„Entfliehet, ihr Sorgen“ – Bach celebration cantatas BWV 205a & 249a
Both works were written during Bach’s time in Leipzig and only the text survived. It was possible, however, to reconstruct them from preserved drafts and revisions. The Coronation cantata BWV 205a with its Blast Lärmen, ihr Feinde! Verstärket die Macht (Enemies, blow the alarm! Strengthen your forces) alludes to the War of the Polish Succession, which was fought between France and the Habsburgs for the Polish throne after the death of Augustus the Strong. The cantata is largely derived from The contented Aeolus (BWV 205).
The Shepherd’s cantata, with the exception of the recitative completed by Grychtolik for the CD, is derived from the early version of the aforementioned Easter Oratorio (BWV 249). The work was staged in 1725 for the birthday of Duke Christian von Sachsen-Weißenfels at Neu-Augustusburg palace and tells the tale of two shepherdesses who meet two shepherds on their way to celebrate the Duke’s birthday and begin flirting with them.
‘With the reconstruction of the Shepherd’s cantata, a new audience can now experience one of J. S. Bach’s celebratory operas. In this work, which later became the Easter Oratorio, Bach demonstrates his little-known skills as an opera composer – it is like a resurrected cathedral of music,’ explains Alexander Grychtolik.
Soloists on the recording are the soprano Miriam Feuersinger, the tenor Daniel Johannsen, as well as Elvira Bill (alto) and Stephan MacLeod (bass).
The extensive project was made possible by funding from the Funk Foundation. This is now the second collaboration between the foundation and the ensemble Deutsche Hofmusik from 2017, following on from the CD Angenehme Melodei, which is also dedicated to J.S. Bach and is a world première recording. As before, the music was recorded in the Jesus-Christus-Kirche in Berlin-Dahlem.
Further information on the conductor Alexander Grychtolik and the ensemble Deutsche Hofmusik can be found here.
Various radio shows and podcasts have also reported on the project.