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Cantata BWV 145
Ich lebe, mein Herze, zu deinem Ergötzen
Discussions - Part 2

Continue from Part 1

Discussions in the Week of June 15, 2008

Uri Golomb wrote (June 15, 2008):
Cantata BWV 145: Ich lebe, mein Herze

Ich lebe, mein Herze is, apparently, one of Bach's shorter cantatas. I say "apparently" since its transmission is problematic. The work might have been composed for performance on April 19, 1729 (that's the dating suggested by Alfred Dürr), but no sources from Bach's lifetime survive. The 19th-century copy opens with two movements not usually performed today: a chorale harmonisation by Bach, and a chorus by Telemann. It is not clear whether the link between these two movements and the rest of the cantata has anything to do with Bach. (Bach did perform works by Telemann in Leipzig; but AFAIK he never mixed Telemann movements with his own in a single sequence). In any case, Picander's libretto, which survives separately, includes only those movements that are usually performed today, starting with the opening soprano-tenor duet (Mvt. 1).

This duet (Mvt. 1) is also somewhat unusual: Bach composed several duets for Jesus and the Soul, but in all the others, Jesus is represented by a bass, rather than a tenor. Dürr and the OCC both conjecture that this unusual feature might indicate that the music originated from a secular cantata, though, as Dürr puts it, this is "a conjecture that can neither be confirmed nor refuted". A similar source is conjectured for the more sumptuous bass aria (Mvt. 3) (the duet (Mvt. 1) is accompanied only by violin and continuo, the bass by a full orchestra of trumpet, flute, oboe d'amore, strings (without viola) and continuo.

Personally, it wouldn't surprise me if Bach did intend to open this work with a chorus -- by himself, not by Telemann -- that somehow got lost; the duet (Mvt. 1) strikes me as more typical and fitting for a second movement than as an opening. But this is even more of a conjecture than the secular-origin hypothesis, relying on little more than personal musical intuition. Gardiner [4], in the notes to his recordings (which unfortunately I don't own yet -- but the notes are available online) speaks of an "exuberance and uncomplicated delight in music-making" as the main characteristics of this work, which seems to me an apt characterisation. It is a charming, highly enjoyable work -- but, if I may say so, not one of Bach's most profound creations...

On the previous round (http://www.bach-cantatas.com/BWV145-D.htm ), this cantata did not seem to attract much attention. Hopefully this time there will be a more active discussion.

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 15, 2008):
BWV 145 introduction

Uri Golomb wrote:
>Hopefully this time there will be a more active discussion.<
And Doug immmediately responded, without a trace of <malaise>. Nothing more enjoyable than a bit of wit, mixed with generosity of spirit.

Neil Halliday wrote (June 15, 2008):
List thoughts; and BWV 145

James Atkins Pritchard wrote:
>When you hear a Bach cantata in the context of a church service is the experience the same as hearing it in a concert?<
The answer will differ if one is a believer or not, but the experience of joy (or grief) is potentially available to any human being at any time and place.

In other words, the "throw my hat in the air and dance" type of joy that the bass aria (Mvt. 3) of this week's cantata BWV 145 may engender in its listeners (aided and abetted by an outrageously long trill on a single note on the trumpet) is surely as equally valid outside a church as in it.

On the more mundane matter of recording quality, I experience the acoustic in the Rilling recording [1] of this aria as somehow lacking in richness/liveliness, on my sound system at least, something I have experienced before with some of Rilling's late recordings (c. 1984, in his complete set).

William Hoffman wrote (June 16, 2008):
Cantata BWV 145: A Box of Pandoras

William Hoffman responds:

This is one of Bach's most historically intriguing cantatas. It's more than just a joyful, lively, brief piece for Easter Tuesday. It bears three possible titles, or incipits. That's because it's an apparent cut-and-paste job as well as a partial parody -- two characteristics of Bach's fragmentary, so-called "Picander Fourth Cantata Cycle" of 1728-29, as we now find the remnants.

Like most of the other nine surviving Picander Cycle "complete" cantatas, its provenance is cloudy. I trust Thomas Braatz will have some enlightening remarks, especially regarding Wilhelm Friedemann's inheritance and possible (mis)use of this work, which wound up in its present form in Zelter's Berlin Singakademie archives in the mid-19th century in a score which later was owned by singer and collector Franz Hauser and published in the Bach Gesellschaft in 1884.

