Wolfgang Rihm - Deus Passus (Passions-Stücke nach Lukas) (2001) 2CDs
Juliane Banse, soprano; Iris Vermillion, mezzo-soprano; Cornelia Kallisch, alto
Christoph Prégardien, tenor; Andreas Schmidt, baritone
Gächinger Kantorei; Bach-Collegium Stuttgart; Helmuth Rilling, conductor
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 330 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 228 Mb | Artwork included
Classical, Choral | Label: Hänssler Classic | # CD 98.397 | Time: 01:30:24
Deus Passus is one quarter of the Passion Project 2000, which celebrated not only the turning of the millennium but also commemorated the 250th anniversary of Bach’s death. German conductor Helmuth Rilling honored this occasion by commissioning Passions from four disparate composers: Wolfgang Rihm, Tan Dun, Sofia Gubaidulina, and Osvaldo Golijov. Deus Passus is a setting of the Passion according to St. Luke, and it is a marvel of a piece for many reasons. For a full hour and a half, with music that is mostly slow and largely atonal (in the sense that Berg’s music is atonal), the twisting, aching, unpredictable harmonies are totally captivating. Rihm chooses a straightforward setting, a simple, dramatic telling of the story, and it is in his capacity for restraint that the true brilliance of the piece lies. He uses the chorus sparingly, mostly for dramatic purposes, having it portray the angry rabble bent on crucifying Jesus (as it often does in Bach’s passions).