Christ on the Mount of Olives
Even the most ardent Beethoven fans may not know his only oratorio. One year before he changed music forever with his Eroica, and one year after he wrote his Heiligenstadt Testament, finally revealing his increasing deafness to his siblings, came Christ on the Mount of Olives. Combining the emotive force of his Missa Solemnis with the theatre of a Bach Passion, this music is as much a masterpiece as it is rarely heard. Retelling the story of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, Beethoven’s music feels deeply personal; not a grand retelling of a biblical story but a humanistic exploration of what Sir Simon calls “a dark night of the soul”. Alongside the lament of Jesus Christ, we hear the torment and vulnerability of the composer. PROGRAM BEETHOVEN Christ on the Mount of Olives ARTISTS Sir Simon Rattle, conductor Elsa Dreisig, soprano Pavol Breslik, tenor David Soar, bass London Symphony Chorus London Symphony Orchestra
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