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Cantata BWV 191
Gloria in excelsis Deo
Discussions - Part 2

Continue from Part 1

Discussions in the Week of December 21, 2008

Terejia wrote (December 21, 2008):
Introduction to Cantata BWV 191 Gloria in excelsis Deo

The cantata to be discussed this week is BWV 191.

Instruments
Strings, 2 oboes, 2 flutes, 3 trampets and timpani.

Previous discussions: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/BWV191-D.htm
commentar: http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/works/bachjs/cantatas/191.php

Also, pre-introduction by Jean (humorously :-))
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29537

Good experience, Jean, I really envy you. Boys' voices are really special to me. Probably less trained, less refined than female voices but somehow it gives an rarefied atomosphere to me. Not necessarily that one is better than the other, simply different.

What I personally find interesting is B-minor mass (BWV 232) comes EARLIER to this cantata in chronological order.

As is usuall the case with Bach, here he seems to exihibit his tireless endeavor in exploring musical/aesthetic perfection, IMHO, maybe mathematical perfection as well.

Mvt. 1: begins gloriously with tutti of 3 trampets, strings, 2 oboes and 2 flauto traversos and 5 voices of choir with triplet rhythms in D-dur key. String arpeggio might sounds a bit too simple, if taken independently of the whole "context"-or score. The latter part, following the hemiola conclusion of the first part, is more sober contrapunct of 4/4 rhythm and splendidly sounding brass and timpani are told to be tacit for a while until last climax. In my personal humble opinion, it might be interesting and rather paradoxical that Koopman's [6] HIP occasionally sounds "very modernly" in such a movement.

As to the latter half, I imagine it may well be a bit pity for those singing second soprano part that they have no merisma allotted to them, yes, I mean that beautiful merisma which are allotted to all the other four voices.

Mvt. 2 G dur duet of tenor and soprano with strings and flute traverse obligato. The difference from corresponding duet from B-minor mass (BWV 232) would be that the latter has additional minor key sections added to it heading toward mysteriously sounding 4 voices of chorus devoid of 1st soprano in b-minor key. On the other hand, in BWV 191 it is followed by the chorus with utterly different tones from 'qui tolis peccata mundi'.

Recordings I have available are Rilling [2] and Koopman [6] and as far as Mvt. 2 concerns, I prefer Koopman. Rilling sounds too mellow to my personal ears.

Mvt. 3 the magnificient and glorious tutti of the opening chorus is back again with 5 voices of choir in D-dur key.

About Mvt 1st choir and Mvt 2nd duet, so far I fail to notice any distinct musical difference from corresponding choir and duet respectively from mass in B minor (BWV 232) (although there ARE differences when we listen to into the details).

However, when it comes to Mvt. 3 choir, I find some distinct differencec from 'cum sancto spiritu' in B-minor mass (BWV 232) at the very beginning. In terms of harmony, both are almost identical but the melody is different. In the latter example, i.e, in B-minor mass (BWV 232), it feels more lively, while in BWV 191, it sounds more relentlessly stern and diciplined at least to my personal ears.

Although I still have to explore deeper into the definition of the word "aethetics", this is how I have used the word so far :

By aethetics, I meant the combination of harmony, melody, overall colour or tone by combining and selecting instruments and/or voices, rhythm and tempo to divide time, mass (physics term, although I am by no means a physics specialist) elements like OVPP or MVPP-BWV 191 has heavier mass than BWV 200 in that it adds more instruments, not only in number but addition of timpani and trumpet itself implies heavier mass, at least to me, plus some intangible elements-something like an atomosphere or vibration, or the sorts. Boys' choir or female adult choir might fall into "intangible elements" but I am not sure of yet. Mathematics and aethetic may be closely related.

What I personally like about this particular piece is a mathematical structure within glorious and splendid context in D-dur key. I finally graduated from my internship as of 19th December and the joyous atomosphere matches my current mood. I suppose my ex-boss would love the piece, too. Now What do you like about this piece?

Jean Laaninen wrote (December 21, 2008):
Terejia wrote:
< The cantata to be discussed this week is BWV 191.
Instruments
Strings, 2 oboes, 2 flutes, 3 trampets and timpani.
previous discussions:
http://www.bach-cantatas.com/BWV191-D.htm
commentar: http://www.classical.net/music/comp.lst/works/bachjs/cantatas/191.php
Also, pre-introduction by Jean (humorously :-))
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29537
Good experience, Jean, I really envy you. Boys' voices are really special to me. Probably less trained, less refined than female voices but somehow it gives an rarefied atomosphere to me. Not necessarily that one is better than the other, simply different. mathematical perfection as well. >
---In the case of the Phoenix Boys Choir I believe the majority of the touring choir are likely taking private voice lessons, and possibly even the master's level students. Long ago, before I ever moved here I had an idea that growth in the arts in Phoenix was going to be on the rise, and as I've interacted with the community, I've discovered the serious level of work...going down to about the fifth grade that takes place here. This isn't the same level of work as some of the great divas, but the training is along the same trajectory. The younger groups, however, showed that natural level to which you refer. One boy in particular in the younger group could hardly stay still--we were laughing quietly to ourselves watching him as one might one's own child in a Christmas program. Most, however, were highly attentive even amongst the youngest.

< Although I still have to explore deeper into the definition of the word "aethetics", this is how I have used the word so far :
By aethetics, I meant the combination of harmony, melody, overall colour or tone by combining and selecting instruments and/or voices, rhythm and tempo to divide time, mass (physics term, although I am by no means a physics specialist) elements like OVPP or MVPP-BWV 191 has heavier mass than
BWV 200 in that it adds more instruments, not only in number but addition of timpani and trumpet itself implies heavier mass, at least to me, plus some intangible elements-something like an atomosphere or vibration, or the sorts. Boys' choir or female adult choir might fall into " intangible elements" but I am not sure of yet. Mathematics and aethetic may be closely related. >
---Thanks for explaining a bit -- more of an auditory reaction, then on your part, which is the first part of the defintion I posted.

The area of critical thinking encompasses much more, but as long as we define our terms I believe we communicate quite well. I appreciate it too that you are going to look further into this area.

< What I personally like about this particular piece is a mathemastructure within glorious and splendid context in D-dur key. I finally graduated from my internship as of 19th December and the joyous atomosphere matches my current mood. >
Congratulations!

Terejia wrote (December 21, 2008):
Jean Laaninen wrote:
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29556
(..)
> ---Thanks for explaining a bit -- more of an auditory reaction, then on your part, which is the first part of the defintion I posted. The area of critical thinking encompasses much more, but as long as we define our terms I believe we communicate quite well. I appreciate it too that you are going to look further into this area. <
Yes, I'm looking forward to making more progresss. As I said in my previous post, I am in a process of learning and the thema like aethetic and/or Bach's music is very profound to explore into. I am nowhere near satisfying level.

(Terejia wrote ):
>> I finally graduated from my internship as of 19th December and the joyous atomosphere matches my current mood. <<
(Jean wrote):
> Congratulations! <
Thank you :-) What I learned during intern is, how dangerous it is in legal area to be one-sided ; to be too subjective ; not to have multiple viewpoint to see the same agenda from different perspective, different light. Multiple viewpoints/multiple perspective is not only valuable; to go on without it is very dangerous.

Weekly discussion of the given cantata from multiple viewpoints is very helpful and valuable. I tend to be very one-sided when I am on my own. I'm looking forward to see multiple viewpoints about this masterpiece, BWV 191.

Ed Myskowski wrote (December 21, 2008):
BWV 191 [was: Bach and misc.]

Terejia wrote:
>I attended a seminar addressed to lawyers and social workers on the subject of Livelihood Protection. As you might know in news, recent financial crisis and job shortage is driving more and more people on the street in this cold winter. I came acquainted with many social workers and I realized we both share the same earnest desire : may the text of the first movement of BWV 191 come true and we see peace on earth!<
The text of the Latin Gloria, for BWV 191, includes the prayer:
<And on earth peace to men of good will> (translation from Durr).

This phrase is most often presented in English with a small but important transposition, along the lines of:<And on earth peace and goodwill unto men> (from notes to Herreweghe, BWV 243a, where the French and German correspond to the Latin, only the English is transposed).

BWV 243a came to mind because it was the choice by Brian McCreath this morning for his FM radio presentation (also available worldwide, www.wgbh.org) for the Fourth Sunday in Advent. It is interesting, and not likely a coincidence, that this most fundamental of prayers - On earth peace to men of good will - is included in Bachs first (1723) and final (1745) Christmas compositions for Leipzig.

I especially note the <men of good will>, and presumably associated good works. Save Jimmy from the fire!? (for those following the fine print).

On a personal note to Terejia, congratulations on completing your internship, and on your excellent cantata introductions!

Douglas Cowling wrote (December 22, 2008):
BWV 191 Bach's Libretto

Terejia wrote:
> The cantata to be discussed this week is BWV 191. <
Do we have any evidence that Bach performed any Latin cantatas by other composers in the Leipzig services? We know that polyphonic Latin motets were sung regularly at the beginning of the service as introits and to replace the cantata at St. Thomas in the morning when the concerted cantata was sung at St. Nicholas on alternate weeks.

Cantata 191 is a very odd work. Glorious music but a very unusual text. The libretto draws on neither Latin scriptural verses or modern Latin poetry written by a contemporary academic poet. Rather it draws on two liturgical texts inspired by the angelic song to the shepherds in Luke.

The first movement takes the opening verses from the liturgical Gloria in Excelsis Deo, the "Greater Doxology" in the standard mass text. The second and third movements are drawn from the Gloria Patri, the "Lesser Doxology", which was sung daily to conclude the chanting of Latin psalms and canticles at Matins and Vespers. Bach set the text conventionally at the end of the Magnificat as so many other composers such as Handel and Vivaldi did in their Latin psalms and canticles.

But in this cantata Bach sets liturgical texts which have been plucked out of their normal position in the sequence of services. The first movement is particularly bizarre as that text would already have been sung in a concerted setting at the beginning of the same service! Nor is it all normal to have the Gloria Patri set as a solo duet followed by a chorus. Bach's disposition in the Magnificat is more conventional: a choral andante/adagio "Gloria Patri" followed by an allegro "Sicut Erat In Principio".

Having said that, I recently researched a reconstruction of an 18th century Roman Vespers with the music of Handel and Vivaldi which the Tallis Choir of Toronto performed. I was intrigued with Vivaldi's setting of the opening responses which were laid out as three-movement work:

1. Chorus: Deus in Adjutorium Meum
2. Aria (soprano): Gloria Patri
3. Chorus: Sicut Erat in Principio

Vivaldi's setting is a liturgical work intended to open Vespers, but its similarities to Cantata 191 is striking.

One can understand Bach's desire to reuse this incomparable music, but what was the motivation in fashioning this unique text?

William Hoffman wrote (December 22, 2008):
Douglas Cowling wrote [Libretto]:
< I was intrigued with Vivaldi's setting of the opening responses which were laid out as three-movement work:
1. Chorus: Deus in Adjutorium Meum
2. Aria (soprano): Gloria Patri
3. Chorus: Sicut Erat in Principio
Vivaldi's setting is a liturgical work intended to open Vespers, but its similarities to Cantata 191 is striking.
One can understand Bach's desire to reuse this incomparable music, but what was the motivation in fashioning this unique text? >
William Hoffman replies: Thank you for your exegis of the canticles/pslams and the Lesser Doxology. A Bach-Vivaldi connection? Most certainly. About 1725, Bach sent the performing parts for his Missa Sanctus, BWV 232III, to a certain "Count Franz Anton Sporck, a Bohemian nobleman and music enthusiast based in Prague," according to Geo. Stauffer in his BWV 232 monograph. It turns out that Sporck may have first encountered Bach at Carlsbad in 1719, had strong connections to the Dresden Court and strong connections to Vivaldi. Sporck collected many of Vivaldi's concerti as well as vocal works, which may have included not only the great Gloria but also a Kyrie and Credo. Vivaldi never finished a complete Mass, as Bach did. Vivaldi composed much vesper music, while Handel has left us some early works. Unfortunately, Vivaldi died in Vienna c.1740, burned out on operas as Handel did.

Also, in a little while, I'll send out my Fugitive notes on BWV 191.

William Hoffman wrote (December 22, 2008):
BWV 191: Fugitive Notes

Much has happened since Thomas Braatz' BWV 191 Commentary (BCW Recordings, Intro platelet) of December 26, 2001. Now, we have not only new research findings but also, IMHO, a stronger Bach sense and sensibility, a perspeof greater depth and breadth. As a result, we are able to accept the work on its own terms and merits, as Jean observes in the recent Mesa AZ performance, and begin to connect the dots. Now, we are better able to imagine Bach's creative process in the context of the real world in which he functioned and to which he contributed so much. We learn more from this Learned Musician about his opportunity, motive, and method.

My key research source is George B. Stuffer's exemplary monograph, <Bach, The Mass in B Minor: The Great Catholic Mass (311 pp., Yale University Press, 2003). The search for original music sources is enhanced by William Scheide's recent essay, "<Sein Segen fliesset daher wie ein Strom,> BWV Anh. I 14: A Source for parodied Arias in the B-Minor Mass?" in <About Bach,> Festschrift for Christoph Wolff; eds. Gregory G. Butler, George B. Stauffer, and Mary Dalton Greer (pp. 69-77, University of Illinois Press, 2008).

Bach's so-called "Missa Cantata (Latin Music) for Christmas Day" is listed in Schmieder as Latin Music for the first Christmas Festival (Christ's Nativity) and its composition is dated 1743-46. As Thomas observes in his Commentary (citing Gregory Butler), the work may have been presented on Christmas Day 1745 "to celebrate the Peace of Dresden at the conclusion of the 2nd Silesian War (during which Leipzig had been occupied by the Prussian troops of Leopold of Anhalt-Dessau) at a special academic thanksgiving service in the Leipzig University Church.."

As Thomas points out, the editors of the NBA KB I/2 offer three standard possibilities for Bach's composition of BWV 191: "1) replaced the usual cantata completely, 2) was performed for a very special occasion (not necessarily political), or 3) was considered as the primary cantata for Christmas Day." I guess that covers all the three bases.

My take (IMHO): Bach did not need to compose another Christmas Day German "cantata" for his well-ordered cycle of church-year music. He already had BWV 63 (cycle 1), BWV 91 (cycle 2), BWV 110 (cycle 3), BWV 197a (Cycle 4), and BWV 248I (Cycle 5). He also had on hand, besides BWV 191, two other Latin church works: BWV 243a Magnificat and BWV 232/20 Sanctus in D.

As to a special Thanksgiving service, Bach had presented other works for similar special celebrations of either Lutheran observance or the Saxon Court. We have the three-day festival for Observance of the 200th Anniversary of the Augsburg Confession, June 26-28, 1730, with parodies of Town-Council cantatas BWV 120a, BWV Anh. 4a, and BWV Anh. 3. Later, we have the Festive Service of Allegiance to August III, April 21, 1733, at the Thomas Church, possibly with BWV 232I, Kyrie-Gloria; and a Thanksgiving Service for the War of Polish Succession, July 6, 1734, at the Nikolas Church, possibly with BWV 248a, later parodied as BWV 248VI for Epiphany 1735.

A look at the actual work, BWV 191, shows that Bach presented a symmetrical three-movement (16-minute) piece: a stirring, dance-like chorus to the canticle "Glory to God in the Highest" (Luke 2:14, 3/8 giga-like), which previously began the Gloria of his B-Minor Missa; an intimate "Gloria patri" 4/4 slow love-duet for soprano and tenor, a contrafaction of the Domine Deus" from the same Missa; and another stirring, ¾ dance-like chorus, also a contrafaction of the Missa closing "Cum Sancto Spiritu." The two contrafactions (Latin parodies) are from the 4th Century Lesser Doxology, "Gloria patri" and the "sicut erat in principio." Bach's two-movement setting of the Lesser Doxology, performed after the sermon, could very well be another of his contributions to a well-regulated, well-ordered church music.

While BWV 191 is billed as Bach's only Latin "cantata," Bach also did contrafactions of mostly church cantata movements for his later Missa brevise (Kyrie-Gloria) "Short Masses," BWV 233-36, in the last half of the 1730, as well as his Missa tota in B Minor. The "Short Masses" may have been intended possibly for performance in Dresden either in Lutheran services for his son Wilhelm Friedemann or for one of his Catholic benefactors at the Saxon Court.

Obviously, Bach transformed the music for the three movements of BWV 191, in order, from his 1733 Missa. Here is a short summary of the possible musical origins of the three, according to Stauffer's monograph. "Gloria in excelsis" possibly came from a Koethen instrumental work (Smend) but recent research (Joshua Rifkin and John Butt) suggests a festive cantata from late 1720 to early 1730. The "Domine Deus" may have come from a lost duet in the dramma per musica, "Ihr Hauser des Himmels," BWV 193a/5, for the birthday of Augustus the Strong in 1727. The "Cum Sancto Spiritu" in fugal stile antico may have originated in a lost cantata from 1725-30.

Stauffer in his BWV 232 monograph notes that Bach made extensive revisions in the music for the Lesser Doxology. Bach used only the "A" section of the original love duet and adjusted the text and instrumentation of the closing fugal chorus. In both movements, Bach uses different texts simultaneously, called polytextuality, a common Mass compositional technique.

