Notes and Editorial Reviews
The St John Passion occupies a special place in Johann Sebastian Bach’s output. Hardly any other work survives in so many and, at the same time, such different versions. This is because Bach made changes to the work for each of his Leipzig performances. For this recording, Hans-Christoph Rademann has chosen the fourth version of the Passion. Composed shortly before Bach’s death, it represents a return to the first version, augmented by larger instrumental forces. It is very close to the version of the Passion which has been mostly frequently performed since the first edition of 1830 – a mixture of the 1739 and 1749 versions – but by comparison, this constitutes an authentic version by Bach. The performers are the choir and ensemble of the Gaechinger Cantorey, under the artistic direction of Hans-Christoph Rademann. The soloists are Elizabeth Watts, soprano, Benno Schachtner, alto, Matthias Winckhler, bass, Patrick Grahl, tenor (Evangelist & arias), and Peter Harvey, bass (Christus).