New York Arts > J.S. Bach
Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra and Choir, Ton Koopman, Conductor, in Bach’s Magnificat and Two Leipzig Cantatas
Last September I attended a remarkable performance of Bach’s B Minor Mass at Emmanuel Church in Boston tonk under their admirable new Music Director, Ryan Turner, who is a singer and came to Emmanuel Music as a member of the chorus. By working his singers and instrumentalists into a deep literal and spiritual understanding of the score and giving them a great deal of expressive freedom, he revealed the spirit of the Mass in the most direct and moving way. In it, Bach plotted his course toward the happy state of the faithful Christian, who is blessed with some intimation or perhaps experience of the Kingdom of Heaven. On March 15 in Alice Tully Hall I shared in an equally life-affirming experience in a concert which explored other joyful aspects of Bach’s church music. While the approach of Ton Koopman and his Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra was more historically conscious and intellectually distanced, the spirit of the music and its liturgical message came across no less vividly. It was in fact a joy in itself to hear some of Bach’s greatest music played and sung with such accuracy, sureness, and understanding.