In the Lesser Doxology that closes Zelenka's Miserere, ZWV 57, there is a stile misto (mixed style) succession of four movements for soprano (aria, moderno) then chorus (antico) of the "Gloria patri," followed by the "Sicut erat" for soprano (moderno) then chorus (antico).

The search for the sources of other movements in the Mass in B Minor continues. It is based on the supposition that Bach's autograph score of the late 1740s is a clean, fair manuscript, that the music was mostly copied, rather than a working sketch. The adaptations would involve texts of contrafaction from German to Latin, rather than text substitute in German. Therefore, it is impossible to compare the Latin texts to any German counterparts/predecessors. Using the proven examples where the original music survives (BWV 232/6,24=29/2, BWV 232/8=BWV 46/1, BWV 232/13=BWV 171/1, BWV 232/16=BWV 12/1, BWV 232/19=BWV 120/2, BWV 232/21=BWV 2151, BWV 232/23=BWV 11/4), scholars usually search for music with similar affect and stylistic elements.

The recent findings of Bach scholar William Scheide, age 94!, suggest that as many as all four arias from the lost sacred wedding Cantata BWV Anh. 14 of Feb. 12, 1725, may survive, adapted in the Mass in B Minor (BWV 232). They are opening aria, "His blessings flow" (Ecc. 39:22), as No. 5, "Laudamus Te" for alto and violin; BWV Anh. 14/3, aria "Happy are you" (Ezek 47:1,4), as No. 10, "Quoniam," for bass and horn; Arioso No. 4, "Bitterness withdraws from you" (Ex. 18:25) as No. 22, Benedictus qui venit," for soprano and flute; and Aria No. 6, "So step into paradise" (Gen. 2:11), as No. 18, "Et in Spiritum Sanctum" for bass and two oboes d'amore. While all the music is lost, Bach took the text directly from the Bible, as he had done in some of his earliest cantatas.

Tdate of Feb. 12, 1725 is significant in Bach's compositional process. The previous day, Quinquagesima Estomihi Sunday, Bach presented his penultimate chorale cantata in the second cycle. The next day, the beginning of Lent, he presented this wedding cantata, which may have been the springboard for his Great Mass; on February 23 his Weissenfels serenade BWV 249a, which became the first of his parodied oratorios, for Easter, April 1; on February 24, the last extant chorale cantata in the cycle, Cantata BWV 1, for the Feast of the Annunciation; and on Good Friday, March 30, the second version of his St. John Passion, in lieu of a Picander Poetic Passion, text only BWV Anh. 169, which became the textual basis for the St. Matthew Passion of 1727.

What a serendipitous situation in Lent 1725! Having produced almost two full cycles of church-year cantatas, Bach begins to turn systematically to large-scale church works: oratorios, passions, and Masses. Perhaps this, in a positive sense, helps explain why Bach ceased to write sustained weekly cantata cycles. He had reached a higher creative plateau?

Provenance: I think the autograph of the B-Minor Missa and Mass went to Carl Philipp Emmanuel and the Credo intonation draft was copied by Altnikol in 1755. Meanwhile, Wilhelm Friedemann may have possessed the score of BWV 191, while no performing parts survive.

The BWV 191 commentary lag/gap will catch up, as we examine the genesis of this work, which is part and parcel of the genesis of the Missa tota. Perhaps, the parts are greater than the sum? Or does this BWV 191 tail perhaps wag the "great" dog, which, like Milton's Paradise Lost (a monumental oratorio?), is finally an epic journey into faith, humanity and the creative process?

John Pike wrote (December 22, 2008):
[To Ed Myskowski, regarding Bach and misc.] Mmm. I've always taken it to mean "peace and goodwill towards (all) men", which is surely the Christian message.

Douglas Cowling wrote (December 22, 2008):
William Hoffman wrote [Fugitive Notes]:
< Or does this BWV 191 tail perhaps wag the "great" dog, which, like Milton's Paradise Lost (a monumental oratorio?), is finally an epic journey into faith, humanity and the creative process? >
Thanks for the outline of Cantata BWV 191, especially the Dresden connection.

Some scholars believe that the original libretto (now lost) for Haydn's "Creation" was written for Handel who never set it. It was presented to Haydn when he visited London. It was then reworked into its present form. Interestingly, Haydn authorized both the German and the English versons simultanesously.

