Concert Review: Apollo’s Fire & Apollo’s Singers: Bach’s St. John Passion

I was privileged to attend a fantastic performance of Bach's St. John Passion by Apollo's Fire and Apollo's Singers, presented by the University Musical Society (UMS) on March 15. The performance was appropriately presented at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Ann Arbor.  

Apollo's Fire, founded in 1992 by Jeanette Sorrell, is regarded as one of the top period-instrument ensembles.  Their performance of the St. John Passion has received excellent reviews and in fact was outstanding -- the period instrument ensemble was joined by singing actors from the affiliated Apollo's Singers performing the roles of evangelist, Jesus, and others.   As an instrument maker, I especially enjoyed seeing the performances of period instruments that one doesn't often see in concert, such as the Viola da Gamba and Traverso.

Reviews

Apollo's Fire Enhances "St. John Passion," New York Times, March 14, 2016

Apollo's Fire outdoes itself with resplendent fresh account of Bach's 'St. John Passion'Apollo’s Fire with Apollo’s Singers, The Plain Dealer, March 7, 2016

Apollo’s Fire Set To Tour Gripping St. John Passion, Classical Voice America, March 9, 2016

Apollo's Singers

Nicholas Phan (Evangelist)
Jesse Blumberg (Jesus)
Jeffrey Strauss (Pilate)
Amanda Forsythe (soprano)
Kristen Dubenion-Smith (mezzo-soprano)