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Dryden Ensemble presents Bach’s “St. John Passion”


The Dryden Ensemble presents Bach’s “St. John Passion” as the crowning event in its 25th Anniversary Season.

There will be three performances: Friday, March 13 and Saturday, March 14, both at 7:30 p.m. at All Saints’ Church, 16 All Saints’ Road, Princeton, N.J., and 3 p.m. Sunday, March 15, at Trinity Episcopal Church, 6587 Upper York Road, Solebury Township.

General admission tickets are $40 to 45 per concert, and student tickets are $10 with a valid ID. Tickets may be purchased at or at the door.

The concert is a rare opportunity to hear the “St. John Passion” in a rendition Bach might recognize. It is a choral work – but the choir Bach had in mind was not what most people think of today.

Bach performed the “Passion” with a choir of just eight singers, two singers per part, and those eight singers sang all the solo parts as well, including that of the narrator or Evangelist. This is exactly how the Dryden Ensemble will score its performances of the “Passion.”

The “Passions” will be led by Scott Metcalfe, music director of Blue Heron, an award-winning Renaissance vocal ensemble in Boston.

The choir includes eight Baroque singers: sopranos Teresa Wakim and Margot Rood; mezzo-sopranos Kristen Dubenion-Smith and Kim Leeds; tenors Jason McStoots (Evangelist) and Aaron Sheehan; and baritones William Sharp (Jesus) and Brian Ming Chu. The orchestra includes

There will be three related events, which are free and open to the public.current and past members, and two newcomers.

The Princeton Public Library will co-sponsor “Herr Bach and his instruments” at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 5, and “The Musical Aims of Bach’s St. John Passion,” a lecture by Michael Marissen, an internationally known Bach scholar, at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 8.

At 3 p.m. Saturday, March 14, at All Saints’ Church, Marissen and Metcalfe will be joined by theologian Ellen T. Charry in a panel discussion titled “Troubling Voices in Bach’s Sublime St. John Passion.”

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