting my different versions of the Johannes-Passion and I found these: Herreweghe I & II, Kuijken (I imagine we will have an OVPP version soon), Fasolis, Veldhoven, Parrott, Pierlot, Gardiner I, Richter, Münchinger, Higginbottom, Koopman, Max, van der Meel, Suzuki, Cleobury, Haller & finally Rilling (not my favorite, but quite better than his Matthäus). Additionally, these days is crossing the ocean a version by Ludwig Güttler (Berlin Classics). I think I will stop for some time, but Brüggen I & II and Gardiner II are hard to resist. :)

P.S.: I forgot the recording on DVD directed by Harnoncourt. A favorite of mine. I suppose I enjoyed so much that DVD that I never thought to buy a CD version by him.

(http://www.elpais.com/fotos/personas/ign/10/151_1089.jpg)

 ;D

An impressive line up! :) What about the old Harnoncourt recording?

(http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/0825646964444.jpg)

Q
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 30, 2011, 12:10:03 AM
Previously I mentioned Maria Keohane, so I thought it would be interesting to share this video:
[clip]
:)

With Van Veldhoven and his Netherlands Bach Society, I presume.
Indeed a beautiful performance. Thanks for sharing!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 30, 2011, 06:39:48 AM
An impressive line up! :) What about the old Harnoncourt recording?

(http://www.jpc.de/image/w600/front/0/0825646964444.jpg)

Q

You're right, I consider that Harnoncourt the only really essential recording of the Johannes-Passion lacking among my discs. But I suppose I will add it at some point, meanwhile I have the DVD from the eighties.  :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Antoine Marchand on May 30, 2011, 06:54:01 AM
With Van Veldhoven and his Netherlands Bach Society, I presume.
Indeed a beautiful performance. Thanks for sharing!

Do you have the Magnificat by the Ricercar Consort, Marc? I wanted to upload some samples of the extra-DVD included there, but I need some time. Maria Keohane is a very good singer and also has beautiful corporal expression.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on May 30, 2011, 07:22:32 AM

I was counting my different versions of the Johannes-Passion and I found these: Herreweghe I & II, Kuijken (I imagine we will have an OVPP version soon), Fasolis, Veldhoven, Parrott, Pierlot, Gardiner I, Richter, Münchinger, Higginbottom, Koopman, Max, van der Meel, Suzuki, Cleobury, Haller & finally Rilling (not my favorite, but quite better than his Matthäus). Additionally, these days is crossing the ocean a version by Ludwig Güttler (Berlin Classics). I think I will stop for some time, but Brüggen I & II and Gardiner II are hard to resist. :)


Yes, we completists are drowning in our passions. My list is almost similar to yours, 14 versions overlapping.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: jlaurson on May 30, 2011, 07:24:51 AM
Yes, we completists are drowning in our passions. My list is almost similar to yours, 14 versions overlapping.

Then get ready for Riccardo Chailly's St.John Passion on Decca...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 30, 2011, 08:16:23 AM
Then get ready for Riccardo Chailly's St.John Passion on Decca...

Dunno. I wasn't impressed by his Matthäus. Insane opening chorus and overly interpreted chorales, with too much dynamic changes IMO. At the end, I wasn't spiritually lifted at all. But, who knows, maybe the Johannes is better suited to Chailly's operatic taste.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Coopmv on May 30, 2011, 08:25:13 AM
Dunno. I wasn't impressed by his Matthäus. Insane opening chorus and overly interpreted chorales, with too much dynamic changes IMO. At the end, I wasn't spiritually lifted at all. But, who knows, maybe the Johannes is better suited to Chailly's operatic taste.

While I have not heard Chailly's SMP or SJP. I have no intention to get any of his passions.  Between Koopman, Herreweghe, Veldhoven, Gardiner and Harnoncourt plus many other non-HIP performances I have, including the SMP set from Mengelberg, the sets from Chaily add no values to my collection ...
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on May 30, 2011, 08:25:44 AM
Do you have the Magnificat by the Ricercar Consort, Marc? I wanted to upload some samples of the extra-DVD included there, but I need some time. Maria Keohane is a very good singer and also has beautiful corporal expression.

I have that issue and consider it quite a likeable one, with organ intermezzi (which I somehow seem to like ;)), but I have not seen the DVD (yet).
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Mn Dave on November 02, 2011, 04:21:21 AM
My first listen I think, last night. Not the whole thing but a good part of the first disc (Munchinger/Stuttgart). As usual, I was fiddling about on the computer as I listened but had to stop at times because I was so moved. Magnificent! Sure to become a favorite with me.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: jlaurson on November 02, 2011, 05:37:50 AM
Dunno. I wasn't impressed by his Matthäus. Insane opening chorus and overly interpreted chorales, with too much dynamic changes IMO. At the end, I wasn't spiritually lifted at all. But, who knows, maybe the Johannes is better suited to Chailly's operatic taste.

