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    St. John Passion

    Bach’s St. John Passion is one of the most beloved and important works in the choral-orchestral repertoire. It was likely first performed on Good Friday in 1724, which was the first Holy Week of J.S. Bach’s tenure as Kapellmeister at the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, a position which would span 27 years of the composer’s life and prompt an astonishing output of liturgical service music. Weaving together biblical, poetic, and liturgical texts into a single narrative, this dramatic oratorio is recounted through solo recitative and aria, alongside passionate ensemble crowd scenes (called turba choruses) and reflective commentaries (presented in the form of chorales and solo arias). Bach’s masterful use of counterpoint and fugal techniques beautifully serve the emotional atmosphere of this poignant reflection on the passion and crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Moving far beyond mere description and narration of scriptural events, the St. John Passion evokes wonderment and awe at the power and significance of Christ’s sacrifice. Bach reverently represents the central Christian mystery of salvation, which is summarized beautifully in the words of a chorale at the center of this work: “Through your imprisonment, Son of God, must our freedom come. Your prison is the throne of grace, the refuge of all believers. If you had not accepted slavery, our slavery would have been eternal.”

    March 24th, 2018 at 7 pm
            Trinity Christian Reformed Church –     Map
    March 25th, 2018 at 7 pm
             Fleetwood Christian Reformed Church –    Map