The first Bach Vespers with St. Anne’s Lutheran Church of the summer is on 30 June. We will be offering a performance of J. S Bach cantata BWV 2, Ach Gott, vom Himmel sieh darein along with other German Baroque music on period instruments. We’re also glad to welcome a couple of guest soloists to sing at Bach Vespers for the first time, so we hope you can join us!
We’re really pleased to be returning to the American International Church in London for a performance of J. S. Bach’s cantata Erschallet, ihr Lieder, erklinget, ihr Saite, BWV 172, known as the Pentecost Cantata. The cantata is performed within a service at the church at 11am on 9 June conducted by their director of music, Scott Stroman.
On Sunday 19 May we are performing in a special Bach Vespers service for St. Anne’s Lutheran Church, as on this occasion the Bishop of London, the Rt Revd & Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullally DBE will come to preach. This comes during a special time, in which the pastor of St. Anne’s Lutheran Church, Eliza Zikmane, a strong advocate of the Bach Vespers series, has been confirmed as the new Dean of the Lutheran Church in Great Britain.
We will be performing J. S. Bach cantata BWV 108, Es ist euch gut, daß ich hingehe, or ‘It is good for you that I leave’, a work that prepares the Christian for Christ’s Ascension. There will be other music besides, including a motet by Scheidt, an introduction to the Vater Unser by Schein and Bach’s motet Lobet den Herrn BWV 230.
Bach Vespers, at 6.30pm, is free to attend (with a voluntary collection) and all are welcome.
Moreover, we are particularly looking forward to welcoming a delegation from the World Lutheran Federation to Bach Vespers. At this special event we are thrilled to finally get to perform J. S. Bach cantata BWV 42, Am Abend aber desselbigen Sabbats. The famous opening instrumental Sinfonia has long been a concert piece in our repertoire but we haven’t, in living memory, had the chance to perform the entire work (because we tend to perform the cantata for the given Sunday, in an ongoing effort to stick closely to the Lutheran liturgical year as the music is in support of St Anne’s Lutheran Church’s act of worship).
We really hope that you will be able to join us for this event on 28 April at 6.30pm which, as ever, is free to attend. We will also perform other works by Bach as well as by other noted composers in the Lutheran tradition, Heinrich Schütz, Dieterich Buxtehude and Martin Luther himself.
Since taking over the Bach Vespers series in 2015, we have kept in close contact with Peter Lea-Cox, who started the series in 1982. We’re pleased to read that Peter can’t help himself but to continue the tradition down in Dorset, where he has organised local musicians and friends to present Bach cantatas and other pertinent music into a Vespers format at a church near Charmouth. We wish them all the best for their first of this season on 2 February.