Edinburgh Bach Choir has been a major music force in Scotland's capital city since 1909, following a proposal that "...a Bach Society Choir should be organised, consisting of about 30 members..." with the purpose of- along with many other similar societies- the study and performance of the recently rediscovered marvels and riches of Johann Sebastian Bach and making these works more widely known. Since its formation Edinburgh Bach Choir has been directed by a plethora of leading musicians and I was delighted to be appointed in 2017.  The performance of Bach's music has, of course, been a feature of concert programmes throughout the Choir's history- the St. John Passion and B minor Mass have been performed under my baton- but I have also endeavoured to reflect the spirit of a decision taken in 1922, when the Society agreed to allow music by composers other than Bach to be introduced! 

Recent performances have included Rossini's Petite Messe Solennelle, a concert of American music to celebrate Bernstein's 100th anniversary which featured his Missa Brevis and Chichester Psalms and, in 2018, a commemoration in association with Poppy Scotland of the end of the 1st World War. Durufle's beautiful plainchant based Requiem was paired with Rossi's Voices of Remembrance which sets WW1 poetry with additional poems read to dramatic effect by John Michie (see photo below.) 

Looking ahead and- once we are free of the restrictions of Covid-19- the choir has a variety of exciting concert programmes to present:

  • a concert that has become known affectionately as the '3 Bs': Bach motets, Beethoven choral version of the 'Moonlight' Sonata and Brahms Liebeslieder Waltzes;

  • A Hungarian programme with works by Kodaly;

  • The first performance of a significant new setting of the Requiem by James Robertson, a member of the choir;

  • Handel's Messiah. 

 

You can find out more about these exciting events and how you can join the choir by visiting the Edinburgh Bach Choir website. 

© 2020 by STEPHEN DOUGHTY

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