Performed by violinist Zlata and pianist Mari

J S Bach – Erbarme Dich, Mein Gott | St Matthew Passion (violin and piano)

by | Apr 1, 2020 | 42 comments

Play along with Mari and me!

Inspired to play this yourself? Sign up here:

You’ll receive:

  • Violin sheet music with my fingering and bowing notes
  • Sheet music for voice, violin and piano
  • An accompaniment track by Mari and I, where I play the violin solo and YOU can play the melody of this beautiful piece!

I was inspired to play this beautiful violin solo and wanted to record it with pianist Mari. As we worked on it we had the idea to also play the vocal part on the violin.

Pianist Mari on Soundcloud

This aria describes Peter’s lament after having denied knowing Jesus three times. The text is adapted from the Gospel of St Matthew.

Aria – “Erbarme dich mein gott”
from the St Matthew Passion (Matthäus-Passion, BWV 244)
composed by Johann Sebastian Bach

Erbarme dich, mein Gott,
Um meiner Zähren Willen!
Schaue hier, Herz und Auge
Weint vor dir bitterlich.
Erbarme dich, erbarme dich!

English translation:
Have mercy, my God,
for the sake of my tears!
Look here, heart and eyes
weep bitterly before You.
Have mercy, have mercy!

Here’s my recommendation on a full performance of Bach’s St Matthew Passion that you might not have heard:

I love the expressive style of this old recording.

Hi! I'm Zlata

Classical violinist helping you overcome technical struggles and play with feeling by improving your bow technique.


  1. Sandra

    I would love to give it a go if I can but am only grade 2 soo I don’t know but thank you anyway

    • Daniella

      Hi Zlata, Yes I try tot play this
      Beautiful music from the old master and I thank you a lot tot
      send me the music and your personal notes which are very important to know how to move the bow. So I have to practice a lot now. Thank you.

  2. John Norton

    Lovely performance Zlata, and Mari is perfect on the piano. Bach always sounds deceptively simple when played so well. But the title should say “violinists” (plural) since there are two of You (especially handy when tending your twins). I know that playing two parts with yourself is very tricky to synchronize and Mari’s piano was a great help for this. Loved seeing two of you with violins as you substituted for the singer, and somehow you managed to stay out of each other’s way. 🙂 Videos like this are especially welcome during this virus isolation time. It brightens attitudes from your warmth and caring, bringing some sunshine to counteract this dismal period. Thank you so much for continuing in this positive direction.

    • Violinist Zlata Brouwer

      Thank you for that compliment, John, haha, yes, the editing was just as challenging as playing this piece, which is a lot trickier than it looks like. Take care!

  3. Patricia Bargh

    Wonderful. Thank you for that. One of my favourite pieces, I had a go at it a few months ago but shall be able to pick up some tips from yours and so shall try again! This is one of my favourite performances of it, which made me want to attempt to play it, here accompanied by cello and organ. Beautiful too!

    • Violinist Zlata Brouwer

      Thanks for sharing that beautiful performance, Patricia, take care! I love this piece on cello… even the Hauser version is a dirty pleasure for me, haha!

  4. Annick

    Dear Zlata and Mari,

    Who does not love J S Bach? His music and his words are touching our souls.

    Thanks for the very nice preformance. Awesome.

    • Sara

      Wonderful performance, such a beautiful playing! I love Bach! And I have watched this video almost exactly one year after and on Sunday we celebrate Easter! Easter blessings to you and thank you so much for sharing, Zlata!

  5. Dixon Withers-Julian

    Very lovely Zlata and Mari!! We hope all will be well with you and your families. Thanks for this special music and the translation of the text.

  6. Yael Sauzedde

    Lovely piece, thank you for sharing.
    Very peaceful and so beautifully played.
    Sounds great, I really enjoyed listening to this even though I’m mostly a fan of Bluegrass music.

  7. daniella stoop

    zalige muziek

  8. Ky Xuan To

    We are locked here in Quebec by the virus; it’s really recomforting to hear to hear your music. Thank you very much

  9. Dick

    Beautiful music and I like the way you play it.

  10. Ben

    Prachtig Zlata, Mari en Bach. Bedankt!

  11. Ellie

    Ik was very glad with the sheetmusic of Erbarme dich. Finally I can
    > play this beautiful peace of music with my husband on the piano.
    > I will pass your video on to my fellow orchestra members. So a lot of
    > people can hear you playing on the violin. Thanks you so much. All
    > your video’s and comments are highly appreciated.

  12. Molly

    So beautifully played, thank you so much Zlata and Mari for sharing! May God bless you and your music. It brings a lot of joy and peace xxx

  13. Elize Ferguson

    Thanks for sharing. Absolutely beautiful.

  14. Cynthia Broomfield

    Thanks for sharing. It is beautiful -Bach happens to be my top favourite composer from the Baroque era.

  15. Ann Marie

    So beautiful Zlata and Mari! Brings tears to my eyes. What a love gift to all of us during Holy Week.

  16. Eleonore

    Beautiful performance from both of you two (3!) on this white thursday and as a preparation for tomorrow. Thank you so much for getting me touched again by the musical passion story.

  17. Robert Virden

    As we hunker down to combat this nasty virus, it heart warming to hear such beautiful music. Your kind words, and sharing the photos of your family makes this isolation a little more bearable. This piece is just beyond my reach but I am practicing hard. Thank you so much for sharing and keeping our spirits up.

  18. Dixon

    Hi Zlata and Mari, Yes, I have the sheet music but haven’t tried it yet. Since I play cello and my wife plays violin, I plan to play the continuo line on my cello along with you and Mari. Unfortunately my wife isn’t advanced enough to play the music yet. She’s an enthusiastic listener :)) Playing the continuo bass of Bach is one of my favorite things. I will also transcribe the solo part for cello later. Thanks again for your generosity!

  19. Mariagnese

    Beautiful! Full of prayer, inspired and inspiring. To play to pray! Thanks a lot!

    • Zlata

      You’re so welcome!


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