Service Background: During Bach's first years in Leipzig when he was composing his church year cantata cycles, he was hard-pressed to deliver newly-written works for the Mondays and Tuesdays following the celebration of the feasts of Easter and Pentecost Sundays. In his first cycle in 1724 he salvaged manuscripts from Köthen secular celebratory works and parodied them with new texts, sometimes including the recitatives, for these weekday services. In 1725, he abandoned the chorale cantata cycle at Easter, instead presenting the Easter Oratorio (BWV 249) on Sunday, then on Easter Monday presenting Cantata BWV 6 with two parodied movements, and on Easter Tuesday possibly presenting Easter Sunday old favorite chorale Cantata BWV 4, "Christ lag in Todesbanden," and a version of Weimar Cantata BWV 158, "Der Friede sei mit dir." For the third cycle, Bach on Easter Sunday may have used two Telemann works, motet TVWV 8:15, "Der Herr ist Koenig," and Cantata TVWV 1:877, "Ich weiss, dass mein erloester Lieb," also known as Cantata BWV 160. On Easter Monday and Tuesday, he simply continued using cantatas of his cousin Johann Ludwig.

So Bach in 1729, with Picander's assistance, filled gaps in this previous cycle with "new" works for the Easter Festival, April 17-19. For Easter Sunday, there is no trace of Picander Cantata 28, just text, "Es hat Ueberwunden der Loewe," except for the closing, chorale BWV 278, Stanza 6 of "Christ lag in Todesbanden," but there is a surviving Telemann Easter Cantata, with similar incipit, BWV 219=TVWV 1:1328. For Easter Monday we have a curious fragment, Cantata BWV Anh. 190, "Ich bin ein Pilgrim auf der Welt." It is the last five measures of the bass aria, Movement 4, "When I shall Jesus have," found in the fragmented manuscript of the parodied wedding Cantata BWV 120a, preceeding the Sinfonia borrowed from the famous Preludio to the solo Violin Partita BWV 1006. We will be discussing Cantata BWV 120a, July 13. And for Easter Tuesday, we have this week's discussion, Cantata BWV 145.

Cantata BWV 145. As Whittaker observes (I:660f), the Cantata can bear three titles, from the first three movements in the manuscript: "Auf mein Herz," the opening chorale; the following chorus, "So du mit deinem Munde"; or the succeeding soprano-tenor duet, the first movement in Picander's text, "Ich lebe, mein Herz.

The opening chorale, now labeled as BWV 145a (Mvt. a), is attributed to Bach, and first appeared in CPE Bach Bach's chorale collection of 1784-87, published by Breitkopf in Leipzig. The text, however, is not found in Picander's published cycle (1728).

The second movement in the manuscript, now BWV 145b (Mvt. b) (Neumann Handbuch) also not in Picander's text, "Su du mit deinem Munde,"is a chorus with high trumpet. According to Whittaker (I:661), Spitta doubted its validity and "points out that the manner of working-out is more that of Telemann than of Bach." Smend in Bach in Köthen (1951; 63-65, 1985 ed.) accepted this as a Bach chorus, pointing out its similarity two other Köthen opening choruses, Cantatas 66a and 134a, which also begin with extended vocal duets, followed by the chorus. It was later shown to be the opening chorus in a Telemann Cantata, TVWV 1:1350, published in 1723. Interestingly, the score and parts copy for this Telemann cantata were in the possession of Christian Gottlob Meißner, Bach student and Main Copyist B, 1723-1729 (OCC 292).

I also found a note that in lieu of these two appendages, Bach may have begun Cantata BWV 145 originally with the sinfonia Allegro to the second Brandenburg Concerto, BWV 1047, a similar practice in other late Bach cantatas, for the possible benefit of Wilhelm Friedemann at the keyboard. (Maybe that's why Dad left him those nine Picander cantatas.)

So what is left of Cantata BWV 145, lasting some 10 minutes, are two arias, two recitatives, and the closing chorale, all in Picander's text. Smend is the original authority for the acceptance of the two arias as parodies from Köthen. Boyd in OCC (234) points out the parody relationship in the (now) opening Jesus-Soul duet (Mvt. 1) and the Köthen characteristics in the bass aria (Mvt. 3), "with its dance-like (passepied) character, ample ritornellos, and high tessitura." Unfortunately, Smend was unable to find the original Köthen text.

