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Composing three centuries apart, Johann Sebastian Bach and Arvo Pärt’s timeless music speaks to the human soul. From rockstars and writers to artists and filmmakers, these composers are revered by music lovers across genres and generations. The last time the ACO performed their music together, it was a sell-out. 

Richard Tognetti directs this mesmerising collaboration between the ACO and Sydney Dance Company that brings together music, movement and evocative lighting to create something truly extraordinary.

Expressing the luminous longing at the heart of this music is choreography from Rafael Bonachela, Artistic Director Sydney Dance Company, while Gramophone Award-winning countertenor Iestyn Davies, whose performances have been described as “a pleasure that verges on the sublime” (The Guardian) makes his Australian debut, bringing these stirring melodies to life.

Bach and Pärt’s music is rooted in human experience while reaching towards the divine. This program traces a profound journey through three Gardens at the heart of the Biblical narrative they both hold so close: from the hope and temptation of the Garden of Eden to the tragedy and passion of the Garden of Gethsemane, ascending into the Garden of Heaven and, at last, the meditation of silence. Featuring Part’s Fratres and selections from Bach’s most loved cantatas, orchestral and solo music, this promises to be a season highlight and a deeply affirming experience.

  • Prelude

    Johann Sebastian Bach 
    Kanon zu acht Stimmen, BWV1072
    Arvo Pärt 
    Collage über B-A-C-H: I. Toccata

    Garden of Eden

    Bach
    Cantata “Wiederstehe doch des Sunde”, BWV54: Aria “Wer Sünde tut, der ist vom Teufel”
    Bach
    Sonata for Violin and Keyboard in A major: I. Dolce
    Bach
    Cantata “Ich bin ein guter Hirt”, BWV85: Aria “Jesus ist ein guter Hirt”
    Pärt 
    Fratres

    Garden of Gethsemane

    Bach
    Sonata for Solo Violin No.2 in A minor: III. Andante
    Bach
    St Matthew Passion: “Erbarme Dich”
    Pärt 
    Für Lennart in memoriam
    Pärt 
    My Heart’s in the Highlands

    Garden of Heaven

    Bach
    Cantata “Der Herr denket an uns”, BWV196: Sinfonia
    Pärt 
    Vater unser
    Bach
    Cello Suite No.3 in C major: I. Prelude
    Bach
    Magnificat: “Et exultavit”

    Into Silence

    Pärt 
    Pari intervallo
    Bach
    The Art of Fugue: Fuga a 3 Soggetti (unfinished)
    Paul Hindemith
    Trauermusik: IV. Sehr langsam

  • Richard Tognetti 
    Director & Violin
    Iestyn Davies 
    Countertenor
    Rafael Bonachela
    Choreographer & Artistic Director, Sydney Dance Company
    Stefanie Farrands
    Viola
    Timo-Veikko Valve 
    Cello
    Chad Kelly
    Organ & Harpsichord
    Artists from Sydney Dance Company
    Australian Chamber Orchestra