DAMIJAN MOČNIK (b.1967) : JOHANNESPASSION "Passio Domini nostri Iesu Christi secundum Ioannem" for Soli, Choir, Organ and Orchestra. Soloists ; Max Hanft, organ; SLOWENISCHER PHILHARMONISCHER CHOIr GREGOR KLANČIČ Choreinstudierung / chorus master MÜNCHNER RUNDFUNKORCHESTER IVAN REPUŠIĆ Leitung / conductor
Catalogue Number: 05Y033
Label: BR Klassik
Description: For this CD production, Damijan Mocnik has created a reduced version of his "St. John Passion" for woodwind, percussion and strings, originally composed with a considerably larger orchestra. The recording took place on March 5, 2022 in Studio 1 of the Bayerischer Rundfunk. Authenticity of performance is guaranteed not only by the Slovenian Philharmonic Choir but also by the Croatian conductor Ivan Repušic, who as chief conductor of the Münchner Rundfunkorchester energetically promotes contemporary music from the Western Balkans. The time and place chosen for the premiere of Damijan Mocnik's "St. John Passion" – Maundy Thursday 2011 in the largest hall in Ljubljana – make it clear what universal aspirations the work wishes to fulfil for believers and music lovers alike. This also includes the use of the Latin language and the decision to dispense with folkloristic local colour, both of which have undoubtedly enhanced the work’s broader reception. In addition, this "St. John Passion" seeks a connection to much older traditions, such as Gregorian chant, early polyphony and old movement techniques including falsobordone and organum. The composer focuses on the words from St. John’s Gospel that Jesus gives to his disciples at the Last Supper: "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." These words to his listeners turn out to be the decisive message of the Passion story. In Slovenia, the name Damijan Mocnik is associated with a lively and young choral music scene, in which he has made a reputation for himself as a teacher, conductor and composer - for example, with the system of a "choir pyramid", with which, over 25 years, he has been able to inspire more than 1,700 singers to sing together at the traditional St. Stanislaus Diocesan Grammar School in Ljubljana. Mocnik wants to create "a triangle between composer, performer and listener. A composer who also performs his works can have much more authentic contact with his audience.” In general, contact with young people is very important to him; his youth opera from 2018, for example, gained him a lot of attention. In addition, he often composes choral works such as masses, hymns and motets, which have become known far beyond the borders of his homeland. During his musical education, Mocnik also sought contact with the greats of the choral music scene, for example during a study visit with Eric Ericson in Sweden. In his own country, as early as 1995, he gained public attention when he won a composition competition on the occasion of the papal visit of John Paul II, with the choral movement "One thousand years have already passed".