The Picander text suggests that there was close collaboration with Bach, since the poetry cycle was published some 10 months before the work could have been performed. Obviously, Bach, the Borrower, supplied Picander with scores or written texts to existing cantata and Passion movements, as he had done throughout the previous four years and would continue for at least the next decade.

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 16, 2008):
Is there an inside joke I am missing? My Dads Day gift was a Pandoras Box, twelve cute beers.

On the Fugitive Front, I note enough references in William Hoffman's post, to keep us scrambling for the week. Thanks for that. A couple quick responses:

WH:
>Service Background: During Bach's first years in Leipzig when he was composing his church year cantata cycles, he was hard-pressed to deliver newly-written works for the Mondays and Tuesdays following the celebration of the feasts of Easter and Pentecost Sundays. In his first cycle in 1724 he salvaged manuscripts from Köthen secular celebratory works and parodied them with new texts, sometimes including the recitatives, for these weekday services.<
EM:
There is extensive discussion in the BCW archives, revolving around the fact that Bach published the cantata texts in booklet form, well in advance of performance. It is essential to reconcile the existence of the texts, well in advance, with the idea of <hard pressed to deliver newly written works.> Perhaps the idea of Bach the Borrower, the master of <cut-and -paste>, from the very beginning in Leipzig, is worth consideration? I would look for a more positive phrase than <he salvaged manuscripts>, perhaps along the lines of <he remembered and expanded on favorite themes>.

WH:
>In 1725, he abandoned the chorale cantata cycle at Easter, instead presenting the Easter Oratorio on Sunday, then on Easter Monday presenting Cantata BWV 6 with two parodied movements, and on Easter Tuesday possibly presenting Easter Sunday old favorite chorale Cantata BWV 4, "Christ lag in Todesbanden," and a version of Weimar Cantata BWV 158, "Der Friede sei mit dir."<
EM:
Another side of the coin, also with extenisve discussion in the BCW archives: it is not so easy to dismiss the <Stubel hypothesis>, that is, that Bach did not exactly abandon the Chorale Cantats cycle. Rather, he ran out of texts due to a death, and made an accomodation. When we also consider the necessity (?) to coordinate cantata and sermon, as well as publishing texts in advance, the idea of any music composition without extensive advance planning is difficult for the average guy (me) to grasp without some very convincing evidence.

BWV 145 is off to a roaring start! I might conclude that Jims, er, Julians stimulus has taken early effect? Or I might wait a few weeks to make up my mind.

BCW, better than a book.

Douglas Cowling wrote (June 16, 2008):
Ed Myskowski wrote:
< There is extensive discussion in the BCW archives, revolving around the fact that Bach published the cantata texts in booklet form, well in advance of performance. It is essential to reconcile the existence of the texts, well in advance, with the idea of <hard pressed to deliver newly written works.> Perhaps the idea of Bach the Borrower, the master of <cut-and -paste>, from the very beginning in Leipzig, is worth consideration? I would look for a more positive phrase than <he salvaged manuscripts>, perhaps along the lines of <he remembered and expanded on favorite themes>. >
Well put. Bach was the consummate Well-Regulated Composer -- is there any evidence that he was a frantic composer, desperately trying to meet his deadlines? If he was, we would see sloppy scores and parts and literal cut-and-paste jobs. Bach would have been a poor Lutheran cantor if he didn;t anticipate and plan for the three days of Christmas and the three days of Easter. I think we still have remnants of the Romantic distaste for parody and reuse of music. For Bach, that was business as usual and part of his infinitley complex compostiional process.

All of Bach's training and experience tells us that he looked out over the coming year (years?) and saw a well-regulated schema of original works, revised works, parodied works, pastiche works and works by other composers. The scope of his creative planning and his ability ot work simultaneously on several works rivals Mozart's more securely-documented genius. Now we just have to discover a truckload of doto tell us how he did it.

Neil Halliday wrote (June 17, 2008):
BWV 145 bass aria (Mvt. 3): trills

I notice Rilling [1] alone has trills on the long-held flute notes (4 and 3 bars long respectively) in the ritornello, and trumpet note (5 bars long) after the bass's first melisma on "beständig". Though not indicated in the BGA, these trills are quite enlivening and in keeping with the aria's intended affect.

http://www.bach-cantatas.com/BWV145.htm
[You can hear the trumpet trill in the amazon Rilling sample [1]].

