Bach: St Matthew Passion
Harmonia Mundi HMC-802156.58 (2 CDs & 1 DVD)
Bach: St Matthew Passion, BWV 244: Part I Excerpts (17:45)
Bernarda Fink, mezzo-soprano; Werner Güra, tenor; Johannes Weisser, bass; RIAS Chamber Choir; Berlin Academy of Ancient Music / René Jacobs
This is René Jacobs first recording of the St Matthew Passion. He uses the layout of the Good Friday Vesper service from Bach’s time, with choirs front and back, rather than side-by-side. He also gives us extra soloists to complete the bi-choral effect. As ever, Harmonia Mundi’s production values are such that we are given several essays on the concept of the layout in Bach’s time, reflections on the new recording, full texts and biographies in a 176 page booklet, with sumptuous packaging.