Bach: St John and St Matthew Passions (5CD)

Harmonia Mundi
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Collegium Vocale Gent, Philippe Herreweghe

If Bach is the most inspired inventor of religious theatre, Philippe Herreweghe has shown his ability to analyse every aspect of his dramaturgy and his philosophical ambitions. And that is precisely what strikes one when listening to these two Passions - the supreme peaks of church music of all time. Their emotional impact derives from the extraordinary meticulousness with which the original creative gesture and the flawless architecture of the musical discourse are reproduced. As in a painting by an old master, the drama is embodied here ‘before our eyes’ with rare eloquence.

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Bach, J S: St John Passion, BWV245

Sibylla Rubens (soprano), Andreas Scholl (Alto), Mark Padmore (tenor), Sebastian Noack (bass)
Collegium Vocale Gent, Philippe Herreweghe

Bach, J S: St Matthew Passion, BWV244

Ian Bostridge (Evangelist), Franz-Josef Selig (Christus), Sibylla Rubens (soprano), Andreas Scholl (countertenor), Werner Güra (tenor), Dietrich Henschel (baritone),
Collegium Vocale Gent, Philippe Herreweghe