Orchestra's 'St. Matthew Passion' falls short of sublime
How could such great music have been absent from the Philadelphia Orchestra for so long? The answer was clear by the end of Thursday's sold-out, three-hour-plus St. Matthew Passion, the first performance of the work by the orchestra in 28 years: For all the effort required to perform J.S. Bach's masterpiece, the sublime may always be in view but never consistently achieved.