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August 2019

Bath Recitals: A Thousand Years of Baroque

Saturday 24 August 2019, 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
St Michael’s Church, Broad Street
Bath, BA1 5LJ
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Castle Howard

Oxford Bach Soloists welcomed as guests of the Bath Recitals: 'A Thousand Years of Baroque' in celebration of the opulence and grandeur of the Baroque featuring music by Handel, Bach, and Scarlatti!

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September 2019

Sanctus

Sunday 1 September 2019, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15

A stirring Sanctus in C major, and three cantatas with big statements: BWV 179 preaches against hypocrisy with marvelous directness; BWV 77 illustrates the second of Jesus’ two commandments recounted in the gospel narratives; and BWV 69a enjoins us to praise the Lord and ‘do not forget what good He has done for you!’

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October 2019

Sound In My Body

Sunday 6 October 2019, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Sound in my Body

Throughout the long summer and autumn Trinitarian period, the Lutheran lectionary’s emphasis on sin and sickness in mind and body reaches full tilt in expressions such as ‘The whole world is but a hospital’ in Cantata 25. But Bach’s music is the ‘balm of Gilead’ that heals all, above the ceaseless lament.

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November 2019

Help My Unbelief

Sunday 3 November 2019, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Tom Hammond-Davies

The cantatas Bach was writing at this time deal with the theme of Christians rejecting the material world and its temptations so as not to risk losing union with God. Cantata 162 relates to the parable of the royal wedding feast to which ‘many are called but few are chosen’.

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Lutheran Vespers

Sunday 17 November 2019, 5:45 pm - 6:45 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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A service of Lutheran Vespers featuring Bach’s Cantata 115 Mache dich, mein Geist, bereit. Performed by New College Choir, conducted by Robert Quinney, with the orchestra of the Oxford Bach Soloists. 

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December 2019

Macmillan: A Celebration of Christmas

Friday 6 December 2019, 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Christ Church Cathedral, St. Aldates
Oxford, OX1 1DP
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Macmillan Christmas

The Oxford Bach Soloists will be performing for the second year at the 'A Celebration of Christmas' concert as part of Macmillan Cancer Support's fund-raising activities. 

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Bath Recitals: A Baroque Christmas

Saturday 14 December 2019, 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
St Michael’s Church, Broad Street
Bath, BA1 5LJ
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OBS Christmas

Oxford Bach Soloists welcomed as guests of the Bath Recitals: 'A Baroque Christmas' which brings the Bath Recitals 2019 programme to a seasonal close.

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Magnificat: Cantatas for Christmas

Tuesday 24 December 2019, 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £25
Daniel Norman, Tenor

** SOLD OUT ** Please contact info@oxfordbachsoloists.com to be put on the waiting list.** Bach’s first Christmas in Leipzig comes with an explosion of festive music. After Advent’s ‘tempus clausum’ (closed period), Bach laid on nine major pieces for his singers and instrumentalists to master, including the Magnificat in E flat major, more commonly heard in its later D major version.

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January 2020

The Magi

Sunday 12 January, 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
OBS Magi

Hot off the heels of his first Christmas in Leipzig, Bach presents us with a vibrant set of Cantatas for the New Year and Epiphany. Cantata 190 is a paean heralding the New Year, and Cantata 153 takes the dramatic story of Herod and the Massacre of the Innocents as its inspiration. Epiphany is ushered in as a pair of horns brings the wise men with their gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh in Cantata 65.

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February 2020

Calm the Storm

Sunday 9 February, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Calm the Storm

Cantata 155 displays the 31-year-old Bach’s enchanting innovation in his younger days with one of the finest bassoon obbligati ever written. Cantatas 73 and 81 take as their starting point two of Christ’s miracles: the healing of the leper, and the calming of the storm. The joyful Cantata 83 is possibly Bach’s first Cantata for the feast of the Purification of Mary and the Presentation of Jesus at the Temple (Candlemas) in which Simeon sings his famous Nunc dimittis.

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March 2020

Pantomime Villains

Sunday 1 March, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Pantomime Villains

In the lead up to Lent, three cantatas based on parables: Cantata 144, based on the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard, reveals an alto aria with a sustained melody of great beauty; and Cantatas 181 and 18, both based on the Parable of the Sower, projecting dramatic scenes of spasmodic birds pecking at the scattered seed, and a furious litany in which Bach rains fire and brimstone on the ‘pantomime villains, the Turks and the Papists’.

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April 2020

TBS Farnham: St John Passion

Saturday 4 April, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
St. Thomas-on-the-Bourne, Frensham Road
Farnham, GU9 8HA United Kingdom
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THD in concert

***POSTPONED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** The Oxford Bach Soloists debuts as honoured guests of the Tilford Bach Society. Presenting one of Bach’s most treasured masterpieces, the St John Passion BWV 245, they will perform as part of the Society’s programme of illustrious concerts in St Thomas on the Bourne, Farnham. Evangelist: Ben Johnson Christ: Humphrey Thompson.

