J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

St. Matthew Passion

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Philippe Herreweghe
Accompaniment/Orchestra:Collegium Vocale Gent
Soloists:Ian Bostridge, Tenor - Franz-Josef Selig, Basse, Sibylla Rubens, Soprano - Andreas Scholl, Alto - Werner G³ra, Tenor - Dierich Henschel, Basse
Individual Works:St. Matthew Passion, BWV 244
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:Harmonia Mundi
Catalog Number:HMC 951676.78
Year Released/Recorded:1998
Comments:Fifteen years after a first version, Herreweghe brings us an interpretation in search of a new balance between vocalisation and expressive language. He reaches here an extraordinary emotional level.

John NIHOUL said:

This new 3 CD set sets a new standard for the Matthaus passion - Herreweghe and Collegium Vocale at its very best !

Bryan Park said:

Amazing recording. Pricey, but gorgeous. Extensive liner notes. Includes a CD-ROM with all sorts of cool interactive features that I can't run because my processor is too

Mark Graves said:

Let me echo John Nihoul. For me, this is THE definitive St. Matthew Passion on record, NO exceptions. One might say it's also the definitive Herreweghe. Everything is superb: soloists, choir, instrumentalists, both in solo moments and as orchestra. "Erbarme dich" brought tears to my eyes the first time I listened to it -- I was simply overwhelmed by its beauty and pathos.
The extra CD-Rom makes this package a veritable "Musicology in a Box."
Five stars at the very least.

Eric Razali said:

This is the ultimate recording of St.Matthew Passion. Everything is precise, in the highest musical quality. Ian Bostrige sings with perfect clarity in a sense of drama as the evangelist. Andreas Scholl is superb..
There's a very interesting interactive CD-ROM about Bach and especially about this work (St.Matthew Passion), but there's some minor flaws in Bach's history (date, etc)

Jonas Wille said:

A sublime recording. The timbre of the orchestra and the soloist are perfect and you can hear how comfortable the baroque tuning is for the singers. There is just one problem with this recording - the tempo. In search of authenticity the peaceful grieving get lost in the high tempo. The worst exampel is "Mache dich, mein Herze rein", where the inner calmness, that we need after the dramatic death of Jesus, is lost...

Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • Christian de Voghel
  • John NIHOUL
  • Bryan Park
  • Mark Graves
  • Eric Razali
  • Jonas Wille
Date First Submitted:03/04/2000