Next month the 25th season of American Bach Soloists (ABS) will get under way. To honor this milestone, almost the entirety of the programming will consist of compositions by Johann Sebastian Bach. Only the final program of the series will also investigate the impact of Bach’s influence on two major nineteenth-century composers, Felix Mendelssohn and Johannes Brahms.
The major work in the first concert of the season will be the BWV 243 setting of the Magnificat canticle. This composition features some of Bach’s most stimulating instrumental composition, imaginative choral counterpoint (to be sung by the American Bach Choir), and solo work for soprano (Clara Rottsolk), countertenor (Eric Jurenas), tenor (Guy Cutting, making his debut), and baritone (William Sharp). The program will also present two cantatas, one sacred and the other secular. The secular BWV 214 cantata Tönet, ihr Pauken! Erschallet, Trompeten! (Sound, ye drums! Ring out, trumpets!) will provide a celebratory launch of the season with (as the title suggests) rich instrumental sonorities and the resources of all four vocal soloists. The sacred BWV 130 cantata, Herr Gott, dich loben alle wir (Lord God, we all praise Thee), will conclude the concert with similarly joyous resources. The program will also include a single instrumental selection, the BWV 1067 orchestral suite in B minor, featuring elaborate flute solos that will be performed by Sandra Miller.
The San Francisco performance of this concert will take place on Sunday, January 26, at 4 p.m. at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church (1111 O’Farrell Street, just west of the corner with Franklin Street). Subscription packages range from $64 to $163, and single tickets range from $20 to $64. In addition, discounted single tickets are available for seniors and students with ID. Both subscriptions and single tickets may be purchased through hyperlinks on the Tickets page of the ABS Web site or by calling 415-621-7900.