Ed Myskowski wrote (December 22, 2008):
BWV 191 [was: Bach and history]

John Pike responded to my post:
>Mmm. I've always taken it to mean "peace and goodwill towards (all) men", which is surely the Christian message.<
EM:
I wonder how surely? For example, in the plain mans guide to Latin, from the site www.latin-mass-society.org (see disclaimer below):

<It has however frequently been a source of puzzlement as to why Catholics and Protestants seem to have different translations (“to men of goodwill” and “goodwill to men” respectively). The reason is that the oldest and best manuscripts, followed by St. Jerome in the Vulgate, have “to men of goodwill”. However, at a very early stage in the manuscript tradition some careless scribe omitted the final letter from the Greek word “eudókias”, thereby transforming it from a genitive (“of goodwill”) to a nominative (“goodwill”). Since the result still made grammatical sense the error was not spotted and subsequent copyists perpetuated it, thereby giving rise to a whole family of manuscripts which contain the error.>

I was not originally writing to challenge anyones beliefs, but to support my retort to Doug (citing Luther): <Save Jimmy from the fire!?> I only discovered the historic uncertainty in translation subsequently, in considering this present response to John.

Note the consistency of <to men of goodwill> with, for example, James 1:14: <What does it profit, my bethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him?>

Disclaimer: I have used the website for information only, I have not encountered it before, and I have no specific spiritual affinity with it.

Apologies in advance if the Greek word cited is scrambled in transmission.

Jean Laaninen wrote (December 22, 2008):
[To Ed Myskowski, regarding Bach and history] And now, also to all women...smile. I am not really a feminist, but I have really enjoyed the change in translation or writing to his or her/men and women in recent years. Sure, one has to type a little bit more, or one could simply say 'to all humans.' No...I haven't hit the punch before writing this, but I just could not resist. I truly enjoy all of these chats, and one thing I have learned from so many of you is that good will abounds. Let it stretch to the far corners of the earth this season as celebrated in so many ways, and continue on through the new year and beyond.

John Pike wrote (December 22, 2008):
[To Ed Myskowski, regarding Bach and history] Thanks for this, Ed. Most interesting. We have now strayed OT, but if any clergyman on list feels so moved, perhaps they could comment further on this to me OFF LIST, and also on the famous passage from James which Ed quotes. I have never seen James as being in conflict with Paul on this, but merely saying that "although you are saved by faith, what's the point in that if good works do not follow as a result". However, reading the quotation above again now, it does seem that James is in absolute contradiction of Paul. There is also a passage in Matthew (I think), where Jesus says something along the lines of "There will be many who come to me on that day and say Lord, Lord, did we not preach in your name and drive out evil spirits in your name, and I will say to them: "I never knew you. Away from me you evil doers"". Things get even more complex when thinking about a section in an epistle of John about "Testing the Spirits". John advises that you can tell a good spirit from an evil one because the good spirit will profess that Jesus Christ is Lord, but the section from Matthew above suggests that that, on its own, is not enough. Putting all this together, it seems to me that we must be justified by faith but that the good works must then follow, or are we all in for a very big surprise at the end, as some claim?

I don't know. I'm sure it mattered to Bach and it certainly matters to me.

Thanking you in anticipation.

Kim Patrick Clow wrote (December 22, 2008):
Douglas Cowling wrote [Fugitive Notes]:
< Some scholars believe that the original libretto (now lost) for Haydn's "Creation" was written for Handel who never set it. It was presented to Haydn when he visited London. >
I'm curious which scholars are saying that. I'd like to dig into this more.

Peter Smaill wrote (December 22, 2008):
[To Kim Patrick Clow, regarding Fugitive Notes] This curious transmission is all set out in Christopher Hogwood's biography of Handel. The earlier source is H C Robbins Landon in "Haydn: the Years of 'The Creation'".

The writer E J dent suggested that a text derived from "Paradise Lost" by Milton was given to Handel in 1744. From this source somehow evolved the libretto for The Creation, given by Salomon to Haydn as the composer left England for the second time in 1795.This text , which has since disappeared, was translated by van Swieten, to be "set in front of the excellent Haydn for him to compose in the manner of Handel"

When the full score of "The Creation"was eventually published in 1800 it was indeed in parallel English and German translations.

