J.S. Bach
Recommended Recordings


Matth■us-Passion (Fr■hfassung)

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Georg.Christoph Biller
Accompaniment/Orchestra:Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Thomanerchor Leipzig
Soloists:Ute Selbig, Britta Schwarz, Martin Petzold, Matthias Weichert, Thomas Laske
Instrumentation:Bassoon
Choir
Flute
Lute
Oboe
Orchestra
Organ
Recorder
Viola
Viola da Gamba
Violin
Voice
Oboe d'Amore
Oboe da caccia
Individual Works:Matth■us-Passion (Fr■hfassung) BWV 244b (BC D 3a)
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:Rondeau
Catalog Number:ROP4020/21/22
Year Released/Recorded:1. April 2007
Total Playing Time:66:51 / 55:06 / 42:08
Comments:David Glenn Lebut Jr said:

Ersteinspielung der Fr■hfassung aus der Thomaskirche Leipzig.

This recording is a must for all true Bach fans. Here, for the first time, we have the first version of the Matth■us-Passion (St. Matthew Passion), which was performed on 11. April 1727 and 15. April 1729, performed in the ediface that witnessed these performances (the Thomaskirche zu Leipzig) and performed by the ensemble that gave those performances (the Thomanerchor Leipzig).

There are many differences between this version and the later, more familiar versions (and some even between these versions) of 29. M■rz 1736, 23. M■rz 1742, and ca. 1743 bis um 1746 (the one most performed today). These are as follows:

1.) Most of the familiar ornaments are not present.

2.) In Movements 1 and 29, the parts that would have been sung by the ripieno Soprano choir in the latter 2 versions were only played by the trebble clef of the organs in each choir (the Soprano ripieno choir was only added in 1742 and in the version of 1743-1746).

3.) In Movement 8, the Flute accompanying the soloist is not present.

4.) Movement 17 was not included (although it was included in the text--albeit with verse 7 instead of verse 6 of "O Haupt voll Blut und Wunden").

5.) In Movement 19, the 2 transverse flutes were replaced by 2 recorders (flauti dolci).

6.) Movement 29 used the 6th verse of the Choral "Meinen Jesum la■' ich nicht" instead of the 1st verse of "O Mensch, bewein' dein' S■nde gro■".

7.) In Movement 30, the vocal soloist is a Bass, not an Alto.

8.) In Movements 34 and 35, the Viola da gamba solo is left out.

9.) In Movement 39, the solo Violin is from Coro II.

10.) In Movement 42, the solo Violin is from Coro I.

11.) In both Movements 56 and 57, the Viola da gamba solo is replaced by a Lute.

Thus for BWV 244b. In 1736, Bach again performed the St. Matthew Passion, with some differences as follows:

1.) Still no ripieno Soprano choir in Movements 1 and 29.

2.) Movemet 1 is same as above.

3.) In Movement 8, the Flute accompanying the Soprano solo is likely present.

4.) Movement 17 is replaced by verse 6 of "O Haupt voll Blut und Wunden".

5.) The recorders in Movement 19 are replaced by transverse flutes.

6.) Movement 29 is replaced by a setting of the 1st verse of "O Mensch, bewein' dein' S■nde gro■", as it appeared in the 2nd version of the Johannes-Passion (BWV 245, BC D 2b), only up 1/2 step from Es-Dur to E-Dur and exchanging the Oboes for Oboes d'Amore.

7.) In Movement 30, the Bass solo is replaced by a Soprano solo.

8.) Movements 34 and 35 still have no Viola da gamba solo.

9.) in Movement 39, the Violin solo comes from Coro I.

10.) In Movement 42, the Violin solo comes from Coro II.

11.) In Movements 56 and 57, the Lute solo is replaced by a Viola da gamba solo.

In 1742, Bach again revised and performed the St. Matthew Passion. The noticable revisions in this version are as follows:

1.) Coro II (due to repairs in the Nikolaikirche to the organ) has (in addition to the 2 Violoncelli, Fagotto, and Violone) a Viola da gamba added to the Continuo, and a Harpsichord instead of an Organ.

2.) In Movements 1 and 29, the Cantus firmus (which heretofore was performed on the trebble clef of the Organ) is given to a ripieno Soprano choir.

and

2.) In Movements 34 and 35, a Viola da gamba solo is added.

Between 1743 and 1746, Bach again revised the St. Matthew Passion. Most noticably, he changed the voicing of the Viola da gamba in Movements 34 and 35, and he totally revised the Continuo parts in all movements. Now, especially in the recitatives, there are no held notes in the Continuo.



This recording was made on Palm Sunday this year. It was just released recently, and can be found (so far) on jpc.de, amazon.de, and Rondeau Productions website.



Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • David Glenn Lebut Jr
Date First Submitted:05/13/2007
Purchasing:Suggested Purchasing Sources
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