from our Chairman
Dear Lover of Choral Music
The Johannesburg Bach Choir boasts a history of close on 50 years
of providing remarkable choral music to the public of Gauteng.
Unfortunately our noble cause is sometimes swamped by other minor
incidents (like government changes, sportsmen in disrepute etc).
That is why we would like to let you know that we are still here
and still singing!
Herewith we present our new electronic newsletter to you. This is
our first edition, and we plan to issue more at intervals of two
months. We hope that the newsletter will keep you abreast of our
activities and concerts and lighten your day with the odd anecdote
or story from the Choir’s ranks.
There is no cost involved in receiving the newsletter, and we
encourage you to get family and friends of choral music to sign up
for our mailing list. You can do this by simply using the button
below to forward to a friend.
Our next set of concerts will introduce the relatively unknown
Bohemian composer Jan Dismas Zelenka, a rare treat to music lovers
in this city. More details of the concerts can be found to the
Let the good voice flourish!
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
The Johannesburg Bach Choir was
started in 1964 under the guidance of Tony Fell with the object
of performing the lesser-known and smaller-scale works of Johann
Sebastian Bach. Its first concert was given by some 30 voices in
the same year.
Since then the Bach Choir has gone from strength to strength.
When Tony Fell moved to England in 1974 the musical leadership
was taken over by John Mitchell, who was then involved with PACT.
Subsequent conductors included several luminaries, including Robin
Walton, Weiss Doubell, EberhardKünkel, Douglas Reid, Colin Yorke,
Walter Butt, Dario Broccardo and Tim Roberts, the current Musical
The works performed by the Choir extend both forwards and
backwards in time from Bach and now encompass 16th to
21st century music. Some memorable highlights include
in C minor, Bach’s major works (Passions, Mass in B minor,
Oratorio) and, in collaboration with other Choirs,
of Gerontius and Mahler’s Symphony no. 2.
The members of the Johannesburg Bach Choir come from all walks of
life and are all amateur singers. All enjoy singing in the Choir
and making music together which transcends the banality of everyday
OUT AND ABOUT
have been up to....
On Sunday 24 February the
Johannesburg Bach Choir took part in a benefit concert for the
REEA Foundation, an organisation dedicated to epileptic care. St
Columba’s Church in Parkview, the venue for the event, was packed
to the gunwales with an appreciative audience. The items ran the
whole gamut of musical styles, from Baroque to modern.
The Bach Choir performed well-known excerpts from Handel’s
Messiah, as well as works by Bach and Mozart. Here, as with the
other items presented, the crowd gave voice to its enthusiasm.
Gregor Heidemann in a letter to the Choir , “Please pass on my
best wishes and a huge thank you to all members of the Bach
Choir. I think the Choir is very lucky to have Tim as the
conductor. The Choir added a different dimension to the concert.
I loved the first three numbers…”
The Johannesburg Bach Choir makes itself available to sing at
functions, company evenings, weddings and other events. And, of
course, it holds two or three concerts of its own annually, as it
has for almost 50 years already.
JAN DISMAS ZELENKA
Jan Dismas Zelenka, previously also known as Johann Dismas
Zelenka, is considered the most important Czech baroque composer.
His music is admired for its harmonic invention and counterpoint.
Born: October 16, 1679, Louňovice pod Blaníkem
Died: December 23, 1745, Dresden
Last album: Tiosonaten, Volume 1 (feat.
oboe: Burkhard Glaetzner)
Albums: The Lamentations of Jeremiah
(Chandos Baroque Players), Tiosonaten, Volume 2 (feat.
oboe: Burkhard Glaetzner), Requiem / Miserere (Ensemble
Instrumental Baroque & Czech Chamber Choir feat. conductor:
Roman Válek), Missa Dei Filii / Litaniae
Lauretanae (Tafelmusik, conductor: Frieder Bernius, choir:
Kammerchor Stuttgart), De Profundis / Miserere /
Requiem, Tiosonaten, Volume 1 (feat.
oboe: Burkhard Glaetzner)More
For more background information, read his full biography here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Dismas_Zelenka
Johannesburg Bach Choir is proud to be the first choir to perform
in c minor
in South Africa.