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 17, 2008):
BWV 145

Uri Golomb wrote:
>Personally, it wouldn't surprise me if Bach did intend to open this work with a chorus -- by himself, not by Telemann -- that somehow got lost; the duet strikes me as more typical and fitting for a second movement than as an opening.<
Will wrote:
>I also found a note that in lieu of these two appendages, Bach may have begun Cantata BWV 145 originally with the sinfonia Allegro to the second Brandenburg Concerto, BWV 1047, a similar practice in other late Bach cantatas,<
EM:
We have moved from BWV 159, Sunday before Lent, 1729, which opens with a duet for alto and bass. Skipped across a major SMP (BWV 244) performance, then Easter Sunday and Monday, and landed on another new work, for Easter Tuesday, BWV 145, opening (?) with a duet for soprano and tenor (Mvt. 1).

It is perhaps simple, rather than profound, but what is the problem with this interpretation: Bach moved those two voices up a notch, after the Resurrection, creating a lovely, parallel, frame for the entire season, with the two new, brief, cantatas (BWV 159 and BWV 145) for 1729.

Bach as sculptor, I call it.

William Hoffman wrote (June 18, 2008):
BWV 145

Ed Myskowski wrote:
> We have moved from BWV 159, Sunday before Lent, 1729, which opens with a duet for alto and bass. Skipped across a major SMP (BWV 244) performance, then Easter Sunday and Monday, and landed on another new work, for Easter Tuesday, BWV 145, opening (?) with a duet for soprano and tenor (Mvt. 1).
It is perhaps simple, rather than profound, but what is the problem with this interpretation: Bach moved those two voices up a notch, after the Resurrection, creating a lovely, parallel, frame for the entire season, with the two new, brief, cantatas (
BWV 159 and BWV 145) for 1729.
Bach as sculptor, I call it. >

William Hoffman responds: Bach as sculptor is an intriguing idea, especially in these "late" cantatas where he is free to take up any form he wishes, including recomposing previous vocal and instrumental music in new contexts. Bach has tried virtually every format imaginable for cantatas: extended sinfonias, what I call "scenas," allegorical figures such as Jesus and the Soul in dialogue, intricate chorale treatment, etc. On a pragmatic note, is
it possible that Bach the Regulator, after the great SMP six-act drama with double (or expanded) forces five days previous, gives his musicians a well-deserved break?

The source of my note about an opening sinfonia comes from the Rilling CD text to Cantata BWV 145 [1] (1985, Marianne Helms and Arthur Hirsch). "The five Picander movements, with the succession Aria (duet), Recitative, Aria, Recitative, Chorale, create a concise form typical of the 1728/29 cycle; a form which apparently suggested to Bach the composition of concerto-like introductory movements for several of these cantatas (BWV 188, BWV 156, BWV 171). Whether or not this also applies to the authentic form of BWV 145 is impossible to determine due to the loss of all original sources; through the assumption of such an original structure for this work would also help to explain the unusually large instrumentation of the bass aria: trumpet, flute, 2 oboi d'amore, 2 violins (no violas) and continuo. A similar instrumentation appears in the outer movements of the second Brandenburg Concerto. In order to use this instrumentation in the opening movement, a transposition from F to D major would have been necessary, the same transpositional technique which can be observed in the transformation of the final movement of the hunting cantata BWV 208 into the opening movement of the cantata for St. Michael's Day BWV 149, also contained in the Picander cycle.

Transformation by Bach the sculptor? The visual analogy that come to mind for me is from the much later genius, Rodin, especially his treatment of Mahler and Mozart as well as some of the figures in his historical montages, like the Burghers of Calais.

Peace, Sweet William

Neil Halliday wrote (June 18, 2008):
BWV 145 duet (Mvt. 1)

Something worth being aware of, in order to fully enjoy this duet: the rhythm at the start (time signature 2/4) may trick the listener into thinking the violin (and continuo) begin on the beat, but they do not.

The simplest indication of the correct rhythm is to count "and one and two" as the music starts, not "one and two and" (as I tended to do at first hearing); the violin in the ritornello then has the high level of rhythmic and melodic interest we have come to expect with Bach, not to mention the rest of the duet (Mvt. 1).

