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Programme Notes and Prefaces

  • Bach St Matthew Passion - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 200 kB
    “The first translation of the St. Matthew Passion: Helen Johnston’s lasting legacy”
    A talk given by Neil Jenkins on the 150th anniversary of the work’s 1st performance in England.
  • Preparing a New English Edition of Bach's St. Matthew Passion

    PDF File 90 kB
    Program notes on Neil's new English translation of this work.
  • Bach St Matthew Passion - A Preface

    PDF File 120 kB
    with more information on Neil's new English translation of this work.
  • Bach St John Passion - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 50 kB
    The first person to translate a Bach Passion into English was Helen Johnston (1813-1887), who produced a St. Matthew Passion text for Sir William Sterndale Bennett's 1862 edition....
  • Bach Christmas Oratorio - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 170 kB
    Although Bach's Christmas Oratorio (1734) has been as popular a work for choirs and choral societies to perform as his two Passions, it has striven against Handel's Messiah as the obvious work to choose for a Christmas performance....
  • Bach Easter Oratorio - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 100 kB
    Bach composed many pieces of celebratory music during his time in Leipzig. As these were only destined to receive one performance it is not surprising to find movements from them reappearing in the church cantatas which he had to provide each week...
  • Bach Ascension Oratorio - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 120 kB
    During the 1730s Bach set about preparing a library of music to meet all the needs of the Church year at the Leipzig churches for which he provided the music....
  • Bach Magnificat in D - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 120 kB
    Bach's D major Magnificat has long been known as one of his finest short choral works and is frequently performed on festive occasions....
  • Bach Magnificat in E flat - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 60 kB
    Bach's D major Magnificat has long been known as one of his finest short choral works and is frequently performed on festive occasions. His earlier version of the work, in the key of E flat major, is no mere transposition and deserves to be better known....
  • Bach B Minor Mass (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 130 kB
    A talk given at the premiere of this edition on the origin of the mass. Bach’s B Minor Mass seems to have been written with no discernible purpose in mind. It springs from a Lutheran rather than a Catholic tradition...
  • Bach B Minor Mass Preface

    PDF File 330 kB
    Scholars have debated endlessly over Bach’s reasons for compiling the Mass in B minor.
  • Schütz The Christmas Story - (Novello edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 80 kB
    Schütz composed this work towards the end of a long and full life, during which he brought the musical style of Giovanni Gabrieli and other influential Italian composers northwards to the Protestant Courts of Kassel, Dresden and Copenhagen....
  • Haydn The Creation (King’s Music edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 140 kB
    Programme Note on preparing a new English text for The Creation.
  • Text of Haydn The Creation

    PDF File 90 kB
    in a new translation by Neil Jenkins.
  • Haydn The Seasons - (King’s Music edition ed. N. Jenkins)

    PDF File 110 kB
    Haydn’s last great choral work deserves to be better known in this country, but has been badly served by its English translators from the very beginning.
  • Text of Haydn The Seasons

    PDF File 145 kB
    in a new translation by Neil Jenkins.
Neil has written programme notes and prefaces for works by Bach, Haydn and Schütz. They are all Adobe Acrobat (PDF) files and the file size for each is shown. Please select the file(s) you require either by selecting in the normal way and then saving the file, or by right-clicking the file link and selecting 'Save Link As..'.