Yes, the SMP isn't among my favorites, either... but the Christmas Oratorio is. And I love the fact that he's doing it with the Gewandhaus O. in the first place, and with such a high profile, too...  even if the results don't all awe me.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on November 02, 2011, 08:42:36 AM
I am glad no one brought up Eugen Jochum's recording because that leaves me with something useful to do: bringing up Eugene Jochum's recording, which is the best (ok, my favorite) among the versions I own.
[....]

Has been mentioned before, though only in a brief way.

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,13767.msg380702.html#msg380702

[....] I hope fans of Ricardo Chailly won't get jealous, though: Jochum was conducting the concertgebouw [....]

After Eduard van Beinum died, Jochum was chief in Amsterdam for a while, sharing this conductorship with the young Bernard Haitink.
Jochum a.o. conducted the every-year-traditional Bach Passion on Palm Sunday in the Concertgebouw.

And Chailly is better off in Leipzig IMO (and so are his fans): people there are more willing to allow him to conduct any piece he wants to conduct, no matter from what composer or which period.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on November 02, 2011, 08:46:06 AM
Yes, the SMP isn't among my favorites, either... but the Christmas Oratorio is. And I love the fact that he's doing it with the Gewandhaus O. in the first place, and with such a high profile, too...  even if the results don't all awe me.

Of course. The Gewandhaus is a great orchestra. And Chailly is an impressive maestro.
And yes, I agree that Chailly's style seems to work better in a piece like BWV 248. But in the end, he will never be one of my favoured choices in Bach.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: jlaurson on November 02, 2011, 05:14:24 PM

After Eduard van Beinum died, Jochum was chief in Amsterdam for a while, sharing this conductorship with the young Bernard Haitink.
Jochum a.o. conducted the every-year-traditional Bach Passion on Palm Sunday in the Concertgebouw.

And Chailly is better off in Leipzig IMO (and so are his fans): people there are more willing to allow him to conduct any piece he wants to conduct, no matter from what composer or which period.
Of course. The Gewandhaus is a great orchestra. And Chailly is an impressive maestro...

In truth, it's not necessarily that Chailly is better off in Leipzig than Amsterdam, it's in considerable part that Chailly is simply a much more mature, more interesting and, frankly, better conductor now than he was in his (early) Amsterdam days. (He was *really* young, then.) He now has the air of wise maestro... which nicely balances his repertoire choices (which are all over the place) along with his now considerable experience. In any case: what a lucky guy -- conducting first the RCO, now the LGhO... two ensembles among the few that still exist that have such a distinct, gorgeous sound.

http://www.weta.org/oldfmblog/?p=1664 (http://www.weta.org/oldfmblog/?p=1664), http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2010/11/dip-your-ears-no-105.html (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2010/11/dip-your-ears-no-105.html)

Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on November 03, 2011, 09:57:41 AM
In truth, it's not necessarily that Chailly is better off in Leipzig than Amsterdam, it's in considerable part that Chailly is simply a much more mature, more interesting and, frankly, better conductor now than he was in his (early) Amsterdam days. (He was *really* young, then.) He now has the air of wise maestro... which nicely balances his repertoire choices (which are all over the place) along with his now considerable experience. In any case: what a lucky guy -- conducting first the RCO, now the LGhO... two ensembles among the few that still exist that have such a distinct, gorgeous sound.

http://www.weta.org/oldfmblog/?p=1664 (http://www.weta.org/oldfmblog/?p=1664), http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2010/11/dip-your-ears-no-105.html (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2010/11/dip-your-ears-no-105.html)

Thanks for the link.

Nevertheless, I'd like to add that, also in cultural and musical matters, the Dutch and the Amsterdamned are still .... calvinists. Even, or even especially after the HIP revolution in the 1960s and 1970s.

Which means: shoemaker, keep to your last.

Bach has to be played by (semi-)HIP musicians and/or ensembles.
Not by the likes of a certain Bernard Haitink or maestro Riccardo Chailly.

Haitink never really got the chance to do Bach and was also put on the sidelines for Mozart and even Beethoven. And opera? No sir, a Concertgebouw chief doesn't do opera. (Since Mengelberg stated that opera was an inferior art, the calvinist Dutch, beside strictly instrumental music, only seemed to take religious vocal music seriously, like oratoria by Bach, Händel, Haydn et al.)

Chailly once did Bach's SMP in 1997 and was critized rather heavily after that. He had obiously hoped to do more Bach, but he (wisely) decided not to and managed to remain patient .... and now he is getting the chance.

