Bach Cantatas

Bach Cantatas

An ever-growing collection of cantatas by J.S. Bach

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Bach Cantatas
  • BWV 39 Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot

    The text of BWV 39 is based on Isaiah 58: 7-8, about offering food to your hungry neighbours and offering shelter to those without a home.

    Listen out for the chorus which starts with a step-motif that suggests the poor are staggering along in exhaustion, but then evolves to an intensely emotion...

  • BWV 113 Herr Jesu Christ, du höchstes Gut

    The antidote for the burdened and sorrowful soul in BWV 113 is God’s ‘healing Word’ which causes the heart to laugh again! This laughter can be heard in the Chorale and Recitative, with a burst of playful semiquavers in the continuo cello.

    JS BACH BWV 113 Herr Jesu Christ, du höchstes Gut

  • BWV 138 Warum betrübst du dich, mein Herz

    BWV 138 is often described as one of Bach’s more experimental and modern cantatas. The text draws upon the conflicting feelings of anxiety for the unknown, the need to place faithful trust in God and the alternate reality of heaven. The resolution of this is heard at the close of the cantata’s on...

  • BWV 84 Ich bin vergnügt mit meinem Glücke

    This cantata sets a modest tone for the morning. Bach focuses his listeners on life as it is now; we should be content with our lot and ‘that which God has allocated to us’, not longing for more in future, nor regretting the past when our end comes.

    JS Bach Cantata BWV 84 ‘Ich bin vergnügt mit ...

  • BWV 60 O Ewigkeit du Donnerwort

    This cantata is a dialogue between fear (reinforced by the alto) and hope (that’s the tenor); a fitting accompaniment to a talk about the different thoughts and feelings that music can evoke.

    JS BACH BWV 60 O Ewigkeit du Donnerwort

  • BWV 9 Es ist das Heil uns kommen her

    This cantata is all about healing and enlightenment, reflecting on humanity’s salvation by God’s grace alone. The dramatic weight of this music is emphasised by the voice of Christ in three sermon-like solos, performed by Rising Star bass Dominic Sedgwick.

    JS BACH BWV 9 Es ist das Heil uns komm...