Chamber Singers Present a Program of German Sacred Music

September 27, 2017
The Baylor University Chamber Singers will perform a concert called “Jesu, meine Freude: Four Centuries of German Sacred Music” on Sunday, October 8, beginning at 3:00 p.m. in Armstrong Browning Library’s McLean Foyer of Meditation. The Chamber Singers are conducted by Brian A. Schmidt, Associate Professor of Choral Music. The 21-voice ensemble’s graduate conductor is Benjamin Cramer, and the accompanist is Jillian Gardner.
Opening the program will be three motets by late-sixteenth-century German composers: “O Lamm Gottes” (“O Lamb of God”) by Jacobus Flamingus and then “Wir danken dir” (“We Thank You”) and “Benedicta sit Sancta Trinitas” (“Blessed Be the Holy Trinity”) by Adam Gumpelzhaimer.
The eleven-movement motet Jesu, meine Freude, BWV 227, of Johann Sebastian Bach was written in the middle 1720s. The work takes its title from the hymn “Jesu, meine Freude” (“Jesus, My Joy”), based on a chorale melody of Johann Crüger.
Also to be heard on the concert is “Halt was du hast” (“Hold What You Have”) by Johann Michael Bach, older cousin and future father-in-law of Johann Sebastian Bach.
After intermission, the Chamber Singers will present the seven-movement Christ lag in Todesbanden (“Christ Lay in Death’s Bonds”) by Johann Kuhnau.
The program will close with “Zum Fest der Heiligen Caecilia” (“For the Feast of Saint Cecilia”) by Fanny Mendelssohn, older sister of German master Felix Mendelssohn. This piece, scored for vocal quartet, soloists, and chorus, dates from 1833. Cecilia was a saint and martyr of the early Christian church, honored as patroness of music since the late fifteenth century.
This concert is free of charge and open to the public. For more information, call the Baylor University School of Music at 254-710-3991.
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