Concert fetes anniversary of Mendelssohn

As this year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of early-Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn, Musica Poetica, led by Yumiko Tanno, an expert on German Protestant music, is staging a concert on March 27 titled “The Evening of Passion Music” at Tokyo Cathedral.

The concert will feature two pieces by Mendelssohn — “Vespergesang” and “Der 22. Psalm: Mein Gott, Mein Gott, Warum has du mich verlassen?” — and a piece composed by Arvo Part in 1982, “Passio Domini Nostri Jesu Christi secundum Joannem” (“Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to John”).

The Heinrich Schutz Chor, Tokyo, and the Mendelssohn Chor will sing for the Mendelssohn pieces, and the former group will sing for Part’s piece. Other singers and musicians will also take part.

Mendelssohn’s anniversary will also be celebrated later in the month at a number of venues throughout the capital.

On April 12, musicians led by Tanno and his son Taro will present Easter music free of charge from 6 p.m. at the Hongo Church of Nihon Kirisuto Kyodan ([03] 3399-2730) in Suginami Ward, when Mendelssohn’s “Surrexit pastor bonus” and Schutz’s “Historia der Auferstehung Jesu Christi” will be performed.

Classical fans may also be interested in a performance in Musashino on April 17, in which pieces by Franz Schubert and Johannes Brahms will be performed. The Schubert pieces are: “Der Hirt auf dem Felsen” (soprano, clarinet and piano), “Ganymed” and “Nacht and Traume” (baritone and piano), “Der Wanderer,” “Musensohn” and “Nachtstueck” (tenor and piano). The Brahms pieces are: “Sonate, op.120-1″ (clarinet and piano), “Liebeslider, op. 52″ (18 songs, soprano, alto, tenor, baritone and piano).

“The Evening of Passion Music” is at Tokyo Cathedral in Sekiguchi, Bunkyo Ward, from 7 p.m. on March 27. Tickets are ¥5,000 and ¥4,000 (students ¥2,500). For details, call 042-394-0543. “Musica Poetica’s Special Concert featuring Schubert and Brahms” is from 7 p.m. on April 17 at Musashino Shimin Bunka Kaikan Sho Hall (3-9-11 Nakamachi, Musashino). Tickets are Y4,000 (students Y2,500). For details, call or fax 042-394-0543.