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Bach: Johannes Passion / Sigiswald Kuijken, La Petite Bande

Bach,J.s. / Hamann / Genz / Petite Bande / Kuijken
Release Date: 09/11/2012 
Label:  Challenge   Catalog #: 72545   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jens HamannWalter TestolinKnut SchochChristoph Genz,   ... 
Conductor:  Sigiswald Kuijken
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 1 Hours 45 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews



BACH Saint John Passion Sigiswald Kuijken (cond); Christoph Genz (Evangelist); Jens Harmann (Jesus); Gerlinde Sämann (sop); Petra Noskaiová (mez); La Petite Bande (period instruments) CHALLENGE CC72545 (2 SACDs: 105:04 Text, no Translation)


Sigiswald Kuijken here presents the original version of the Saint Read more John Passion , noting that it remains the most popular of the four versions that Bach himself performed during his tenure in Leipzig. Kuijken is a stanch believer in the one-to-a-part mode of Bach performance, and he has made this recording with a minimal ensemble of four vocal soloists—singing character parts as well as recitatives and arias, four ripieno singers, seven string players, two flutes, two oboes, a lute, and an organ. Incidentally, the company is 14 percent Kuijken’s: Marie as ripieno soprano, Sara on second violin and viola d’amore, and Sigiswald, the first violinst, gambist, and violist d’amore, as well as conductor. His is not the first chamber recording of Saint John , but it is the most satisfying. Some minimal performances have been successful in most respects, but a little light in the two great choruses. That’s not the case here; the choruses are satisfyingly rich, which I attribute to his superlative vocal group. Mature female voices—soloists and ripienists—contribute substantially to the richness. We can be thankful that Kuijken has chosen to depart from historical verisimilitude with regard to gender.


Kuijken lays out the story dramatically, thanks in no small part to Christoph Genz’s excellent Evangelist and Jens Harmann’s noble Jesus. Kuijken’s penchant for brisk tempos surfaces from time to time, as in the aria “Ich folge dir gleichfalls” in Part 1, which left me—but assuredly not soprano Gerlinde Sämann—a little short of breath. Sämann is given more slack in her Part 2 aria “Zerfließe, mein Herze,” to good effect. Alto Petra Noskaiová is splendid as well, especially in the signature aria “Es ist vollbracht,” where her elegant singing is partnered by Kuijken’s poignant gamba. Haste is not an issue in the great final chorus “Ruht wohl,” which is sung with appropriate dignity.


Collectors acquiring their first Saint John Passion should be aware that the German text is not translated. That the booklet fails to identify who sings the various arias and recitatives, either by name or by part, is a minor annoyance. Nevertheless, Kuijken’s Saint John Passion is a splendid achievement, enthusiastically recommended.


FANFARE: George Chien
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Works on This Recording

1.
Saint John Passion, BWV 245 by Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer:  Jens Hamann (), Walter Testolin (), Knut Schoch (),
Christoph Genz (), Marie Kuijken (), Gerlinde Sämann ()
Conductor:  Sigiswald Kuijken
Period: Baroque 
Written: 1724; Leipzig, Germany 
Venue:  Academiezaal, St. Truiden (B) 
Length: 75 Minutes 19 Secs. 

Sound Samples

Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Chorus: Herr, unser Herrscher
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Jesus ging mit seinen Jüngern - Chorus: Jesum von Nazareth - Recitative: Jesus spricht zu ihnen
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Chorale: O große Lieb
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Auf dass das Wort erfüllet würde
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Chorale: Dein Will gescheh
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Die Schar aber und der Oberhauptmann
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Aria: Von den Stricken meiner Sünden
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Simon Petrus aber folgete Jesu
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Aria: Ich folge dir gleichfalls
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Derselbige Jünger
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Chorale: Wer hat dich so geschlagen
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Recitative: Und Hannas sandte ihn - Chorus: Bist du nicht seiner Jünger einer? - Recitative: Er leugnete aber und sprach
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Aria: Ach, mein Sinn
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 1: Chorale: Petrus, der nicht denkt zurück
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: Christus, der uns selig macht
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Da führeten sie Jesum von Kaipha vor das Richthaus - Chorus: Wäre dieser nicht ein Übeltäter
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: Ach, großer König
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Da sprach Pilatus zu ihm - Chorus: Nicht diesen, sondern Barrabam! - Recitative: Barrabas aber war ein Mörder!
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Arioso: Betrachte, meine Seel
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Aria: Erwäge, wie sein blutgefärbter Rücken
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Und die Kriegsknechte flochten - Chorus: Sei gegrüßet, lieber Judenkönig - Recitative: Und gaben ihm
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: Durch dein Gefängnis
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Die Jüden aber schrieen und sprachen - Chorus: Lässest du diesen los - Recitative: Da Pilatus das Wort hörete
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorus & Aria: Eilt, ihr angefochtnen Seelen
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Allda kreuzigten sie ihn - Chorus: Schreibe nicht: der Jüden König - Recitative: Pilatus antwortet
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: In meines Herzens Grunde
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Die Kriegsknechte aber - Chorus: Lasset uns den nicht zerteilen - Recitative: Auf dass erfüllet würde
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: Er nahm alles wohl in acht
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Und von Stund an
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Aria: Es ist vollbracht
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Und neigte das Haupt
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorus & Aria: Mein teurer Heiland
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Und siehe da
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Aria: Mein Herz, in dem die ganze Welt
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Aria: Zerfließe, mein Herze
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Die Jüden aber
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: O hilf, Christe, Gottes Sohn
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Recitative: Darnach bat Pilatum
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorus: Ruht wohl, ihr heiligen Gebeine
Johannes-Passion, BWV 245, Pt. 2: Chorale: Ach Herr, laß dein lieb Engelein

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