Douglas Cowling wrote (December 23, 2008):
[To Kim Patrick Clow, regarding Fugitive Notes] Hogwood mentions it briefly in his Handel biography. His period instrument performance of the "Creation" used the English translatiso I imagine the scholarly apparatus is in the notes.

Terejia wrote (December 23, 2008):
on text "et in terra pax ..." Re: BWV 191

John Pike wrote:
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29578
(large portion snipped )
< I don't know. I'm sure it(Terejia inserts : i.e. an APPARENT contradiction of the two Epistoles authors(Paul and James) as to if it is faith or conduct that counts ) mattered to Bach and it certainly matters to me.
Thanking you in anticipation. >
I have some Protestant friends outside this list. The text "et in terra pax hominibus bone voluntatis" may well have a specific quality of meaning for Christians.

However, to the best of my knowledge, the prayer for peace on Earth is shared by all bona fide people regardless of faith denomination or non-faith. Protestant Christians tend to emphasize the specialties and/or only-oneness of their faith, which sometimes doesn't align with the overall values of civic world.

If my modest level of understanding SHOULD be correct by any chance, I perceive that Lutherian church and civic groups seem to have different rules when it comes to the matter of faith. In civic groups, all the faiths or non-faiths have equal value but inside Lutherian church it does not seem to be the case.

Also in a civic world, especially in a society like Japanese society, those who throw the ball that the group cannot catch are not quite acceptable to the group even when "the ball " is something invaluable or right or correct, beautiful, or the like. For example, the choir conductor in my church tries to impose correct singing-she means being faithful to the notes- upon the congregations, which caused her to be in trouble in the church.

Such an group attitude may not be always correct nor always serve to the group. On the other hand, for the sake of communication, throwing a ball that might cause a rejection reaction at the receipient may not always serve. Difficult and delicate matter but I trust members can deal with the issue much better than myself. Both John and Ed are very sensitive, very intelligent and first and foremost always show kind consideration toward other members.

Peace be unto you :-))

Terejia wrote (December 23, 2008):
seasonal greeting message as in cantata Re: BWV 191 [was Bach and history]

Jean Laaninen wrote:
http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29576
< And now, also to all women...smile. I am not really a feminist, but I have really enjoyed the change in translation or writing to his or her/men and women in recent years. Sure, one has to type a little bit more, or one could simply say 'to all humans.' No...I haven't hit the punch before writing this, but I just could not resist. I truly enjoy all of these chats, and one thing I have learned from so many of you is that good will abounds. Let it stretch to the far corners of the earth this season as celebrated in so many ways, and continue on through the new year and beyond. >
Thank you for this beautiful seasonal greeting, Jean. Adding my own earnest wishes for good, joy and peace unto all humanbeings.

Terejia wrote (December 23, 2008):
apology for not being able to give my reply to all posts

Thank you al for your lively discussions in a peaceful atomosphere.

Aplogy for not being able to reply to all the posts. I find the thread about Lutherian liturgy between Doug(who might well have practical concern on the matter as a music director of Church), William Hoffman, Kim to be interesting-probably of great value to the whole list but since I have nothing to say, I decided it be better left to the hands of more knowledgeable persons. Oh, no need to apology, after all...

I appreciate Ed's support and compliment to my "excellent?(to use his gracious complimentary word)" introduction...the truth of the matter is I am probably more than 80 % dependent on William on the matter of introduction, not because we arranged it that way but as a matter of fact. One of the thing I learned during my internship from my boss is how to utilize personel resources for a specific purpose. In this case, I'm glad I seem to have suceeded, to some degree, to make a knowledgeable person willing to contribute to support Aryeh's purpose, i.e. to encourage all the members to appreciate Bach better.

I'm going to serve as an organist in Christmas Eve mass and Christmas morning mass. Our choir conductor all of a sudden requested me to move the key of "O Holy Night" from Des-Dur to C-dur last Sunday. It may well be a piece of cake for a professionally trained organists but for me it took some effort. It was lucky for me that it was not the other way round! (sidenote : it is a shame, because, the choir used to sing 'suscepit Israel' from Bach's D-dur Magnificat, before the Father abruptly changed choir conductor and ordered to change the piece sung for the sake of popularity!! ) Beside, as is usually the case with funeral, I had funeral duty last night and today's afternoon. I feel a bit tired now.

Just to get back to BWV 191 in my last paragraph- I'm going to play Es-dur fuga of BWV 552 as a postlude and accidentally I noticed-probably much belatedly-that C part of that organ masterpiece has the same rhythm as A part of first movement of BWV 191.