Terejia wrote (June 18, 2008):
Neil Halliday wrote:
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/28414
> Something worth being aware of, in order to fully enjoy this duet (Mvt. 1): the rhythm at the start (time signature 2/4) may trick the listener into thinking the violin (and continuo) begin on the beat, but they do not.<
Thank you for pointing out. Speaking of the rhythm of the duet (Mvt. 1), merisma "Leben" is somewhat reminiscent of Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata (BWV 1079). How to handle 1/32 might be one of the keypoints?

I'm in a D-dur mode right now, by the way.

Neil Halliday wrote (June 19, 2008):
Terejia wrote:
>Speaking of the rhythm of the duet (Mvt. 1), the melisma on "Leben" is somewhat reminiscent of Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata.<
Quite so; you obviously know your Bach, now I must thank you for pointing this out!

In fact this figure is a significant figure in the vocal parts in the 'A' sections (of the ABA form of the duet (Mvt. 1)), moving from tenor to soprano and back.

Knowing this seems to have ameliorated what I perceived to be somewhat strident vibratos in Rilling's vocalists (the recording I have).

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 19, 2008):
>Speaking of the rhythm of the duet [BWV 145/1 (Mvt. 1)], the melisma on "Leben" is somewhat reminiscent of Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata.<
The referenced work for comparison is Musikalisches Opfer (Musical Offering, BWV 1079/2) I will get it out for a listen, and perhaps join the discussion.

Not being picky, just reminding us all that search standards are crucial, if BCW is truly to be better than a book.

Neil Halliday wrote (June 19, 2008):
Ed Myskowski wrote:
>Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata<
Ed, sthat you know what you are looking for, the figure being discussed first appears in the BCW score of the BWV 145 duet (Mvt. 1), in bars 21 and 22, tenor part (with the melisma on "Leben"). You will recognise it straightaway as it appears in the 2nd movement of the trio sonata.

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 19, 2008):
BWV 145 duet (more)

A few minutes ago, I wrote:
>>Speaking of the rhythm of the duet [BWV 145/1 (Mvt. 1)], the melisma on "Leben" is somewhat reminiscent of Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata.<<
>The referenced work for comparison is Musikalisches Opfer (Musical Offering,
BWV 1079/2) I will get it out for a listen, and perhaps join the discussion.<
Life is never quite as simple as I would try to make it. I should have got the record out first. It is a CD, actually, sorry for betraying my age, not to mention the potentially inflammatory language, very close to <recorder>. Leusink labels the opening movements of BWV 1079, Ricercar a 3, Mvt. 1, and Ricercar a 6, Mvt. 2.

Now we get to the Trio section, which Leusink labels Mvts. 3-6. Still not so bad, but then I check the BWV, only to find that that Leusinks Mvts. 3-6 should be Mvts. 3.1 - 3.4.

Worse yet, I started this post on a BCML thread. Yesterday that would have been no problem, but today I am a member of both BCML and BRML. I leave to your imaginations he humor available to one such as me, from the fact that the <R> stands for <Recordings>, very close again, and very non-descriptive of the list. Beyond that, I am totally clueless as to what is proper, to change list and subject, or just forge ahead.

Easy choice, for one such as me. In Leusink, BWV 1079/3, I hear a trill in the first bar. In the BWV incipit, BWV 1079/3.1, I see a trill written. Is this the intended comparison with BWV 145 duet (Mvt. 1), <Leben> melisma? I neither see nor hear a trill at that point. Vibrato for sure (although not written!). Perhaps with some imagination, even a shake, if that is more restrained than a trill. I will have to listen again to decide if the trill (in BWV 1079/3.1, not in BWV 145/1) begins on the upper or lower note.

Simply too rich for words, even for one such as me.

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 19, 2008):
Neil Halliday wrote
>>Mvt 2 of "Musikaliches Opfer" Trio Sonata<<
>Ed, so that you know what you are looking for, the figure being discussed first appears in the BCW score of the BWV 145 duet (
Mvt. 1), in bars 21 and 22, tenor part (with the melisma on "Leben"). You will recognise it straightaway as it appears in the 2nd movement of the trio sonata.<
Aha! I guess that would be BWV 1079/3.2.? I will give it another try, as soon as I stop laughing.

