The Lamentation of Christ by Sandro Botticelli (detail)

How will you spend your Easter? I hope that you will devote some part of it to listening to great religious music composed for the day. I am happy to recommend these recordings of Easter masterpieces, all available for listening here on Classical Archives.

Saint Matthew Passion by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

I personally have to listen to the Saint Matthew Passion at least once during Holy Week . . . or maybe three or four times. Fortunately, there are many great performances here on Classical Archives.

Here are two of my favorite performances. The first is from the Bach Collegium Japan and soloists, conducted by Baroque specialist Masaaki Suzuki.  The second performance is by Kings College Choir Cambridge and soloists, led by Roy Goodman.

I find new emotions, and new things to consider, in each performance. I invite you to share your insights by adding a comment to this blog post.

To browse all the recordings of the Saint Matthew Passion on Classical Archives, CLICK HERE

Saint John Passion by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

Lovers of a traditional, large-orchestra-based performance of a Bach oratorio will revel in this recording of the Saint John Passion, performed by the Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra and soloists. György Lehel conducts. Or if your ears favor a somewhat leaner approach, you might opt for a different, equally excellent performance by the Scholars Baroque Ensemble.

To browse all the recordings of the Saint John Passion on Classical Archives, CLICK HERE

Die Auferstehung unsres Herren Jesu Christi (“The Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ”) by Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672)

Every time I listen to this masterpiece by Heinrich Schütz, I am struck by its emotional power. There are touches of undiluted, inspired genius throughout, such as having the part of Jesus sung in near-unison by two basses after the stone is rolled away from the tomb. The effect is otherworldly. And the final chorus, with its repeated cries of “Victoria!” is astonishing. The fact that this work was composed by a man who was born 100 years before Bach makes it all the more amazing.

This performance is by the Dresdner Kammerchor and soloists, conducted by Hans-Christoph Radelmann. (CLICK HERE to listen.)

All of us at Classical Archives wish you a wonderful Easter.