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Bach, the Universe and Everything: Astronomy and Poetry

For centuries our journeys have been guided by the stars and poets have written about the night sky as a metaphor for humanity's aspiration.
London, Kings Place £19.50 + booking fee Book Now



ZACHOW Es ist das Heil uns kommen her
TALLIS Nunc Dimittis from Dorian Service
JS BACH Mein Gott, wie lang, ach lange (BWV 155)
FUX Sonata in D minor (K342)

Jocelyn Bell Burnell guest speaker

Bach’s Mein Gott, wie lang, ach lange (BWV 155) is an enigmatic cantata for the season following Epiphany that seeks hope in a dark world. We pursue that theme in Jocelyn Bell Burnell’s talk exploring the poetic beauty we can find in the vastness of the universe, accompanied by readings of several poems.

Jocelyn Bell Burnell is currently Visiting Professor of Astrophysics at the University of Oxford and recipient of the 2021 Copley Medal. Her discovery of pulsar stars in 1967 changed the course of astrophysics.


Bach, the Universe and Everything is a concert series with a difference. Guided by the work of JS Bach, composer and intergalactic genius, our mission is to explore the human desire to better understand our place in the cosmos through his 200 cantatas.

Each concert is built around a Bach cantata and a talk from a guest speaker, alongside choral and instrumental music by other baroque and renaissance composers. The concert lasts approximately one hour.

In 2022-23 we look to the stars as six eminent scientists, writers and broadcasters explore why humans started looking beyond our planet in the first place, space exploration and what lessons we can learn for life on Earth from future discoveries.




"He was wrong to think he could now forget that the big, hard, oily, dirty, rainbow-hung Earth on which he lived was a microscopic dot on a microscopic dot lost in the unimaginable infinity of the Universe."
Douglas Adams: The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy