This cello score for the Good Friday passion reading adds one more essential voice to the telling of the story. The cello, in its poignant voice and vernacular, walks the way of the cross with characters and audience, delivering the emotion of journey from tragedy that soon turns to triumph.

The music

The cello is a natural fit for the emotions of the story as is the minor key – a key of lament. Each main character has their own theme and later, when Jesus dies and all kneel, the cello develops Jesus’ theme more fully and weaves in the other character’s themes (except for Judas’) evoking their own perspective on his death. Of note is that Mary’s theme is derived from the Stabat Mater Dolorosa – a 13th century song about Mary’s experience of the passion. Besides the character themes, various dramatic moments are punctuated and the epilogue is undergirded with the mood and harmonic outlines of Jesus’ theme.

Passion Reading recording: