2 LP - SKW 4/1-2 - (p) 1972

2 CD - 8.35030 ZL - (c) 1985

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750)

Das Kantatenwerk - Vol. 4

Kantate "Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen", BWV 12
23' 51" A
Solo: Alt, Tenor, Baß - Chor

Oboe, Fagott; Tromba da tirarsi; Violino I/II, Viola I/II; Continuo

- Sinfonia 2' 21"

- Coro "Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen" 6' 02"

- Arioso (Alto) "Wir müssen durch viel Trübsal" 0' 57"

- Aria (Alto) "Kreuz und Krone sind verbunden" 6' 24"

- Aria (Basso) "Ich folge Christo nach" 2' 46"

- Aria (Tenore) "Sei getreu, alle Pein" 4' 18"

- Choral (Coro) "Was Gott tut, das ist wohlgetan" 0' 53"

Kantate "Meine Seufzer, meine Tränen", BWV 13
23' 02" B
Solo: Sopran, Alt, Tenor, Baß - Chor

Flauto I/II, Oboe da caccia; Streicher; Continuo

- Aria (Tenore) "Meine Seuyer, meine Tränen" 7' 27"

- Recitativo (Alto) "Mein liebster Gott läßt mich" 1' 14"

- Choral (Alto) "Der Gott, der mir hat versprochen" 3' 09"

- Recitativo (Soprano) "Mein Kummer nimmet zu" 1' 22"

- Aria (Basso) "Ächzen und erbärmlich weinen" 9' 02"

- Choral (Coro) "So sei nun, Seele, deine" 0' 48"

Kantate "Wär Gott nicht mit uns diese Zeit", BWV 14

17' 36" C
Solo: Sopran, Tenor, Baß - Chor

Corno da caccia, Oboe I/II; Streicher; Continuo

- Coro "Wär Gott nicht mit uns diese Zeit" 6' 21"

- Aria (Soprano) "Unsre Stärke heißt zu schwach" 4' 45"

- Recitativo (Tenore) "Ja, hätt es Gott nur zugegeben" 0' 44"

- Aria (Basso) "Gott, bei deinem starken Schützen" 4' 43"

- Choral (Coro) "Gott Lob und Dank, der nicht zugab" 1' 03"

Kantate "Herr Gott, dich loben wir", BWV 16
18' 00" D
Solo: Alt, Tenor, Baß - Chor

Oboe I/II, Oboe da caccia, Corno da caccia; Streicher; Continuo

- Coro "Herr Gott, dich loben wir" 1' 38"

- Recitativo (Basso) "So stimmen wir bei dieser frohen Zeit" 1' 14"

- Aria (Basso) und Coro "Laßt uns jauchzen, laßt uns freuen" 3' 50"

- Recitativo (Alto) "Ach treuer Hort" 1' 29"

- Aria (Tenore) "Geliebter Jesu, du allein" 8' 49"

- Choral (Coro) "All solch dein Güt wir preisen" 1' 00"

Kantate 12 - 13 - 14 - 16

Walter Gampert (Solist der Tölzer Knabenchor), Sopran (BWV 13,4)

Peter Hinterreiter (Solist der Tölzer Knabenchor), Sopran (BWV 14,2)
Paul Esswood, Alt

Kurt Equiluz, Tenor (BWV 12,6; 13,1)

Marius van Altena, Tenor
Max van Egmond, Baß

Tölzer Knabenchor / Gerhard Schmidt-Gaden, Leitung
King's College Choir Cambridge / David Willcocks, Leitung

- Marie Leonhardt, Violine (Solo)

- Lucz van dael, Violine
- Alda Stuurop, Violine
- Antoinette van den Hombergh, Violine
- Janneke van der Meer, Violine
- Wim ten Have, Viola
- Wiel Peeters, Viola
- Anner Bylsma, Violoncello
- Dijck Koster, Violoncello
- Anthony Woodrow, Violone
- Hermann Baumann, Corno da caccia
- Ralph Bryant, Tromba da tirarsi
- Frans Brüggen, Blockflöte
- Kees Boeke, Blockflöte
- Jürg Schaeftlein, Oboe (BWV 12,1; 12,4; 14,4), Oboe da caccia (BWV 13,1; 13,3; 16,5)

