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Saturday, 23. March 2019, 19:30
Archikatedra Oliwska, Biskupa Edmunda Nowickiego 5, Gdańsk

Location: Archikatedra Oliwska
Biskupa Edmunda Nowickiego 5

“If I were to hear a performance of one of Bach’s motets, I would feel as if in the very centre of the world,” wrote Carl Friedrich Zelter in a letter to Johann Wolfgang Goethe. We know that six motets by the German composer, construed as independent choral works, have survived. Bach wrote them in 1723–1729, when he was the cantor at St Thomas’ Church in Leipzig. These are religious compositions, with German lyrics, for a capella choir or with instrumental accompaniment. Some of them were commissioned for funeral ceremonies. However, death had a deeply theological dimension in Bach’s work. It is not construed as a gloomy, irreversible end, but as a beginning of new life. The motets are a contemplation, as it were, of the truth expounded by the composer, and their symbolic dimension is  in the harmony of the choral voices. They are an example of the highest artistry and proof of the genius of Johann Sebastian Bach.