This time traditionally of contemplation inspires some of the most uplifting music in the choral repertoire, and many of the great Lenten works will be performed between Palm Sunday and Holy Saturday, ready for the great Easter celebration.
Among the works in the 20-event festival are the St John Passion of JS Bach (14 April), when soloists include Iestyn Davies (counter-tenor), Nicholas Pritchard (Evangelist), Gwilym Bowen (tenor) and Ashley Riches (bass). Stephen Layton conducts the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment and the choir Polyphony.
Resident choir for the festival is Tenebrae, conducted by Nigel Short, whose programme of Bach with Aurora Orchestra (12 April) concludes with the very moving Fauré Requiem.
Other highlights are a Come and Sing Messiah (13 April), a chance for amateur singers to sing Handel's great oratorio from scratch, after only two rehearsals on the day, and Choral Music for Palm Sunday (9 April), when the BBC Singers perform music from the 16th century to the present day, broadcast live on Radio 3.
There are also lunchtime and candle-lit late night events.
|What||Holy Week Festival, St John's Smith Square|
|Where||St John's Smith Square, 30 Smith Square, London , SW1P 3HF | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Westminster (underground)|
09 Apr 17 – 15 Apr 17, times vary, 20 events
|Price||£0 - £55|
|Website||Click here for more information and booking|