The same goes for Haitink outside his home country: he has been conducting opera, Mozart and Bach (SMP, Boston 2008) without ado and to much acclaim. Things he always loved and wanted to do, but Amsterdam never or rarely gave him the chance.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on November 04, 2011, 11:03:32 AM
This wrong-headed as well as dogmatic, intolerant and... (might as well keep this word implied) is not designed to enhance the reputation of HIP crowds, whether full, semi or in any other proportion

Luckily indeed, the baroque is not the private preserve of a minority of pedants...

So you think sense of style is unimportant?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on November 05, 2011, 02:48:34 AM
I prefer HIP (surprise surprise) but I think that it's nonsense to forbid non-HIP-ers to play their beloved composers.

Haitink and Chailly (f.i.) should be allowed to play Bach or Mozart with their 'own' orchestras, if they want to. By not allowing them, you might take the risk to lose very capable maestro's, because at a certain moment they just leave. At least for Haitink this was one of the reasons. He could not conduct what he wanted anymore.

If such is the ultimate consequence of what Frans Brüggen once said: "if the Concertgebouw Orchestra plays Mozart, every single note is a lie" (during the so-called Nutcracker Manifestation, Amsterdam 1969), then I'm pro HIP in matter of results and contra HIP in matters of law making and strict dogma's.

Btw: Brüggen is not that strict anymore. He himself is already chief conductor of the Radio Kamerorkest (modern instruments) since 2001, and has also conducted f.i. Bach keyboard concertos with a pianist (Piotr Anderszewski).

Asked why, he said something like: "what matters in the end, is musicality and mentality."

Topic duty: I might have that Jochum recording somewhere on Music Cassette, but I'm not sure. I do recall listening once to a radio broadcast of one of his live SMP's (1971 performance?).
It was definitely not my cup of tea, but despite that I though it was a noble interpretation.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on November 06, 2011, 07:26:00 AM
Of course I think a sense of style is important; that is why I prefer Jochum to pedantic attempts at artificiously reconstructing an imagined past.
(+ emotive force & spirituality...)

I do not recall any historically informed musician who had nothing but a pedantic performance to offer.  So you have to tell me: Whom do you think of?
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: chasmaniac on November 30, 2011, 10:45:38 AM
A new release from Cantus Colln. Oddly, it's on Accent. Have they left Harmonia Mundi?

(http://www.qualiton.com/mm5/graphics/00000001/ACCENT242510001.jpg)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Pat B on July 31, 2013, 08:08:09 PM
Bump!

A few weeks ago I mentioned Koopman's SJP (ASIN: B000005EBW) in the purchases thread and somebody asked for my thoughts on it.

Full disclosure: I've only listened to it once. I'm not familiar with other versions. My background is in string music. Normally I wouldn't post any sort of review at this point, but since someone asked:

I thought it was really good.

Hope that helps. :D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2013, 07:39:35 AM
Agreed. :)

[....] Somehow I feel that the Johannes-Passion is closer to Koopman's own personality than the Matthäus. At least I prefer his studio recording of the first by far. The latter sounding too much 'investigated' and studious, IMO. [....]
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Opus106 on August 02, 2013, 10:09:14 AM
Agreed. :)

The 2010 model Marc was right all along! ;D
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on August 02, 2013, 09:18:20 PM
The 2010 model Marc was right all along! ;D

According to himself. :P
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on February 08, 2016, 11:41:17 AM
A new (live) recording by Peter Dijkstra and his Bayerischer/Kölner forces:

(http://i.imgur.com/J6WxBE1.jpg)

http://www.amazon.com/Bach-John-Passion-Tilman-Lichdi/dp/B018KT7E88/?tag=goodmusicguideco

I listened to Part 1 and I think I slightly like it better than his recording of the Matthäus-Passion, buy maybe that's mainly caused by the lady vocalists.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on February 10, 2016, 02:05:42 PM
Well. Dijkstras SJP as well as his other Bach recordings are on my wishlist, but I have to take my wallet into account
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 07, 2018, 05:16:09 AM
Please can I thank all of you who posted, this has proved very helpful. I have relied on the Gardiner for years and decided I really should treat myself to another recording. After reading all your suggestions I have gone with Herreweghe but added the 2017 Minkowski. I would be interested in any opinions of the Minkowski.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Mandryka on March 09, 2018, 09:43:30 AM
but added the 2017 Minkowski. I would be interested in any opinions of the Minkowski.

