Easy CantataJason Marmaras wrote (April 26, 2004):
Does anyone know of an easy (mostly vocally) Cantata? I would very much appreciate lists of what you know/can find.
John Pike wrote (April 26, 2004):
[To Jason Marmaras] They don't come much shorter than BWV 50 "Nun ist das Heil und die Kraft" which is a nice work nonetheless. I don't know how easy it is but it doesn't sound too difficult and a reasonable should be capable of learning it reasonably quickly.
Aryeh Oron wrote (April 26, 2004):
[To Jason Marmaras] Being non-performer and non-expert, only an avid listener, I am not well-equipped to answer your question from personal knowledge. To my ears Cantata BWV 196 sounds easy. However, even this cantata can give the outmost satisfaction given that it is performed with simplicity and sincerity (not an easy task for every performer), and avoiding extra sophistry.
Over the years there have been several discussions of similar topics in Choral Talk. Those discussions have been compiled into the following page of the BCW: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Topics/ChoralTalk.htm
Hope it helps,
John Reese wrote (April 26, 2004):
[To Jason Marmaras] Schweitzer suggests BWV 2, BWV 8, BWV 12, BWV 28, BWV 37, BWV 38, BWV 64, BWV 116, BWV 118, BWV 121, BWV 144, BWV 150, and BWV 179. These aren't necessarily easy to sing, but can be economical to perform.
Bradley Lehman wrote (April 26, 2004):
[To John Pike] BWV 50 is double chorus, though, and has three each of trumpets and oboes. It's not terribly difficult to get together--I remember playing organ continuo for it once, accompanying a divided college choir in a balcony, with the conductor directly behind me (standing on a box against the railing!)--but I'd suggest starting with something that has simpler instrumentation and more variation in it. If the point is to learn conducting, that is.
Maybe you could get a good solo singer and three others additionally as the chorus, and do one of the cantatas that is mostly that solo? For example, BWV 56 with a bass singer and several woodwind players? That way you'd get to rehearse some of everything: a chorale, two arias, a plain recitative, and an arioso; and work both with strings and winds...without having to deal with a bigger ensemble movement yet. I remember a performance of this one by friends of mine, by a student conductor working with one of the bass singers at our school: a similar goal, to learn some conducting techniques through this cantata BWV 56.
Adam Strange wrote (April 26, 2004):
[To Jason Marmaras] BWV 150 "Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich"
Very easy, majorly choral. It's often performed in Graduate conducting recitals. It's extremely accessible, and despite its ease, it's incredibly beautiful and sublime. I have yet to hear a bad recording...
Hope this helps,
Thomas Manhart wrote (April 27, 2004):
[To Adam Strange] Thanks adam for mentioning BWV 150. it's a beautiful piece. I tried to check Edition Breitkopf now for the performance material. There the cantata is mentioned without fagott, they don't even have a fagott part for sale, which confuses me as the score uploaded to the bach cantatas website has that obligatory fagott part. Can it just be replaced by the cello?
thanks for any help
Cara (Piano Pedal) wrote (April 27, 2004):
[To Thomas Manhart] Most of the time, I find, the fagott part simply doubles the continuo part during a major...um ...what's it called...when all the orchestra and singers are all playing and singing at the same time. For this cantata in particular (why is there no viola part?!), I don't think the fagott could simply be replaced by the cello-I've never seen the music, but I do know that the two have distinctly different sounds (good job, Cara! Yay!!) I don't have the slightest clue as to why Breitkopf wouldn't have the part. Breitkopf is a rather good editor...hmm...
Matthew Neugebauer wrote (April 28, 2004):
Jason Marmaras wrote: < Does anyone know of an easy (mostly vocally) Cantata? I would very much appreciate lists of what you know/can find >
Isn't that more of a relative question? Doesn't it largely depend on the singer?
Jason Marmaras wrote (April 30, 2004):
[To Aryeh Oron] My thanks, Aryeh (and everyone else who wrote or is writing)
I had downloaded and printed BWV 196, for its Duet (lol)
It did seem quite easy in the last movement where it's not so very contrapuntal.
But the first chorus (2nd movement) seems quite tough in solfeging (all those dissonant entries - or rather, entries on dissonances)