“A profound and rewarding experience” – Limelight Magazine
Making Music Speak – Bach Akademie Australia’s 2022 Season Launched
Bach Akademie Australia has announced its towering 2022 concert series: Bach and the Art of Dialogue
featuring four touring concert series covering seven different City and Greater Sydney venues.
Directed by Bach doyen and international violin virtuoso Madeleine Easton
– and featuring some of Australia’s finest instrumental and vocal interpreters of early music, supported by an all-star orchestra and choir –
the Bach Akademie is widely regarded as one of the brightest stars in Australia’s musical firmament.
The joy, power and passion begins in April with three Sydney performances (Paddington, Penrith and Chatswood)
of an all-Bach program named for the universally adored Easter Oratorio.
This wonderful, thrilling piece, the composer utilises a full choir and orchestra to amplify his message of pure joy and celebration.
The Easter Oratorio continues to uplift, inspire and comfort us all these many hundreds of years later.
Also featured are two of his best and most beautiful cantatas, written especially for Easter: BWV 42 and BWV
The Weapons of Rhetoric concerts in June (Sydney Conservatorium and Wahroonga)
take their name from famed writer and performer Judy Tarling who says in her book of that title,
“To ‘make music speak’ is the ultimate aim of both composers and performers alike”.
The ideas and concepts of rhetoric have produced music of unrivalled beauty, depth, and intelligence by many;
however, the sheer inventiveness of Bach’s music separates him from all others.
From his miraculous G minor Fuga for solo violin, to the 6 part Ricercar from his Musical Offering, ending with his much loved Double Violin Concerto,
no other composer in history wielded the weapons of rhetoric with as much skill, grace and heart as J.S. Bach.
This sumptuous concert – featuring Madeleine Easton with Neal Peres Da Costa, Daniel Yeadon and Julia Fredersdorff (pictured below left-right) –
also includes the Brandenburg Concerto No. 6 and a selection of chamber favourites.
September’s Spring series (Darlinghurst and Chatswood) is titled In Bach’s Orbit and features the work of JC Bach, Buxtehude, Vivaldi, Pachelbel and Telemann
– as well as a magnificent Cantata by the master J.S. Bach himself.
“The question of what makes true genius is one many artists and scholars have contemplated,” says Madeleine,
“and cannot be answered without debating the argument of nature versus nurture.
These concerts explore the key figures in Bach’s life who inevitably influenced and guided him throughout his life, both personally and musically.”
They feature renowned Australian countertenor Max Riebl (above right) and explore music by J.S. Bach’s much-cherished father-in-law Johann Christoph Bach,
his great hero Dieterich Buxtehude (whom he famously walked 280 miles to hear)
as well as Pachelbel, Vivaldi and Telemann – all of whom were greatly admired by Bach.
Their music is inevitably woven together, orbiting, influencing and ultimately producing the great art we celebrate today.
Finally, in November, Grazie in Grazia – In Thanksgiving: two concerts (City Recital Hall and Wahroonga)
showcasing great work of Italian and German composers, with the centrepiece:
Monteverdi’s great mass of thanksgiving, written in 1631 after plague had once again ravaged Europe.
“Great art comes from great hardship, and in presenting this work,” says Madeleine,
“we acknowledge the great hardship we as the human race have collectively endured over the last two years of our lives.
We give thanks to Monteverdi whose selfless act of composition has given us this heartfelt and consoling work.”
Part 1 begins in Italy with Monteverdi, interposed with works by other titans of the Venetian Renaissance, Marini and Gabrieli.
Part 2 is a journey to Germany through the music of Heinrich Schütz, Monteverdi’s great pupil and teacher of J.S. Bach.
The Akademie ends the year with the one composer whose ability to console and bring joy surpasses all others.
J.S. Bach’s mighty Christmas Cantata ‘Christen, ätzet diesen Tag’ BWV 63 is a true celebration of the spirit of Christmas and thanksgiving.