When Bach assembled the B-minor Mass in his final years, he crystallized his lifelong mission to express faith through music into one staggering compendium of intellectual and spiritual exaltation. Thunderous fugues and brilliant choruses wrest maximal impact from the combined forces of choir and orchestra, while focused solos for voices and their instrumental companions rival any opera in terms of tenderness and dramatic presence. The Mass is not a singular object; it is a synthesis of Bach’s music going back 35 years, built upon techniques and trends developed over centuries. The B-minor Mass is a pillar of human achievement on par with Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling or Shakespeare’s collection of plays, and to witness it live is quite simply an essential life experience.
Pre-concert Talk presented one hour prior to each performance. Free with ticket purchase.
Ask the Artist
Ask the Artist to follow the Thursday night concert. Free with ticket purchase
2 hours, 30 minutes
1 hour, 30 minutes prior to performance
S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium - Benaroya Hall
French conductor Ludovic Morlot has been Music Director of the Seattle Symphony since 2011. Among the many highlights of his tenure, the orchestra have won three Grammy Awards and gave an exhilarating performance at Carnegie Hall in 2014, as reported in The New York Times: “The performance Mr. Morlot coaxed from his players was rich with shimmering colors and tremulous energy.”
Dorothee Mields is one of the leading interpreters of 17th- and 18th-century music and is beloved by audiences and critics alike for her unique timbre and moving interpretations. Her flawless technique and the ethereal clarity of her voice also make her ideally suited for works by contemporary composers like Beat Furrer, Gérard Grisey, Hans Werner Henze und Pierre Boulez.
Avery Amereau has garnered much attention for the unique quality of her timbre and sensitive interpretation. The New York Times proclaims she is “a rarity in music” and “an extraordinary American alto on the rise.”
Kenneth Tarver is considered to be one of the outstanding belcanto tenore di grazia of his generation, acknowledged for his beauty of tone, virtuosic technique, extensive and even vocal range, coupled with an attractive and elegant stage presence.
Young German Bass-Baritone Andreas Wolf is a regular guest at major international opera houses and concert halls, working with conductors such as William Christie, René Jacobs, Marcus Creed, Helmut Rilling, Jérémie Rhorer and Raphaël Pichon.
The Seattle Symphony Chorale serves as the official chorus of the Seattle Symphony. Over its past four decades, the Chorale has grown in artistry and stature, establishing itself as a highly respected ensemble.
Mass in B minor
Bach’s Mass in B minor is generously underwritten by the Judith A. Fong Music Directors Fund. Kenneth Tarver’s performances are supported in part by the Melvyn Poll Tenor Fund.