Stephen Francis Vasta
, January 2013
BACH, J.S.: St. Matthew Passion (Biller) (NTSC) ACC-20256
BACH, J.S.: St. Matthew Passion (Biller) (Blu-ray, Full-HD) ACC-10256
Georg Christoph Biller’s straightforward, flowing tempos have just enough breadth to convey the appropriate dignity for Bach’s St. Matthew Passion…He’s sensitive to matters of pacing, maintaining the sense of momentum through the various transitions among recitatives, choral interjections and set pieces. In Biller’s hands, this St. Matthew is not just an extended act of reverence but a real liturgical drama. He’s got the chorus of men and boys trained nicely. Their sound, whether in homogeneous chorales or in busy counterpoint, is full-bodied yet transparent; even the altos…register clearly within the textures.
The soloists are well chosen…Wolfram Lattke’s full-throated Evangelist, compelling and urgent, helps keep the show moving.
Klaus Mertens is a firm, dignified Jesus, responsive without turning sanctimonious. Bass Gotthold Schwarz sings…“Komm, süsses Kreuz” with legato and real sweetness.
The smaller roles…are taken by various members of the choir. They all sing competently…
The videography is conservative and…well judged…The sound is vivid… © 2013 Opera News Read complete review