- Paul Hailperin, Oboe (BWV 14,4)

- Ku Ebbinge, Oboe, Oboe da caccia (BWV 13,6)

- Maarten Karres, Oboe
- Milan Turković, Fagotto (BWV 12,4)
- Peter Mauruschat, Fagotto
- Gustav Leonhardt, Orgel
- Bob van Asperen, Orgel

Gustav Leonhardt, Gesamtleitung
Luogo e data di registrazione
- Amsterdam (Olanda) - gennaio & aprile 1971
Registrazione live / studio
Producer / Engineer
Wolf Erichson
Prima Edizione CD
Teldec "Das Alte Werk" - 8.35030 ZL - (2 cd) - 47' 06" + 35' 54" - (c) 1985
Prima Edizione LP
Telefunken "Das Alte Werk" - 6.35030 EX (SKW 4/1-2) - (2 lp) - 47' 06" + 35' 54" - (p) 1972

"Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen" (BWV 12) was written for the Sunday ”Jubilate,” the Third Sunday after Easter, which vvas April 22, 1714. This was the second cantata Bach wrote after his appointment as music director to the Court of Weimar. The libretto is without freely written recitative and this fact, together with the three arias vvhich follow closely on one another, shows it to be an unmistakable transitional form of the Weimar poet Salomo Franck. Despite missing proof of the fact, we can regard him as the undoubted author of the libretto. For the content of his work Franck turned to the Gospel reading for that Sunday (John 16: 16-23) and its basic thoughts of sadness (about Jesus’s farewell) and joy (at seeing Jesus again) become the dominant theme of
the cantata.
In his composition Bach interprets these basic thoughts of the libretto with those means which the teaching of the ”musica poetica” of his time provided. ”Sadness” is portrayed by chromaticism, for example in the falling bass line of the opening chorus, but “joy” on the other hand is illustrated by rising diatonic harmony like that which is to be found in the recitative, in the second aria and in the final chorale as well. There are further musical techniques, such as canonic passages and chorale extracts in instrumental form which serve to clarify and give point to the libretto.
The solemn and separate instrumental introduction - in later cantatas this sort of introduction becomes an integral part of the opening chorus - is followed by a sedately constructed choral section whose main section is a chaconne built up over the chromatic descent of the continuo bass. We know this chaconne from its later being reworked into the “Crucifixus” of the B-minor Mass. The middle section has a faster tempo and its underlying structure and harmony are less complicated.
The biblical text in the third movement is presented as recitative accompanied by strings, the top voice of which (violin 1) plays a rising scale of sustained notes. The full meaning of this is made clear when the alto sings the words ”in das Reich Gottes eingehen” (to enter the kingdom of God) to a rising scalewise motif as well.
The change from sadness to joy is reflected in the fluctuating character of the three arias. In the fifth movement we again encounter the rising scalic figure, this time with numerous canonic parts as symbols for the image of Christ. In the sixth movement the trumpet plays the chorale melody (without text) ”Jesu, meine Freude” (Jesus, my Joy) in place of an obbligato instrument, as if to say: Jesus turns sadness into joy.
The final chorale, which as usual is simply constructed, is extended into solemn, five-part harmony by an independent, high instrumentalline.