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 19, 2008):
Neil Halliday wrote:
>Ed, so that you know what you are looking for, the figure being discussed first appears in the BCW score of the BWV 145 duet (Mvt. 1), in bars 21 and 22, tenor part (with the melisma on "Leben"). You will recognise it straightaway as it appears in the 2nd movement of the trio sonata.<
Thanks for the pointing out the BCW score. Because of my almost imposssibly cranky computer, I seldom bother, these days. For others who may wish to follow, the Duet is Mvt. 3 in the score, but the first track of BWV 145 on recordings. The trio sonata, 2nd movement, is the fourth track on the Leusink recording, but most correctly BWV 1079/3.2. Hope I got all that right. As Neil says, once you know what you are looking for, you will recognize it straightaway.

Thanks also to Terejia for initially pointing out this comparison, and for sharing her <D-dur mood>, the key of BWV 145 duet (Mvt. 1) (hope I got that right, as well). With uncharacteristic good luck, I omitted her name from previous posts, and had a bit of misdirected fun only at my own expense (I trust).

Leben to all (clearly with melisma, no trill, no shake), and as always,

Jean Laaninen wrote (June 19, 2008):
Ed Myskowski wrote:
< Now we get to the Trio section, which Leusink labels Mvts. 3-6. Still not so bad, but then I check the BWV, only to find that that Leusinks Mvts. 3-6 should be Mvts. 3.1 - 3.4. >
Thanks for explaining this Ed. I thought I was losing my mind when I listened to several different recording here. I was debating as to whether or not it would be possible to own a complete set of anything with all the parts present or not. You leave me wondering. Oh, and not to mention all the parts in the proper (supposed) order.

Peter Smaill wrote (June 19, 2008):
[To Ed Myskowski & Neil Halliday] The melisma on "Leben" in this duet (Mvt. 1) suggests to me a possible view that Bach, so often associated with resignation towards death, is also concerned to?celebrate and emphasise?the image of Life.

The BMM (BWV 232) has a beautiful extended passage at the lifegiving expression, "vivificantem". Furthermore, the sombre BWV 48, "Ich elender mensch" is illuminated by the passage dealing with making the dead live;

"The medial ritornello then confounds all expectations by abruptly modulating to the mediant B major. This passage is nothing less than a musical representation of the resurrection suggested by the words, "Er kann die Töten Lebend machen. " (Stephen A Crist, OCC.)

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 19, 2008):
BWV 145

>William Hoffman responds [to my post]: Bach as sculptor is an intriguing idea, especially in these "late" cantatas where he is free to take up any form he wishes, including recomposing previous vocal and instrumental music in new contexts. Bach has tried virtually every format imaginable for cantatas: extended sinfonias, what I call "scenas," allegorical figures such as Jesus and the Soul in dialogue, intricate chorale treatment, etc. On a pragmatic note, is it possible that Bach the Regulator, after the great SMP (BWV 244) six-act drama with double (or expanded) forces five days previous, gives his musicians a well-deserved break?<
Thanks for taking my whimsical closing comment seriously! I thought for a second or two about choosing <architect>, perhaps a more accurate but less poetic comparison? See below.

As to the pragmatic note, I believe there is evidence in Bachs own words of his human sensitivity. I was especially touched a couple years ago when I first encountered his (unsuccessful!) recommendation for the flautist Wild, his student (1727 document, Bach Reader). As to a cantata performance for Easter Tuesday, he may well have been as concerned with the size of the audience as with the condition of the musicians. Most likely, IMO, SDG was foremost.

Peter Smaill wrote:
>The melisma on "Leben" in this duet (Mvt. 1) suggests to me a possible view that Bach, so often associated with resignation towards death, is also concerned to celebrate and emphasise the image of Life.<
First of all, let me point out and thank Terejia, for first noting this melisma; Neil and I followed up. It is quite a joy to find new participants like Terejia and Will adding new (I nearly wrote <fresh>, easily misunderstood; I am the <fresh> one) thoughts to BCML.

I previously wrote:
>We have moved from BWV 159, Sunday before Lent, 1729, which opens with a duet for alto and bass. Skipped across a major SMP (BWV 244) performance, then Easter Sunday and Monday, and landed on another new work, for Easter Tuesday, BWV 145, opening (?) with a duet (Mvt. 1) for soprano and tenor.
It is perhaps simple, rather than profound, but wis the problem with this interpretation: Bach moved those two voices up a notch, after the Resurrection, creating a lovely, parallel, frame for the entire season, with the two new, brief, cantatas (
BWV 159 and BWV 145) for 1729.<
Although my intent was to emphasize the over-arching sculptural (or arch-itectural) possibilities of Bach's works for Lent through Easter, 1729, I hope it is also clear that I agreed, in advance, with the detail emphasized by Peter.

Peter Smaill wrote (June 21, 2008):
[To Ed Myskowski] Likewise I'm grateful to Terejia and Neil for spotting and discussing the melisma on "Leben".

Adding to the list of Bachian emphasis on this word group ("life", "living", "lifegiving"), there is the opening recitative of BWV 134, "Ein Herz, das seinen Jesum lebend weiss", where "lebend" is stressed by having a high G, pitched above all other words in the incipit. It is also for Easter Tuesday as is BWV 145, a tiny illustration of the merits of considering Cantatas for the same day together.

Aryeh Oron wrote (June 21, 2008):
BWV 145 - Provenance

Thomas Braatz contributed Provenance page for Cantata BWV 145 discussion.
See: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Ref/BWV145-Ref.htm

Ed Myskowski wrote (June 24, 2008):
BWV 145 recordings

I need to use my eMail service when it is intermittently available. So far, electicity and water are reliable 24/7. Cross my fingers (every bit of humor/reference you can possibly imagine is intended!).

From the first round of discussions, I agree that Leusink [3] is the version to return to, especially for the overall texture, including soprano Ruth Holton, as well as violin obbligato, in Mvt. 1. Depending on individual taste, her voice is a reason to favor (or avoid) the entire Leusink set on Brilliant Classics.

Koopman [5] and Gardiner [4] have been released since the earlier reviews, both worthy of mention and attention. IMO, Leusink [3] holds up very well in the comparison, perhaps remaining first choice (if there is such a thing, at this high level of professional performance).

I will likely return to Gardiner [4] most often, for the couplings as much as the specific performance: the other cantatas on the same disc are BWV 134, also for Easter Tuesday, and BWV 6 for Easter Monday. In fact, I put the CD on to listen (bathe, wallow?) as I write. Soprano Angharad Gruffydd Jones (Jonesy?) is as intriguing for her name as for her voice, lovely on both counts. Given the Easter emphasis (disc one has cantatas for Easter Sunday and Monday), this is an easy recommendation, to sample the Gardiner pilgrimage series. Everyone on this list should have at least one.

It is always problematic, for me, to discuss the Koopman series [5]. Because of the couplings and three CD packaging, it is difficult to suggest any particular issue, for a single cantata. Vol. 19, including BWV 145 is a good place to start sampling: there are a variety of sopranos, both alto Bogna Bartosz (a personal favorite) and counter-tenor Michael Chance are included, providing a convenient opportunity for comparison. Again, I think everyone on list should have at leat one Koopman, for enjoyment and comparison (unless you are able to follow Neil H. and the samples, certainly an economic alternative).

I nearly let the week (the previous one, for BWV 145) go by without playing Harnoncourt [2]. The boy soprano, Alan Bergius, is even more *boyish* than Ruth Holton. Is that better? I found that the melisma in the tenor line, on <Leben>, pointed out by Terejia, was most distinct in this recording. I also find that I enjoy the boy soprano more when he is named in the notes, as in the more recent editions of H&L. I submit this as evidence (subjective, for sure) that music is communciation, among humans, who are not anonymous. Onanymoses, perhpas. Discussion invited.

I did not listen to Rilling [1], I do not have the recording, and my access to samples is like my access to eMail, but less predictable. I enjoy the Rilling recordings that I have. Buying one is often the most economic route to a specific cantata (thats how I got mine, early on).

If you asked me, I could write a book. I am thinking, BCW is just as good?

 

Continue on Part 3

Cantata BWV 145: Details & Complete Recordings | Recordings of Individual Movements | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Recordings & Discussions of Cantatas: Cantatas BWV 1-50 | Cantatas BWV 51-100 | Cantatas BWV 101-150 | Cantatas BWV 151-200 | Cantatas BWV 201-224 | Cantatas BWV Anh | Order of Discussion

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Last update: ıSeptember 27, 2011 ı16:41:59