Festival 2022

The Mathematical Genius of Bach: Goldberg Variations with the City of London Sinfonia

30th June 7.30pm (2022)

Christ Church Spitalfields

Bach’s music is mathematically perfect.  Discuss.

PRICE: £10-£25

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The Spitalfields Mathematical Society was a club for working men which met in taverns around Christ Church from 1717 to give “the public at large an opportunity of increasing their knowledge, on terms so easy, as to be within the reach of every individual, who has a taste to cultivate, or curiosity to gratify.” It thrived for over a century before merging into the Royal Astronomical Society in the 1840s, educating “many weavers, and the rest were typically brewers, braziers, bakers, bricklayers”.

Although the professions of our local community have since changed, we’re all about educating and inspiring so are drawing on this ethos to present Professor James Sparks from the University of Oxford talking about the mathematical genius of Bach, illustrated through a performance of the Goldberg Variations, with accompanying interactive maths puzzles for the audience.

Alexandra Wood        Director/Violin

James Sparks            Presenter and Mathematician

City of London Sinfonia

RUNNING TIME:  90 minutes with no interval

Download the programme here


NB: Christ Church Spitalfields is organised over two main floors: Nave and Gallery. On the booking page, ‘Ground floor’ indicates a seat in the nave; ‘first floor’ indicates a seat in the Gallery with good sightlines; and ‘second floor’ indicates a restricted view seat in the Gallery.  All sections are unreserved, so seats will be allocated according to availability within your section when you arrive at the performance.

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Venue information

Christ Church Spitalfields

Commercial Street
E1 6LY
United Kingdom

Underground & National Rail

Liverpool Street (Bishopsgate exit, 5 mins)
Aldgate East (Commercial Street exit, 5 mins)
Walking times are given in brackets.


All of our venues are easy to reach by buses. To plan your quickest route use TFL’s journey planner.


All tickets across the festival priced at £15.
Disabled and limited mobility: Free companion ticket. Call us to book.


Wheelchair access is available at most venues.
If you have specific access requirements, then please email
ku.gro.cisumsdleiflatips@eciffoxob or phone 07311 622393.