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Comprising some of Bach's most beautiful works for alto, this is essentially a posthumous overview - and exhibition - of certain aspects of Bach's creative life.Two arias (Buss und Reu and Erbarme Dich) are drawn from the Matthew Passion, two (Wo zwei und drei versammlet sind and Zum reinen Wasser) from Eastertide cantatas and the Agnus Dei is from his most spectacular choral work: the B minor mass.

Bach reserved some of the most life-changing music he wrote for the alto voice, possibly inspired to greater heights by his wife Anna Magdalena, who was herself an accomplished alto. With the majority of Bach alto arias performed and recorded by men it is refreshing to hear Catherine King's rich alto bring new colours to these works.

The NBO is directed alternately by Julian Podger and harpsichordist Ketil Haugsand, the distinguished pupil of Gustav Leonhardt.