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Bach: Christmas Cantatas Vol 36

Aradia Ensemble
CD  |  Classical  |  01 Oct 2005
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Bach: Christmas Cantatas Vol 36 | CD

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In composing his cycles of cantatas for the Lutheran church year, Johann Sebastian Bach naturally devoted some of his most joyous music to the Advent season. The prevailing mood is evident even from the titles of the three works featured on this disc: "Schwingt freudig euch empor," BWV 36 (Ring joyfully out to the stars on high); "Bereitet die Wege, bereitet die Bahn!," BWV 132 (Make ready the ways, make ready the path!); and "Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland," BWV 61 (Now come, Saviour of the peoples). Toronto's Aradia Ensemble, led by Kevin Mallon, experiments with different period performance style options on this thoroughly enjoyable recording. Throughout, a single instrumentalist performs on each part, transforming the works into chamber music. On "Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland," a small chorus is used, but "Schwingt freudig" is even more intimate, with one vocalist per part in the choruses. Naturally, the results are very different from what we usually hear: less robust, perhaps, but scarcely less spiritual. The approach, which puts every performer in the full spotlight, requires especially fine musicianship. This recording does not disappoint; most of the vocal soloists, especially soprano Teri Dunn and countertenor Matthew White, are more than up to the task, and Wash McClain plays the oboe d'amore solos with beautiful, expressive tone.


An instrumental suite of Bach's treatments of the "Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland" chorale is also included, and it's all recorded with a nice, churchlike touch of resonance to the sound. At a budget price, this is a lovely chance to hear Bach's cantatas in an intriguingly different way.


Title: Bach: Christmas Cantatas Vol 36

Format: CD

Release Date: 01 Oct 2005

Artist: Aradia Ensemble

Sku: 2076563

Catalogue No: 8554825

Category: Classical



No. 1, Schwingt freudig euch empor

No. 2, Aria: Die Liebe zieht mit sanften Schritten

No. 3, Aria: Sei mir willkommen, werter Schatz

No. 4, Aria: Auch mit gedämpften, schwachen Stimmen

No. 5, Choral: Wie bin ich doch so herzlich froh

No. 1, Aria: Bereitet die Wege, bereitet die Bahn

No. 2, Recitativo: Willst du dich Gottes Kind

No. 3, Aria: Wer bist du?

No. 4, Recitativo: Ich will, mein Gott

No. 5, Aria: Christi Glieder, ach bedenket

No. 6, Choral: Ertöt uns durch deine Güte

[Unspecified] Instrumental Suite: Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland

No. 1, Ouverture

No. 2, Recitativo: Der Heiland, ist gekommen

No. 3, Aria: Jesu, komm zu deiner Kirche

No. 4, Recitativo: Siehe, ich stehe vor der Tür

No. 5, Aria: Öffne dich, mein ganzes Herze

No. 6, Amen: Komm du schöne Freudenkrone

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