Clare College Cambridge

The Clare Reformation Project

 

In October 1517, Martin Luther wrote his Ninety-Five Theses, and by tradition nailed them to the door of Wittenberg Castle Church in a provocative act which has come to symbolise the beginning of the European Reformation. On Sunday evenings during Lent Term 2017, Clare College will celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation with a series of cantatas by J. S. Bach performed liturgically in the College Chapel by the Chapel Choir, under the direction of  Graham Ross, the Director of Music. The acts of worship in Chapel will celebrate and explore the exceptional theological, cultural and spiritual legacies of the European Reformation and Counter Reformation which changed the face of the world.

The Choir will be joined by a variety of instrumental ensembles, led by the internationally-celebrated baroque violinist Margaret Faultless, as they perform these cantatas often alongside works related to, or inspired by, the genius of the Cantor of Leipzig. At each service an address will be given by a distinguished preacher, including The Right Revd and Rt Hon The Lord Williams (former Archbishop of Canterbury), Bishop Jana Jeruma-Grinberga (former Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Great Britain), The Very Revd John Hall (Dean of Westminster), Fr Timothy Radcliffe OP, and the great Reformation historian Professor Eamon Duffy.

The series presents performances of eight Bach cantatas as follows:

Sunday 22 January 2017, 6pm

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment Experience

Gott der Herr ist Sonn und Schild, BWV 79 (Cantata for Reformation Sunday)
Lob, Ehr und Preis sei Gott, BWV 192

Preacher
The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Professor The Lord Williams of Oystermouth FBA
Master of Magdalene College, former Archbishop of Canterbury, former Dean of Clare (1984-86)

Sunday 29 January 2017, 6pm

Cambridge University Collegium Musicum    

Was mein Gott will, das g'scheh allzeit, BWV 111
Monteverdi Beatus vir 

Preacher
The Dean

Sunday 5 February 2017, 6pm

Cambridge University undergraduate instrumentalists

Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin, BWV 125 (Cantata for the Purification of Mary)
Brahms Warum ist das Licht gegeben dem Mühseligen? Op. 74, No. 1

Preacher
Fr Timothy Radcliffe OP
Blackfriars, Oxford

Sunday 12 February 2017, 6pm

Clare Baroque

Ich hab in Gottes Herz und Sinn, BWV 92 

Preacher
The Rt Revd Jana Jeruma-Grinberga
Bishop of the Lutheran Church in Great Britain, 2009-2014

Sunday 19 February 2017, 6pm

European Union Baroque Orchestra

Jonathan Brown (CL 1993), bass

Ich habe genug, BWV 82 (Cantata for Purification)  
Mendelssohn Wer nur den lieben Gott läßt walten, MVW A 7

Preacher
The Very Revd John Hall
Dean of Westminster

Sunday 26 February 2017, 6pm

Cambridge University undergraduate instrumentalists (Rachel Stroud, leader)

Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich, BWV 150
Vaughan Williams Lord, thou hast been our refuge

Preacher
David Porter
Chief of Staff to the Archbishop of Canterbury

Sunday 5 March 2017, 6pm

Royal Academy of Music Baroque Soloists

Aus der Tiefen rufe ich, Herr, zu dir, BWV 131 
Buxtehude Magnificat

Preacher
Professor Eamon Duffy FBA
Emeritus Professor of the History of Christianity

Sunday 12 March 2017, 6pm

Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment Experience

Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott, BWV 80 (Cantata for Reformation Sunday)

Preacher
The Dean

 

The Choir is joined by period instrumental ensembles Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment Experience, European Union Baroque Orchestra, Royal Academy of Music Baroque Soloists, Clare Baroque, with two cantatas performed on modern instruments with undergraduate players from Cambridge University.  Over the course of the entire project every member of the Chapel Choir will sing a step-out solo.

In addition to the liturgical performances in Chapel, the Choir of Clare College, Clare Baroque and Graham Ross are joined by a stellar line-up of soloists: Mary Bevan, Robin Blaze, Nicholas Mulroy and Neal Davies to give the following programme at London’s St John’s, Smith Square on Thursday 30 March 2017:

J. S. BACH Gott der Herr ist Sonn und Schild BWV 79 
MARTIN LUTHER Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin 
JOHANNES BRAHMS Warum ist das Licht gegeben den Mühseligen? Op 74, No. 1 
GEORG NEUMARK Wer nur den lieben Gott laßt walten 
FELIX MENDELSSOHN Wer nur den lieben Gott laßt walten 
ISAAC WATTS O God our help in ages past 
RALPH VAUGHAN WILLIAMS Lord, thou hast been our refuge 
MARTIN LUTHER Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott 
J. S. BACH Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott BWV 80 

Tickets for this concert are available for sale at https://www.sjss.org.uk/events/choir-clare-college-cambridge-1.

Furthermore, on Friday 31 March 2017 the Choir have the opportunity to repeat a selection of the above programme, this time with student soloists, in The Southend Borough Council Concert Series 2016-2017 (Plaza Centre, Southend-on-Sea). The singers are once again directed by Graham Ross and accompanied by Clare Baroque.

Tickets are available to buy at http://www.southend.gov.uk/events/event/1469/concert_series_-_choir_of_clare_college_cambridge_and_baroque_ensemble and the Programme will run as follows:

J. S. BACH Gott der Herr ist Sonn und Schild BWV 79 

Eleanor Smith | soprano
Catherine Clark | alto
Christopher Holliday | bass 

MARTIN LUTHER Mit Fried und Freud ich fahr dahin
 
JOHANNES BRAHMS Warum ist das Licht gegeben den Mühseligen? Op 74, No. 1
 
GEORG NEUMARK Wer nur den lieben Gott laßt walten
 
FELIX MENDELSSOHN Wer nur den lieben Gott laßt walten 

Jessica Kinney | soprano 

ISAAC WATTS O God our help in ages past 

MARTIN LUTHER Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott 

J. S. BACH Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott BWV 80

Holly Holt | soprano
Rosie Taylor | mezzo-soprano
Alex Porteous | tenor
Toby Hession | bass