This programme features highlights of German Romanticism and one of the most familiar and frequently performed composers: Johannes Brahms. More particularly, Brahms’s choral music ‘in all its pureness’, the genre that made him so well-known and well-loved among the countless choirs of the time in Germany and Austria. Four years before Brahms was born in Hamburg, Felix Mendelssohn dusted off Bach’s St Matthew Passion and had it performed again, a hundred years after the premiere in 1729. Brahms likewise cherished the remembrance of Bach. In Vienna he performed his motets and throughout Brahms’s life, Bach remained his primary source of inspiration.
With its 32 professional singers, the Swedish Radio Choir forms an instrument with a range from the most delicate a cappella tones to oratorios of enormous power and versatility. Every individual is allowed his or her place in the group, resulting in an exclusive expressiveness – the Swedish Radio Choir’s unique sound. The Swedish Radio Choir, which is one of the world’s most respected a cappella ensembles, was founded in 1925, but it was not until 25 years later (1952), under the leadership of their new principal conductor Eric Ericson, that the choir began to develop into the flexible instrument that it has now become.
And every principal conductor after him has also contributed to the character of the choir, adding new colour and accomplishments. The present principal conductor, since the autumn of 2007, is Peter Dijkstra.