Saturday, December 25, 2010
Observing Christmas With Bach
"Weihnachtsoratorium" Cantata No. 1 (Am ersten Weihanchtsfeiertage) BWV246 for choir, soloists, 2 trumpets, timpani, 2 transverse flutes, 2 oboes, 2 oboe d'amore, strings, and basso continuo
No 1. Coro: "Jauchzet, frohlocket!"
Performed by Concentus Musicus Wien & the Arnold Schoenberg Chor
Featuring Christine Schafer, soprano
Bernarda Fink, alto
Werner Gura, tenor
Gerald Finley, bass
Christian Gerthaher, bass
Directed by Nicholas Harnoncourt
*Recorded in 2007
**The Christmas Oratorio (German: Weihnachtsoratorium) BWV 248, is an oratorio by Johann Sebastian Bach intended for performance in church during the Christmas season. It was written for the Christmas season of 1734 incorporating music from earlier compositions, including three secular cantatas written during 1733 and 1734 and a now lost church cantata, BWV 248a. The date is confirmed in Bach's autograph manuscript. The next performance was not until 17 December 1857 by the Sing-Akademie zu Berlin under Eduard Grell. The Christmas Oratorio is a particularly sophisticated example of the parody technique. The author of the text is unknown, although a likely collaborator was Christian Friedrich Henrici (Picander).