Happy Holiday greetings to all.

Ed Myskowski wrote (December 23, 2008):
BWV 191 [was Bach and history]

Therese wrote:
>I just thought that if we wish to have peace on earth, we'd better involve all humans, not only the "bonae voluntatis" ones!<
Leave it to a lady to point out that detail! Perhaps there has been more than one mistranslation from original through Greek to English? In which case, better fix up those French and German translations with Herreweghe, BWV 243a.

Thanks for the concert report!

Jean wrote:
>And now, also to all women...smile. I am not really a feminist<
The jazz legend Sun Ra said: <Just as every marine is a rifleman, so every Arkestran is a percussionist>

I would add, every man (homo, per Thomas Cahill) of goodwill is a feminist. Thanks for the book recommendation, Mysteries of the Middle Ages.

Ed Myskowski wrote (December 24, 2008):
BWV 191 text

Terejia wrote:
>The text "et in terra pax hominibus bone voluntatis" may well have a specific quality of meaning for Christians.<
Doug pointed out that this text (Gloria Excelsis or greater doxology(?)) would have been sung on a more or less weekly basis throughout Bach's Leipzig career, in earlier motets. Nonetheless, I would like to keep open the question as to whether it had special significance for Bach in relation to his original Christmas compositions, BWV 243a and BWV 191, almost like bookends for his Leipzig music.

An aside re BWV 243a: Brian McCreath offered the opinion, when he aired it Sunday, that it was Bachs announcement to the Leipzig officialdom: <You hired the right guy!>

Thanks, Brian, I hope a few others join us weekly, Sunday AM, www.wbgh.org. Radio, almost (but only almost!) as communal as live music.

Ed Myskowski wrote (December 24, 2008):
BWV 191 text

Thoughts while listening to a friend lead her annual (26th) Xmas sing-along:

The traditional carol, Gloria in Excelsis Deo, says nothing about peace on earth, nor goodwill.

The country tune, Peace in the Valley, can bring a tear to an Old Dudes eye, when sung from the heart.

Listening closely, I noticed:
<Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer
Yule go down in herstory.>

Not exactly Bach concert performance, but in the spirit of the season (solstice plus), and current discussion.

As I write, what should appear on the radio but three Xmas cantatas by Stoltzen.

Baroque (but happy!), Ed Myskowski

Continue of this part of the discussion, see: Gottfried Heinrich Stölzel & Bach [Bach & OtheComposers]

Terejia wrote (December 24, 2008):
Bach and Christmas music

Ed Myskowski wrote: http://launch.groups.yahoo.com/group/BachCantatas/message/29604
< Thoughts while listening to a friend lead her annual (26th) Xmas sing-along:
The traditional carol, Gloria in Excelsis Deo, says nothing about peace on earth, nor goodwill. >
Now that you reminded me! Indeed.

We sing Gloria as part of Catholic liturgy, except for Advent and Lent season, regularly in mass, not particularly in Christmas limited.

>> The country tune, Peace in the Valley, can bring a tear to an Old Dudes eye, when sung from the heart.
Listening closely, I noticed:
<Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer
Yule go down in herstory.>
Not exactly Bach concert performance, but in the spirit of the season (solstice plus), and current discussion.<<

The point is, "from the heart", IMHO.

>> As I write, what should appear on the radio but three Xmas cantatas by Stoltzen.
Baroque (but happy!), Ed Myskowski<<
As I do not have large CD collections and it is extremely difficult to get CDs in Japan (many times I've told by the CD shop clerks, that certain and certain CD is out of print, while it is on sale in Amazon. US), I obtained a membership in Naxos library. I made up a playing list titled "Christmas series", in which I included BWV 248 (by Suzuki ), BWV 132, BWV 191, BWV 61, BWV 243a (by either Rilling or Koopman), Charpentier's Noel, Heinrich Schutz, Palestrina,Corelli etc.

Now after having enjoyed all the good wishes, heartwarming greetings, joyful music, presents,etc., I have come to enjoy the last item of Christmas gift list from my Santa Clause, which is catching up some sleep and quiet rest. Since Bach's music is too lively, too much upward vector, more spirit awakening rather than calming down for me to go to sleep or rest, I now choose Louis Couperin and John Dowland to rest quietly and go to sleep.

 

Continue on Part 3

Cantata BWV 191: Complete Recordings | Recordings of Individual Movements | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

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