Saturday, March 31, 2012

Saturday night fever: BACH! BACH! BACH!

Meet my new favourite piece: the Bach B minor Mass. I've just been to the Lucerne Easter Festival where Andras Schiff conducted it on Thursday, with his own Capella Andrea Barca and a fine line-up of soloists and choir. Two hours without a break, but I could happily have listened to it for 24. Heaven. And there were swans outside on the lake, taking off to fly towards the mountains...

I can't bring you the exact wonders of this spirited, humane, intimate and technicolour performance - no recording. But instead - although it is extremely different - here is Eugen Jochum with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, recorded in 1982. The same orchestra gave a concert last night that was equally one of those "this is what great music is really about" events - this time with Mariss Jansons and Vilde Frang. More on all of that soon, but now you know where I've been this week.

Meanwhile, this slogan is brought to us courtesy of the Monteverdi Choir & Orchestra: