© Eric Montes
Bach Academy Bruges 2015
A Bach Academy that focusses on death, that is less lugubrious than it seems when you consider how Bach and his contemporaries and successors thought about aging, death and then – hopefully – their eternal rest in heaven. Their faith inspired the most beautiful music: Bach’s magnificent Trauer Ode, for instance, with which Philippe Herreweghe is opening the festival, or the four cantatas with which he is closing it. On Saturday evening, rising stars Vox Luminis return to Bruges to bring us funeral music by Schütz, Tomkins and Focus composer Purcell. Top soloists, such as Alexander Lonquich, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Maude Gratton and Barthold Kuijken, let us hear their most contemplative side. An exhibition, introductions, open rehearsals, family performances, a lecture by Christoph Wolff and the musically poetic Lamentarium complement this three-day multifaceted Bach festival.
But three days of Bach is never really enough. That is why we also have a couple of preludes to whet your appetite. On Wednesday you can enjoy some (improvised) Bach from jazz pianist Edouard Ferlet and harpsichordist Violaine Cochard - alias Frappé-Pincée - courtesy of the Kunstencentrum De Werf. And on Thursday we have the dance performance The Goldlandbergs, by Emanuel Gat Dance, organised in collaboration with Cultuurcentrum Brugge.