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As always the opening choruses are of particular interest, for instance that of Cantata BWV47, a striking example of Bach’s skills in illustrating a text in music but also a highly complex composition in which the interplay between choir and orchestra is beautifully balanced. The soloists also have their share of fine moments on this instalment. Hana Blažíková, dubbed ‘an ideal Bach soprano’ in International Record Review on account of her performance on the previous Cantata volume, performs the charming and playful aria ‘Auch mit gedämpften, schwachen Stimmen’ with solo violin, while Robin Blaze and Peter Kooij – both veterans of this series – each have received a true display piece in the form of the two arias of BWV27.
‘With Suzuki you can hear Bach's heart beat...’ (International Record Review on Volume 40, BIS-SACD-1671).
Johann Sebastian Bach: Schwingt freudig euch empor, BWV 36
Schwingt freudig euch empor (Chorus)
Chorale: Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland (Soprano, Alto)
Aria: Die Liebe zieht mit sanften Schritten (Tenor)
Chorale: Zwingt die Saiten in Cythara (Chorus)
Aria: Willkommen, werter Schatz! (Bass)
Chorale: Der du bist dem Vater gleich (Tenor)
Aria: Auch mit gedampften, schwachen Stimmen (Soprano)
Chorale: Lob sei Gott, dem Vater, ton (Chorus)
Johann Sebastian Bach: Wer sich selbst erhohet, der soll erniedriget werden, BWV 47
Wer sich selbst erhohet (Chorus)
Aria: Wer ein wahrer Christ will heissen (Soprano)
Recitative: Der Mensch ist Kot, Stank, Asch und Erde (Bass)
Aria: Jesu, beuge doch mein Herze (Bass)
Chorale: Der zeitlichen Ehrn will ich gern entbehrn (Chorus)
Johann Sebastian Bach: Wer weiss, wie nahe mir mein Ende!, BWV 27
Chorale and Recitative: Wer weiss, wie nahe mir mein Ende (Soprano, Alto, Tenor)
Recitative: Mein Leben hat kein ander Ziel (Tenor)
Aria: Wilkommen! will ich sagen (Alto) (harpsichord obligato)
Recitative: Ach, wer doch schon im Himmel war! (Soprano)
Aria: Gute Nacht, du Weltgetummel! (Bass)
Chorale: Welt, ade! Ich bin dein mude (Chorus)
Wer weiss, wie nahe mir mein Ende!, BWV 27: Aria: Wilkommen! will ich sagen (organ obligato)
“Suzuki's [Bach series] was initially rather restrained and reverential. No longer...the generous acoustic of the Chapel, reverberating for nearly four seconds, doesn't dull the crisp articulation...another superb contribution to Suzuki's Bach project.”
“Robin Blaze's sprightly and generous singing leaves us relishing the prospect of our passing...we are treated [in BWV47] to more of Hana Blažíkova, a Bach soprano of engaging disposition.”
“Suzuki achieves that rarest of balancing acts in Bach: a sense of spiritual gravitas, but lightness of touch; the delight in complexity, but absolute transparency of texture; rhetorical awareness of the text, but musical plain speaking. The solo team here is one of the best line-ups we've had for a while.”
“the performances here do not disappoint. There's particularly crisp, clear choral singing in the contrapuntal opening chorus of Wer sich selbst erhöhet...The delicate solo violin playing and warm oboe d'amore obbligato deserve high praise and the balance of lyricism and rhythmic drive is well judged throughout.”
“this 47th volume of his Bach Cantata Cycle is as good as any of its predecessors. There are plenty of surprises here too; in fact Suzuki and Bach make a good team. They are both endlessly inventive musicians, but each has a real sensitivity to the necessary balance between continuity and innovation in liturgical music.”
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