"HEAVENLY KING, BE WELCOME" is as it were the heading and the credo for the traditional choral concert at Palmarum at the beginning of Holy Week on Palm Sunday. The Kurt Thomas Chamber Choir under the artistic direction of Epiphany Cantor Andreas Köhs performs thematically appropriate choral works by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) with the renowned vocal soloists Julia Diefenbach (alto), Christian Rathgeber (tenor) and Johannes Hill (bass) as well as instrumentalists of the Telemann Ensemble Frankfurt.
At the beginning, the cantata "Himmelskönig, sei willkommen," BWV 182, composed by J. S. Bach for Palm Sunday, can be heard in the early Weimar version. The cantata, with full-voice choruses, was first performed in Weimar for Palm Sunday in 1714 and thematizes the entry of Jesus as king into Jerusalem and, at the same time, into the hearts of Christendom. Especially in the jubilant entrance chorus fugue in the style of a French overture and likewise the final chorus, the joyful devotion to the "King of Heaven" is embodied.
The following "Missa in G minor," BWV 235, is a true gem of Bach's vocal music and belongs to a group of Lutheran masses (Kleine Messen) based on so-called parody models. In this way, Bach used the method of parody, which had been widespread since the Renaissance, to subordinate the universal Latin texts of the mass to older German cantata movements of particular compositional value by reworking them as new texts, thus making them timelessly performable as mass settings.