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Cantata BWV 121
Christum wir sollen loben schon
Provenance

Thomas Braatz wrote (May 15, 2003):
The Autograph Score:

The autograph score is currently in the Biblioteka Jagiellońska in Kraków, Poland. Originally it probably went to W.F. Bach after Bach’s death. The next owner was Johann Georg Nacke (1718-1804), whose collection of Bachiana was passed on to his successor as Cantor in Oelsnitz, Johann Gottlob Schuster (1765-1839.) Schuster’s collection of manuscripts, including the present cantata, were acquired by Franz Hauser in 1833. Together with most of Hauser’s collection, this cantata came to the BB (Staatsbibliothek Berlin) in 1904. Because it was moved for safe storage away from Berlin during WWII, it is now located in the Biblioteka Jagiellońska in Kraków.

Bach’s title on top of the 1st page reads:

J. J. Feria 2 Nativit: Xsti. Christum wir sollen loben schon

At the beginning of Mvt. 2, there is only the marking ‚Hautb.’ in front of the line that designates the part.

‘Recit’ appears above Mvt. 3.

The title over Mvt. 4 is ‘Aria Violini Viola é Basso’ Ms. 54-71 are not written out. Instead, the bc (separately) and the other instruments have the following: ‘1ma Reprisa | Da Capo’

Over Mvt. 5: ‘Recit.’

At the very end: ‘Fine | SDG’

The Original Set of Parts:

Anna Magdalena Bach soon turned these over (with a large number of other original sets of the cantatas) to the St. Thomas School in Leipzig. Today it is located in the Bach-Archiv of Leipzig.

The copyists involved are Johann Andreas Kuhnau, Johann Heinrich Bach, and Christian Gottlob Meißner. J. S. Bach very likely was involved in the numerous revisions.

The Original Parts are as follows:

1. Soprano (Kuhnau mvts. 1-5; J.H. Bach Mvt. 6)
2. Alto (Kuhnau)
3. Tenore (Kuhnau)
4. Basso (Kuhnau)
5. Cornetto (J. S. Bach – Title; J.H. Bach – everything else)
6. Trombona 1. (Kuhnau)
7. Trombona 2. (Kuhnau)
8. Trombona 3. (Kuhnau)
9. Hautbois d’Amour (J. S. Bach – ‘d’Amour’; Kuhnau – everything else)
10. Violino. 1mo (Kuhnau)
11. Violino. 2. (Kuhnau)
12. Viola (Kuhnau)
13. CONTINVO (Meißner – Title; Kuhnau – everything else)
14. CONTINVO (J.S.Bach – ‘pro Organo’ and figures; Meißner – everything else)

Original Parts (accompanying the autograph score):

1. Soprano (J. S. Bach)
2. Violin. 1mo. (Doublet) (Johann Heinrich Bach)
3. Violino 2. (Doublet) (Johann Heinrich Bach)
4. Continuo (Doublet) (Anonymous IIh everything but…) (W.F. BachMvt. 4)

Text:

The texts of Mvt. 1 & Mvt. 6 are taken from vs. 1 & 8 of Martin Luther’s chorale text “Christum wir sollen loben schon” (1524) which is an adaptation of and old church hymn “A soli ortus cardine.’

1st Performance:

According to Dürr, this cantata was 1st performed on the 2nd Christmas Day in 1724. The 2nd soprano part points to a later performance, the date of which can not be determined. The paper used is the same as the other parts, but Bach’s handwriting points to a 2nd Christmas Day from 1725 to 1730. Somehow the soprano part from the main set was temporarily not available, a fact which prompted Bach to copy out personally the later part. If this were to be considered a ripieno part, Mvt. 5 would not have been included.

 

Cantata BWV 121: Details & Complete Recordings | Recordings of Individual Movements | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

References: Main Page | Cantatas BWV 1-50 | Cantatas BWV 51-100 | Cantatas BWV 101-150 | Cantatas BWV 151-200 | Cantatas BWV 201-224 | Other Vocal BWV 225-249 | Chorales BWV 250-300 | Chorales BWV 301-350 | Chorales BWV 351-400 | Chorales BWV 401-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-524 | Vocal Works BWV Anh | BGA | NBA | BC: A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | Sources
Discussions of BWV Numbering System: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

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Last update: ýSeptember 27, 2011 ý22:27:04