Seven years ago at this time we were getting ready to perform Bach’s St. John Passion, March 12 and 13th, 2004. After performing Bach’s monumental St. Matthew Passion in 2000, it seemed inevitable that someday Carl Crosier would want to do Bach’s St. John Passion, like climbing Mount Everest (because it is there!) The planning took well more than a year, including negotiations with the Musicians Union, contacts with artists, procuring the musical scores, recruiting singers for the Chorus and many other administrative tasks.
It was through the former teacher-student relationship of Max van Egmond (from Amsterdam) and Joe Pettit that we were able to engage this superstar. Max is considered to be “the” Jesus through his many recordings and set the standard for Baroque singing. Carl told everyone Max’s voice was the “only” Jesus he knew!
At Max’s first rehearsal with the LCH choir, where he sang “Es ist vollbracht” (It is finished), Carl was so overcome with emotion that he was unable to continue.
After two very successful concerts, here’s what Max wrote in the Crosiers’ guest book: I was impressed by the fine performances you have organized and conducted and played. I felt much “at home,” musically, seen the understanding of the style and the dedication of you both as well as many others. I certainly hope that our paths will cross again and my first visit to the Hawaiian Islands has really set off my appetite for more. BRAVO and THANKS. Best of regards from Max.”
And now we are getting ready for another Mount Everest (insane!) production, the Mass in B-Minor!