Last week, Early Music Vancouver welcomed the season with a pair of performances of Festive Cantatas: J.S. Bach Magnificat & Cantata BWV 110 (Let Our Mouth Be Full of Laughter). Audiences at Kay Meek Arts Centre in West Vancouver and Chan Centre for Performing Arts at UBC got into the festive spirit, with the pair of works by Bach.
Whilst serving as choir director of the revered boys’ choir of St. Thomas church in Leipzig, one of Bach’s major tasks was to provide annual cycles of cantatas for each Sunday. In his first year of taking up the post, Bach set the text of the (Latin) Magnificat with four inserted (German) hymns for a performance at Christmas, giving birth to one of his most popular and festive compositions. Cantata 110, composed by Bach in 1725, is paired with Magnificat for this holiday performance.
Under the inspired direction of Alexander Weimann, Vancouver’s Pacific Baroque Orchestra is joined by three natural trumpets (without valves), as well as baroque oboes, flutes and a quintet of stellar of singers, Hélène Brunet and Arwen Myers, sopranos; Krisztina Szabo, alto; Jacques-Olivier Chartier, tenor; and Sumner Thompson, bass.
If you missed out on these performances, Early Music Vancouver recorded the December 18th performance at the beautiful Chan Centre for Performing Arts and starting this evening, December 22 at 7:30pm, the production becomes part of the Digital Concert Hall for on demand viewing so you and your family can enjoy the Festive Cantatas at home.
Purchasing a single ticket access to the Digital Concert Hall or a season’s subscription for all the on demand performances would make a great Christmas gift.