Stetson School of Music Presents a Special Performance on April 11
In honor of Holy Week, the Stetson University School of Music will present a “unique and special project” that will bring together the Stetson Concert Choir, student soloists, faculty and guests to perform Bach’s “St. John Passion” on Tuesday, April 11.
Timothy Peter, Director of Choral Activities at Stetson, said the performance has been in the works for two years, thanks to a grant from the Apgar Foundation, and is part of the Sacred Music campus project and residency from April 5-11.
The project culminates with the performance of “St. John Passion” on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. in Lee Chapel inside Elizabeth Hall. It will feature Simon Carrington, of London and France, as guest conductor and tenor Derek Chester of Colorado as the Evangelist. Also performing will be the 52-student Concert Choir, nine student soloists, and a 20-piece Chamber Orchestra comprised of string and wind faculty from the School of Music, students and professionals from the Orlando area.
The public is invited. Tickets can be purchased online or at the door: $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 for area students and free with Stetson ID.
“This is a very unique and special project,” said Peter, D.M.A.
The performance is based on one of the four Gospels in the New Testament and recounts, through music and song, the final day of Jesus Christ’s life, according to the Book of John. Bach wrote the work after being hired as a church cantor in Leipzig, Germany, and presented it on his first Good Friday in the job in 1724, according to the website Bach Cantatas.
Although originally performed on Good Friday, the School of Music will present it on Tuesday because Stetson closes for Good Friday and the Easter holiday weekend.
“It’s the story of Jesus coming into the city, being put on trial and crucified,” Peter explained. “It’s pretty much an early Baroque opera. It’s a drama, but specific to the Passion story.
“Truly, it is a gift to and for all.”