Johann Sebastian Bach in Leipzig

Florilegium Portense is a collection of more than 260 sacred motets by the most famous European composers of the time, including Orlando di Lasso, Giovanni Gabrieli, and Hans Leo Hassler, printed in Leipzig in 1618. The series was an integral part of the study of strict-style polyphony in church and school choirs, as well as court orchestras, from which the Baroque music systems later emerged. It was also used by Johann Sebastian Bach at Leipzig Thomasschule where he worked as a cantor and played these motets in Sunday services alongside his own cantatas. We will hear seven motets by different authors from the collection Florilegium Portense, conducted by early music enthusiast Pēteris Vaickovskis.

In contrast, Johann Sebastian Bach's motets for choir are mostly written in memory of those who have passed away, but their solemnity and noble consolation evoke thoughts of death as a divine salvation from suffering. Under the direction of Kaspars Putniņš, we will hear Bach's most extensive motet Jesu meine Freude with a longing aspiration for Jesus and Komm, Jesu, komm whose gentle character sends a message of spiritual refuge. The authorship of the motet Ich lasse Dich nicht, Du segnest mich denn is wrapped in a veil of mystery, but this does not prevent one from admiring the indivisible wholeness of this music, where every word has the breath of music and the notes possess a living speech. The concert will be permeated by choral preludes from Bach's famous collection The Well-Tempered Clavier, forming a small organ mass performed by Jānis Pelše.


Johann Sebastian Bach, Erhard Bodenschätz, Christianius Erbach, Melchior Franck, Hans Leo Hassler, Orlando di Lasso


Latvian Radio Choir
Ainārs Paukšēns, viola da gamba
Jāmis PELŠE, organ
Conductors Kaspars PUTNIŅŠ and Pēteris VAICKOVSKIS