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The KPAC Blog features classical music news, reviews, and analysis from South Texas and around the world. To listen to KPAC 88.3 FM, simply open the player in the gray ribbon at the top of this page and choose KPAC: Classical Music.

The Good Friday 5: Musical Passion Stories You Must Hear

This 1653 engraving by Rembrandt inspired composer Frank Martin to write his oratorio <em>Golgotha </em>in 1945.
This 1653 engraving by Rembrandt inspired composer Frank Martin to write his oratorio <em>Golgotha </em>in 1945.

For Christians around the world, this week, leading up to Easter Sunday, is one of the most meaningful in the religious calendar. The dramatic story of Jesus' final days, as related in the four Gospels of the New Testament, has been meaningful for composers, too, and a rich source for many musical settings of the Passion story. J.S. Bach is still the benchmark when it comes to composing Passions. His St. John Passion and especially St. Matthew Passion continue to loom large over any composer attempting to tell the tale. For the Holy Week, we've picked a few of our favorite musical Passions — four from the 20th and 21st centuries sit alongside Bach's monumental St. Matthew.

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