Solomon’s Knot: Magnificat

Magnificat
Christmas in Leipzig
Solomon’s Knot
Sony Music  19075992622. 75’09

Solomon'S Knot - Magnificat-Christmas in Leipzig

Schelle Machet die Tore weit
Kuhnau Magnificat in C
Bach Magnificat in E flat, BWV243a

The three composers represented on this recording from Solomon’s Knot were successive Kantor’s of Leipzig’s Thomaskirche between 1677 to Bach’s death in 1750. Johann Schelle (1648-1701) was a former choirboy under Heinrich Schütz in Dresden and Thomaskirche Kantor from 1677 to his death in 1701. Johann Kuhnau (1660-1722) may have been a cousin of Johann Schelle, and certainly worked with him, becoming organist at St Thomas aged just 24 and still a law student. He succeeded Schelle as Kantor in 1701 and was Bach’s immediate predecessor. Bach took over in 1723, and stayed until his death in 1750. Continue reading

Christmas in Leipzig: Schelle, Kuhnau, Bach

Christmas in Leipzig
Solomon’s Knot
St John’s, Smith Sq. 21 December 2015

Schelle: Machet die Tore weit; Kuhnau: Magnificat; Bach: Magnificat in E flat (BWV243a).

WP_20151219_20_19_47_Pro.jpgReturning for their fifth visit to the St John’s, Smith Square Christmas Festival, the Solomon’s Knot Baroque Collective presented a concert based on Advent and Christmas music from Leipzig, with pieces by the three successive Thomaskantor’s. The seating in St John’s was reconfigured from the usual facing-the-stage layout to one where the orchestra and choir were to one side, projecting about two-thirds of the way into the floor space, with the audience arranged on three sides. This was undoubtedly excellent for about one-third of the audience who found themselves sitting directly in front of them, but most of the audience had only a side (or a rear-end view) of the performers. Continue reading