Today I was reading a FaceBook post from former LCH chorister, Heidi Hammel, and got inspired to work on a re-design of the postcard we will be sending out to announce the Bach Mass in B minor concerts. Carl had complained that the colors looked too dull, and I thought perhaps he was not happy with the portrait of Bach as an old man. Since Bach compiled the Mass in B Minor near the end of his life, I thought we ought to use that portrait rather than the more famous one painted earlier.
Anyway, Heidi posted a spectacular video of a solar flare from the NASA Solar Dynamics Observatory and I thought about using those gorgeous colors to brighten up the Bach postcard. So here’s a preview of the card that is going to the printer. You can also now see more clearly the underlay of the “Sanctus” from Bach’s manuscript in the background.
Much as we would like to present an authentic performance of this work, the fact of the matter is that we are using modern rather than baroque instruments, and women rather than boys to sing the soprano and alto.
Carl and I have been fortunate to have heard the famous St. Thomas Choir in Leipzig (where Bach was the Kantor for 27 years) — in 1996 and in 2007. There are 93 members of the Thomanerchor, and the boys, aged 9 to 18, rehearse five hours a day in order to perform a new Bach cantata every week and three public services every weekend. The boarding school receives over 2000 applications each year from prospective students. The choir concertizes in Germany as well as abroad.