Bach: St. Matthew Passion, BWV 244b (Early Version)
Bärenreiter - BA5099-90
- Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
- Editor: Andreas Glöckner
- Instrumentation: Double Choir (SATB + SATB), SATB Solos, Piano Reduction
- Work Languages: English, German
- Format: Vocal Score
- ISMN: 979-000653173-8
- Size: 7.5 x 10.6 inches
- Pages: 274
- Urtext / Critical Edition
Bach's St. Matthew Passion as we know it today evidently had a long history dating back before 1727. It is unclear whether the work performed at the Thomaskirche on Good Friday 1729 was based on a still earlier version. Whatever the case, the surviving version of 1729 presents the work in a form strikingly different from its later incarnation. For example, the opening section ends with the chorale "Jesum lass ich nicht von mir" which was replaced by the large-scale cantus firmus chorus "O Mensch , bewein dein Sünde gross" for the 1736 performance.
The well-known alto aria "Ach! nun ist mein Jesus hin" is still assigned to a bass in the earlier version, and the aria "Komm süsses Kreuz" calls for a lute instead of the later viola da gamba . Moreover, the pieces for double chorus only require a single continuo group. Other differences can be found in the instrumental scoring and voice-leading. The early version of the St. Matthew Passion is thus a most interesting addition to the great concert repertoire.