It could be argued that J.S. Bach’s Mass in B Minor should have been titled ‘Bach’s Greatest Hits’, for that is what Bach himself aimed to achieve with this masterpiece. Composed over the final 25 years of his life and completed just one year before he died, the Mass is scattered with music and references that Bach considered to be his best work, or movements which he had allowed to develop over time and had returned to ‘perfect’ at a later date.
Never performed complete in his lifetime, the work is in effect Bach’s own self-obituary, how he wanted to be remembered by the world. If you have never heard it live, this is absolutely one concert you must not miss.
‘It is the best of him, and it helps bring out the best in us.’