Bach: Erbarme Dich
a nocte temporis; Mechelen, Reinoud Van; Alard, Benjamin; Besson, Anna
The young tenor Reinoud Van Mechelen, whose career is currently in full flower, appears as a guest soloist with today’s leading conductors of Baroque music. He has decided to devote his first solo album to a composer whom he interprets with elegance and contagious joy: Johann Sebastian Bach. The title ‘Erbarme dich’ naturally evokes for music lovers the celebrated alto aria from the St Matthew Passion; but it is also the incipit of a sorrowful, sensuous aria for tenor and flute from the Cantata BWV 55. In fact, a substantial corpus of cantatas written by the Kantor in Leipzig between 1724 and 1726 feature a close dialogue between tenor voice and flute. Bach excels in this art of discourse and enjoys underlining or contradicting the text by sketching with the flute lines full of exacerbated vocality. This art of interweaving voices attracted Reinoud Van Mechelen and the flautist Anna Besson, who have chosen, along with the organist and harpsichordist Benjamin Alard, to structure their programme around Bach arias featuring obbligato organ and traverso. This album marks the birth of the ensemble founded by Reinoud Van Mechelen, A Nocte Temporis, and the start of his collaboration with Alpha, which will extend over several years.