"Meine Seufzer, meine Tränen" (BWV 13) forms part of Bach's third cantata cycle and was first performed on January 20, 1726, the Second Sunday after Epiphany. It has been ascertained that the librettist was the court librarian at Darmstadt, Georg Christian Lehms. His source was the Sunday Gospel (The Marriage in Cana, John 2: 1-11) and from this he upholds the philosophy that the believer can still be sure of God’s help, even when it is not evident at the moment (John 2: 4, "Mine hour is not yet come”). The librettist chooses the hymn verse of the third movement as the turning point from desperation to trust in God, while the final chorus, which is missing in Lehms's version, is an addition by Bach.
Bach's composition is distinguished by its specifically chamber music character. There is no important opening choral section and the choir is only used tutti in the final chorus. The string ensemble, too, which usually forms the backbone of the orchestra, only appears in the choral sections while the characteristic woodwind instrumentation of two flutes and an oboe da caccia lends the work individual color. Although it is true that the two movements in recitative form are equally powerful in their expression, despite being set in secco style, it is also true that the main musical weight is centered in the arias. Both arias express in their own way the sighing of the sinner after his deliverance - the first aria by means of alternating woodwind passages, the second by means of two recorders in unison and a solo violin which plays a lamenting melody replete with unusual intervals. In this second aria an opposing force takes shape by means of a rising scalic passage. This opposing force dominates the middle section of the aria in particular, bespeaking the consolation that appears to the person who “looks heavenwards.”
"Wär Gott nicht mit uns diese Zeit" (BWV 14) must be regarded as a later work since there are hardly any cantatas preserved from Bach's last period. It was first performed on January 30, 1735, a few weeks after the Christmas Oratorio. As far as the libretto is concerned, it belongs to the type of chorale cantatas which make up the core of Bach's second cantata cycle of 1724/1725 (because Easter fell on an unusually early Sunday in 1725, the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany was omitted). The beginning and final verses of Martin Luther’s three-verse paraphrase of Psalm 124 are used literally (movements 1 and 5), the middle verse (movement 3) returns again to recitative with a paraphrased and free rendering while the words of the two arias are both free developments of the central thought of the psalm. The relationship to the Sunday Gospel (Matthew 8: 23-27, Jesus Calms the Tempest) is obvious: only God’s protection can keep us from harm. The relationship makes itself clear, too, in the special picture, called forth in the psalm and in the cantata’s third and fourth movements, of the torrents of water from which God saves us.
The usual formal design is here made up of two arias framing a recitative section followed by a simple four-part final chorus. However, the first movement has a very striking artistic form and this can perhaps only be fully appreciated after several hearings: the unornamented song melody is solemnly drawn out by the winds (horn and two oboes in unison) and, played line for line, is the crowning element of a movement in motet form in which the strings double the voice lines colla parte while they in turn sing every line as a counter-fugue. Every entry of the song melody is followed at the next entry by its inversion. It is certainly no coincidence that such a movement, which seems like a foretaste of Bach’s late contrapuntal works, is to be found in one of his last church cantatas.
"Herr Gott, dich loben wir" (BWV 16) is, like Cantata No. 13, one of the works which Bach composed to Georg Christian Lehms’s libretti at the end of 1725 and beginning of 1726. However, the final chorus is once again a personal addition on the part of Bach. The work was first performed on January 1, 1726 and, while making hardly any reference to the Gospel reading for New Year’s Day (Christening of Jesus), instead offers thanks to God for proved works and prays for future blessing.
Bach’s composition shows how much he avoided using any particular kind of scheme while still being able to impart each work with its own distinctive character. Although Lehms had only intended the choir to take part in the first movement, Bach uses it not only for the final chorus but also includes extensive passages for chorus in the aria as well. In fact, the shortness of the transitional secco recitative (movement 2) and the opening written for the voice of the third movement without the usual instrumental prelude together very nearly create the impression that the first three movements represent a single work. The German words of the Te Deum form the basis of the opening choral movement in which the soprano and horn parts carry the chorale melody against lively vocal and instrumental counterpoint. After a short recitative, this moves into an aria whose multi-layered construction can be simply described in the form ”choral fugue - solo - choral fugue.” Only after a further secco recitative does the only solo aria of this cantata follow. With it comes a change from jubilation to an intimate act of prayer which is further underscored by means of a solo obbligato instrument. The instrument used was an oboe da caccia in 1726 but at a later performance a "violetta" (viola) was used.

Alfred Dürr

Nikolaus Harnoncourt (1929-2016)
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