Systematic Discussions of Bach’s Other Vocal Works
Motet BWV 231Sei Lob und Preis mit Ehren
Discussions in the Week of February 15, 2004Aryeh Oron wrote (February 15, 2004):
Motet BWV 231 – Sei Lob und Preis mit Ehren - Introduction
The chosen work for this week’s discussion (February 15, 2004) is the Motet BWV 231 ‘Sei Lob und Preis mit Ehren’ (Give glory, praise and honour).
Recordings, discussions & additional information
Your gate to the Motets BWV 225-231 - list of recordings, previous discussions, and additional information (texts & translations, score, commentaries, music examples, etc.) - is located at the page: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Vocal/BWV225-231.htm
BWV 231 is a four-part motet for SATB, consisting of only verse 5 of the chorale ’Nun lob, mein Seel, den Herren’, by Johann Gramann (also known by the name Poliander). Bach used verse from this chorale in some of his cantatas - BWV 17, BWV 28, BWV 29, BWV 51, and BWV 167 – and in the chorale (Mvt. 2) of the Motet BWV 225.
The date of the composition is uncertain (probably after 1724), but this music for Gramann’s text has been attributed to Bach and was included in the Breitkopf und Härtel edition of the works of J.S. Bach.
Possibly this motet was the opening movement of one of Bach’s lost cantatas, because of its lavish instrumentation, which includes a cornet, 2 oboes, 3 trombones, an oboe da caccia (taille), a bassoon, 2 violins, a viola, a cello, a bass violin and the usual organ. Like the Motet BWV 230, it is a work of praise, including a joy motif in its prayer, but this time there is only one continuous chorus of four parts, which is sung in canon throughout.
This is the least recorded of the motets (less than 10 recordings), probably due its doubtful authencity. Most of the recorded sets of the motets include only BWV 225-230, leaving BWV 231 out. This week we have the opportunity to dedicate listening time for this work, hearing it on its own terms, and let our ears telling us if its relative negligence has been justified.
Let’s the discussion begins!
Motets BWV 225-231: Details
Recordings: Until 1970 | 1971-1980 | 1981-1990 | 1991-2000 | From 2001
General Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Systematic Discussions: BWV 225 | BWV 226 | BWV 227 | BWV 228 | BWV 229 | BWV 230 | BWV 231
Individual Recordings: Motets – Cantus Cölln | Motets – Ericson | Motets – Fasolis | Motets – Harnoncourt | Motets - Kammler