J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

St. Matthew Passion

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Leonard Bernstein
Accompaniment/Orchestra:New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Individual Works:St. Mathew Passion
Record Label:Columbia
Catalog Number:Unspecified
Year Released/Recorded:1961?
Total Playing Time:2.5 hours
Comments:Ko Unoki said:

Dramatic recording sung in English-although Bernstein is certainly not a Baroque performance expert, he suceeds in bringing out the full drama of this piece. Absolutely electrifying!

Charles Fisher said:

Although an abridged english recording it was of a limited number of recordings Bernstein made into the baroque era. The soloists are unserpassed in brillance and interpertation. Charles Bressler singing of "I would beside my be watching" is a trememdous skill not only of beautiful tone but unsurpassed breath control on a long passage where there is NO break for a breath. I have a german recording and the tenor on it is not even close to duplicating what Mr. Bressler accomplished. I fell in love with the passion upon Betty Allen's rendition of "Have Pity Lord" The throbbing of the cello and basses plus the unquestioned beauty of the violin solo caused an emotional response unlike I have experienced since. David Loyd set a standard for the Evanglist that the sissy lyric tenors who normally sing this roll should hide their head in shame and not sing this roll again. The Evanglist really calls for a dramatic or heldontenor.

Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • Ko Unoki
  • Charles Fisher
Date First Submitted:12/01/1996