St John's Voices, fresh from their chart success with their debut CD of music by William Mathias, present an intense and inspiring concert of music for the Lenten period.
Bach's motet Jesu Meine Freude, considered one of the absolute masterpieces of baroque choral writing, contrasts verses from the Lutheran chorale with free settings of biblical texts to create a tapestry of huge richness and diversity. Howells' intensely personal Requiem was kept private for decades, following the death of the composer's son. Only released for performance in 1980, shortly before Howells' death, it offers an ultimately hopeful response to our mortality, with poignant and heartfelt workings of psalm texts alongside the two settings of the traditional Requiem Aeternam.
The concert closes with Domenico Scarlatti's epic Stabat Mater, written for 10-part chorus.