A musical journey in time: Christmas in Leipzig, 300 years ago. But why then, exactly? Because Johann Sebastian Bach was nominated the choirmaster of St. Thomas Church in the spring of 1723, and Christmas was the first major celebration during his period of service where he could show off his skill as a composer before the city's public. The night before Christmas Eve, the Hungarian National Choir and the National Philharmonic Orchestra, transformed into a chamber orchestra and aided by some outstanding soloists - with György Vashegyi as conductor - will perform Bach works linked to this time.
Bach composed Cantata No. 64 (Sehet, welch eine Liebe hat uns der Vater erzeiget) for the Christmas of 1723, and Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied (BWV 190) for New Year's Day. His role in Budapest's music scene came mainly in the '30s and '40s.
Gloria in excelsis Deo (Bach's sole church cantata written in Latin, BWV 191), may have been composed in 1742, but as a Christmas work it still fits the bill. Just like the first two works, Magnificat was also written in 1723, originally in E-flat ma...jor, though in this concert we will hear the 1733 version, which was transposed to D major. This Christmas Bach evening promises to be a thrilling artistic experience for the members of the Hungarian National Philharmonic and the Hungarian National Choir. As befits both the stylistic era and the genre, both ensembles will appear on stage in reduced numbers, applying the contemporary sheet-reading and interpretative principles used in authentic performances of Baroque music, and will be conducted by György Vashegyi, who has decades of experience in the genre. The concert will feature four experienced soloists, soprano Ágnes Kovács, alto Eszter Balogh, tenor Zoltán Megyesi and bass Christian Immler: all singers who have already taken the stage on numerous occasions for early music productions under the baton of György Vashegyi.
Presented by: Hungarian National Philharmonic
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