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Easter Weekend: St John Passion

Friday 10 April, 1:30 pm - 3:30 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £25.00
St John Passion

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** One of Bach’s best loved works, the St John Passion was first performed on Good Friday of 1724 in the St. Nicholas Church, Leipzig. ‘More daring, forceful and poetic’ than the St Matthew Passion, according to Schumann, this operatic work is presented by an ensemble of soloists, four-part choir, strings and basso continuo together with pairs of flauti traversi and oboes doubling on oboe da caccia. Bach also uses viola d’amore and viola da gamba to create special colours within the instrumental mix. The narrative is led by the Evangelist with an impressive line-up including Jesus, Pilate, Peter, a maid and a servant.

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St John Passion from Isolation

Friday 10 April, 3:00 pm - Sunday 31 May, 4:00 pm
YouTube
Paulo Troilo - Vitruvian Man

Thank you to Paolo Troilo for our cover image for this concert - if you want to see more of his brilliant hyperrealistic fingerpainting check out his Instagram page. St John Passion from Isolation We were truly devastated to have to cancel our Easter concerts, so we have been working really hard in collaboration with production company Positive Note to bring you a really special performance of Bach's St John Passion recorded by the Oxford Bach Soloists and many guest…

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Easter Weekend: Easter Oratorio

Saturday 11 April, 3:00 pm - 4:45 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £25.00
Easter Oratorio

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** Two of Bach’s earliest cantatas for Easter Day, Christ lag in Todesbanden and Der Himmel lacht! Die Erde jubiliert are performed here in their revived Leipzig versions. The story takes us from darkness to blazing light, from grief to joy, echoed in the dramatic Easter Oratorio. Told by four characters Mary Magdalene, Mary Jacobe, Simon Peter, and John the Apostle, it canters to the end in triumphant victory.

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Easter Weekend: Rejoice You Hearts

Sunday 12 April, 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £25.00
Rejoice, You Hearts

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** Abundant joy, rushing swirling scales, and fanfare-like arpeggios set the scene for the Resurrection in Bach’s Cantatas for Easter Monday, Easter Tuesday, and Quasimodogeniti (’Low’ Sunday). Join our Virtuosi soloists as they lead us through Bach’s panoply of pastoral colours, brilliant coloratura, and triumphant pageantry.

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Easter Weekend: The Lord is my Shepherd

Monday 13 April, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £25.00
The Lord is my Shepherd

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** Described as ‘one of the truly perfect cantatas, flawless in every detail’, Cantata 104 draws its inspiration from Psalm 23 ‘The Lord is my Shepherd’. Full of leisurely melodies and flourishes, it finds refreshment, green pastures and a foretaste of heaven. As we move towards Christ’s Ascension and departure from the earth, Cantata 166 is in a rather uncertain vein asking the question ‘Where are you going?’ yet Bach’s music is always full of hope. Clearing the skies to joy and laughter, this concert ends with Cantata 37 depicting the soul winging heavenward.

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May 2020

Resound, Ye Songs!

Sunday 3 May, 3:00 pm - 4:15 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Resound Ye Songs

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** Bach’s earliest works are often considered to be his most inventive, full of daring ideas. Cantata 12 is considered one of his most affecting compositions, the opening of which was to find its way into the B Minor Mass. Now one year in his post as Thomaskantor, he revived his Pentecost Cantatas 59 and 172 for the 2nd and 3rd time respectively. Dating from 1714 during his employment in service of the Dukes of Weimar, the effulgent cantata ‘Erschallet, ihr Lieder, erklinget, ihr Saiten!’ depicts the fiery arrival of the Holy Spirit.

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Lutheran Vespers

Sunday 17 May, 5:45 pm - 6:45 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Lutheran Vespers

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** A service of Lutheran Vespers featuring Bach’s Cantata 86 Wahrlich, wahrlich, ich sage euch. Performed by New College Choir, conducted by Robert Quinney, with the orchestra of the Oxford Bach Soloists.

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June 2020

Festival of Joy

Sunday 7 June, 3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
New College Chapel, Holywell Street
Oxford, OX1 3BN
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Free – £15
Festival of Joy

***CANCELLED DUE TO CORONAVIRUS Please click for more information*** A trio of cantatas drawn from earlier works, deftly reworked to suit their new contexts. The Pentecostal cantatas 173 and 184 find their roots in secular Serenatas written for Prince Leopold at Cöthen, their imagery ingeniously preserved so that association between words and music is unharmed. Cantata 194, written for the dedication of the church and organ at Störmthal in 1723, was probably also based on a lost Cöthen work and is revived here in full festal splendour for Trinity Sunday in 1724.

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