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On the Radio: NSO

Tune your radio dial to 90.9 FM on the first Wednesday of the month at 9 pm to hear NSO Showcase, broadcasts of recent concerts by the National Symphony Orchestra. Here is the program of this evening's installment:

March 4, 9 pm
Bach, St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244)
Helmuth Rilling, conductor
Soloists: Kate Royal, Ingeborg Danz, Thomas Michael Allen, Lothar Odinius, Christian Gerhaher, Georg Zeppenfeld
University of Maryland Concert Choir, Children’s Chorus Of Washington

This was, I recall, a noteworthy performance. Here is what our own Jens Laurson had to say about it back in 2006:

The Bach passions can center around the Evangelist, who does the lion’s share of the work, or shift to Jesus (not entirely inappropriate, either, come to think of it) when the latter is more outstanding than the former. With the notable Christian Gerhaher as Jesus, that’s exactly what happened. Strong, mature, pleasant, full of character – his was an outstanding performance. He was, in more than one way, to Jesus what Peter Schreier was to the Evangelist – and equally put his stamp on the performance, equally dominates the memory of the night. This is not to say that Lotha Odinius’s Evangelist was sub-par – far from it. Although not exactly stentorian, he delivered a felt performance that only got better the more he sang. His voice is less strong in the upper registers but compensated with a nicely ringing middle and lower register. Bass Georg Zappenfeld did well as Judas, Pilate, Peter, Second Priest et al., especially taking to “Mache dich, mein Herze, rein,” the work’s last aria. In timbre he was surprisingly close to Mr. Odinius, ever nimble, solid, never roaring. Tenor Thomas Michael Allen (a.k.a. Tom Allen) showed a large, operatic voice as the second priest and in a few arias.
Rilling, with a Message from Bach (Ionarts, April 14, 2006)

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