Bach, the Universe & Everything
Importance of Human Contact
The text of BWV 39 is based on Isaiah 58: 7-8, about offering food to your hungry neighbours and offering shelter to those without a home. Listen out for the chorus which starts with a step-motif that suggests the poor are staggering along in exhaustion, but then evolves to an intensely emotional, rapid fugue in two parts, depicting the warm welcome of shelter. The choice of this work is especially meaningful as this concert is the first time that the OAE has been able to return to its home venue of Kings Place, London since the lockdown began.
For most of us, the pandemic and social distancing have changed everything, but for those most excluded and vulnerable – very little has changed at all.
One of the things it has changed is our awareness of how dependent we are on each other, from our friends and family to the whole web of networked relationships that we inhabit.
As the poet Roethke put it, “In a dark time, the eye begins to see”. We are bound together, just as an orchestra is bound to its audience. The science of human development is clear that our sense of selfhood and agency are created in and through networked contact. We find ourselves reflected in the minds of others and we imagine each other into existence. At a time when we are deprived of so much contact, our imaginations have been unleashed to think about the unspoken, the unexamined, and how we are enriched as we reverberate and resonate with others, across difference. In this talk, Dr Dickon Bevington discusses what it might mean when we return to ‘normal service’ – can we extend our curiosity relentlessly?
PACHELBEL P129 Freu dich sehr, o meine Seele
LASSUS Timor et tremor
JS BACH BWV 39 Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot
TELEMANN TWV 44.42 Concerto in A minor (second movement)
Up Next in Summer 2020
This cantata is all about healing and enlightenment, reflecting on humanity’s salvation by God’s grace alone. The dramatic weight of this music is emphasised by the voice of Christ in three sermon-like solos, performed by Rising Star bass Dominic Sedgwick.
Who We Are In VR
BWV 138 is often described as one of Bach’s more experimental and modern cantatas. The text draws upon the conflicting feelings of anxiety for the unknown, the need to place faithful trust in God and the alternate reality of heaven. The resolution of this is heard at the close of the ...
The Science of Laughter
The antidote for the burdened and sorrowful soul in BWV 113 is God’s ‘healing Word’ which causes the heart to laugh again! This laughter can be heard in the Chorale and Recitative, with a burst of playful semiquavers in the continuo cello.
Continuing on the theme of gigg...