Bach: The Cantatas

Bach Cantatas
I have arranged these cantatas, according to the church calendar and they are presented, in that order, starting from the 13th Sunday after Trinity, first posted, in 2020 and to continue,
-in order of Sundays and feast-days and the marathons of Christmas and Easter and Pentecost-
for at least 5 years, the final two cycles, of course, becoming steadily more and more sparse.

To date, November 2022, there are still two-and-a-bit-more such cycles, to run.

Where gaps have occurred, initially, I began, by filling these, with wedding and ceremonial examples.

When these were exhausted, I felt an opportunity arose, to include other examples, masses, motets etc, etc, although The Passions,
St Matthew and St John, were not deemed to be appropriate, within this plan.

When even these will have run out, I have decided to continue, albeit with unfilled gaps, sometimes of weeks, to cover and publish each remaining, on the evening before the appropriate Sunday, or feast-day. The so called Christmas oratorio, with it multiple cycle, really, of individual cantatas, I intend to cover, probably at the end of 2023.

As a result, it will have been possible, over 5 years, to present, all of Bach’s choral music, except the Passions, which I shall include, in due course, more or less, on the days they were conceived, to be heard.

My manner of has been in the style of that much used and abused pamphlet form, the ‘program note’, where I have endeavoured to present, a short introduction, a practical, useable and understandable translation and a concise appraisal, aimed, I suppose, at those with more than just a passing relationship with Bach, and choral music, and who, perhaps, like me, are approaching a part of this composers out-put, that, in the main, has remained a misty mystery.

The writing style, spontaneous and contemporary, will, I hope, reflect the performances you choose to listen to, or, better still, attend.

In this demystification process, I have left alone, as far as I can, any musicological intrigue and indeed much potential discussion, as to the theological, ‘theme-of-the-day’ and also any and all discussion with reference to, inserted chorales tunes, their names and origin, and tried to focus attention, via an understanding, originating from the words,
-and the composer’s sometimes extraordinary response to these, towards a grasp and appreciation, through the sound and power of the music, to an experience, perhaps, for the first time, that might be appreciated,as  somewhere between engaging, and cosmic.

It is reasonably certain, that as I come to the end of this listening experiment, I shall continue, listening to these works, ceaselessly, going round and round again, as Bach himself did, a cantata, on a Sunday,
-or a Monday or a Tuesday, or even a Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday-
becoming a necessary and nourishing part, of a sustained musical lifestyle.

In that case, it is certain, that these initial somewhat thin and skeletal notes, might grow, as I hope will, into something more substantial and meaningful.

It seems clear to me, that, generally speaking, those who do not have a reasonable working relationship, with all of these, still, mostly-forgotten masterpieces, do not really have much of an understanding, of Bach, either the composer, or, indeed,
-and perhaps, more importantly-, Bach, the man.

Bach Cantatas
How to present so many works in a practical, yet meaningful order, has been a challenge.

In the end, I have decided, to list them, in the order, in which I posted them, this being, in the order in which Bach presented them, according to the church calendar.

I am leaving the original dates of posting intact, 2020 through to at least 2024, on each post. This will help search and identification, according to the month applicable to each Sunday and feast day, in the church calendar.

This monthly list will grow, as I import those cantatas yet to be included and already covered cantatas, that need to be imported, from elsewhere.

Please be patient if you are unable to find a particular cantata. It may be available, during your next visit.


2020 Cantatas

Sep 2020

Oct 2020

Nov 2020

Dec 2020

2021 Cantatas

JAN 2021

FEB 2021

MAR 2021

Apr 2021

May 2021

Jun 2021

Jul 2021

Aug 2021

Sep 2021

Oct 2021

Nov 2021

Dec 2021

2022 Cantatas

Jan 2022

Feb 2022

Mar 2022

Apr 2022

May 2022

Jun 2022

Jul 2022

Aug 2022

Sep 2022

Oct 2022

Nov 2022

Dec 2022

2023 Cantatas

Jan 2023

Feb 2023

Mar 2023

JUL 2023

AUG 2023

SEP 2023

2024 Cantatas

Jan 2024

Feb 2024

Mar 2024