Thrilling, lots of momentum forward. I enjoyed the sound of it, as a sensual/visceral sonic experience.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 10, 2018, 12:43:16 AM
Thank you, I am enjoying both of them.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Mandryka on March 11, 2018, 11:49:44 PM
Review of Minkowski here

http://www.musica-dei-donum.org/cd_reviews/KingsCollege_KGS0018_Erato_0190295854058_AVIE_AV2369.html
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on March 12, 2018, 04:03:16 AM
Review of Minkowski here

http://www.musica-dei-donum.org/cd_reviews/KingsCollege_KGS0018_Erato_0190295854058_AVIE_AV2369.html

Mr. van Veen seems to be a tad unimpressed by the singing BTW.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 12, 2018, 06:45:25 AM
For a few years, Gardiners was the only copy I had and it will always be special. I do enjoy Minkowski's and feel the review was harsh, however now I want to listen to Jeannette Sorrell's recording. I never seem to be content with one recording of Bach's music.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on March 12, 2018, 07:21:48 AM
I never seem to be content with one recording of Bach's music.

Don't worry. This is a good prerequisite for participating in the discussions here.  :)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 12, 2018, 07:44:36 AM
Good to hear as I am not sure I have any other credentials, just a love for music - particularly Bach - a reasonable collection and an opinion. Thank you for making me feel welcome.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Mandryka on March 12, 2018, 08:00:25 AM
Johan van Veen is very sensitive about vibrato, as far as I can see he doesn't want to hear any of it basically, in baroque music. In a recent Grigny review by him, where I liked the singing, he grumbled about vibrato which I hardly noticed at all.  I don't know if this is based on HIP considerations or just his taste or what  , , ,  but I suspect  that the issue is complicated, and may depend on where in the note the singer starts the wobbling.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Mandryka on March 12, 2018, 08:02:18 AM
Good to hear as I am not sure I have any other credentials, just a love for music - particularly Bach - a reasonable collection and an opinion. Thank you for making me feel welcome.

Sorry, I was forgetting my manners and in truth, I didn't notice it was your first post. Welcome!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 12, 2018, 08:20:42 AM
Thankfully I missed the HIP wars, that said I prefer minimal vibrato and by default - not choice - had mainly HIP recordings available to me and bad internet access until recently. That said, I have enjoyed discovering Coates, Karajan, Shaw, Klemperer etc and their recordings of the MBM. I remember the shock of listening to a friend's Benjamin Britten recording of St. John Passion in English which I would still recommend to anyone who wanted to listen to the Passion with a very different interpretation. I am pleased that conductors like Stephen Layton now feel free to remove the straight-jacket of HIP fundamentalism and make choices based on the music alone.

Do I now need to put on protective headgear..  ;)
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on March 12, 2018, 10:47:35 AM
Good to hear as I am not sure I have any other credentials, just a love for music - particularly Bach - a reasonable collection and an opinion. Thank you for making me feel welcome.

This is a forum for music lovers, and we are many Bach lovers here, so also a warm welcome from me.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Marc on March 12, 2018, 11:23:12 AM
"Why isn't it allowed to sing baroque music with any vibrato, mum?"
"Because it's written, that's why!"

To some people, rule = taste.

Oh, and btw, Gorio1968, welcome here, plz enjoy the music, enjoy your own taste and enjoy the forum!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Gorio1968 on March 12, 2018, 11:58:10 AM
Preferences may be subjective, tastes may be personal when the dust settles Bach is still Bach.

Thank you all for making me feel welcome.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Que on April 07, 2019, 08:34:29 PM
Time to read up on the recommendations!  :)

Q
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: aukhawk on April 08, 2019, 11:24:12 PM
I remember the shock of listening to a friend's Benjamin Britten recording of St. John Passion in English which I would still recommend to anyone who wanted to listen to the Passion with a very different interpretation.

Britten was a fine conductor and performer of Bach - thanks for reminding me.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: Jo498 on April 09, 2019, 12:48:04 AM
I just remembered that I have Britten's recording in that big Britten conducts non-Britten box. TBH I am not sure I ever listened to it. The Brandenburgs were quite good if one does not insist on HIP style but the Johannespassion in English and 60s style seemed rather daunting. But I will listen to it this lenten season.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: aukhawk on April 09, 2019, 08:49:25 AM
(Off-topic) Britten's harpsichord solo in the 5th Brandenburg Concerto is probably the best I've ever heard.  I also saw him live conducting Purcell's Fairy Queen in a rather small venue (can't remember where, now) - seemed like as many performers as audience - that was a blast!
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: (: premont :) on April 09, 2019, 01:33:00 PM
(Off-topic) Britten's harpsichord solo in the 5th Brandenburg Concerto is probably the best I've ever heard. 

It was played by Philip Ledger.
Title: Re: Bach Johannes-Passion / St. John Passion
Post by: aukhawk on April 10, 2019, 12:08:44 AM
Really?!  Well I sit corrected, thanks.  It's still my favourite solo.