Bach. Cantata. Movements 1 to 4.

Cantata Movements 1-4

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  • Created by: tom reade
  • Created on: 15-05-11 13:30

Bach. Movement 1. Overview

Ritornello form - the use of shortened repetitions as a structural device between contrasting episodes.

The Cantus Firmus is played in Canon by the trumpet and oboes (the pre-existing melody of movement 7). 

The choir declaims the text in a succession of imitative entrieds (often canoic in style, but not strictly canon. 

Bellow this the Ritornello emerges frequently creating contrapuntal complexity

The music is mainly in G minor but modulates to related keys (reflecting the solemn text).

Most of the main sections end with a hemiola (rhythemic device).Highlights the cadences. Typical of Baroque.

Long Tonic pedal as a calming effect.

Chordal intrusment plays the continuo figured bass.

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Bach. Movement 2. Recitative.Over-view

The Recitative is speech like singing which makes the words almost entirely syllabic. 

The text flows at a much faster rate. 

Rhythms reflect the natural speech patterns.

Accompaniment is purely supportive.

Modulates rapidly through related keys. (Bar 2, F minor, Bar 4, C minor.).

Text translation "oh the pain, oh the misery".

Free tempo.

Lurid text expressed through detached melodic fragments to highlight the sighs and dramatic expression. Angular melodies with huge leaps. (Bar 2, diminished 7th on misery).

Extreme dissonance.

Modulation to foreign keys.  

2 of 4

Bach. Movement 3. Chorale. Over-view.

Tonality of B flat major.

The chorale tune was already 100 years old when Bach included it in Cantata number 48.

Melody is purely diatonic.

It is transformed by Bach's chromatic harmonisation. (Bar 2 beat 2, diminished 7th chord.).

Instruments double up with 4-part-choir and congregation in octaves.


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Bach. Movement 4. De Capo Aria. Over-view.

Starts in the key of E flat major.

Obbligato Ario. This is a song with an equally important (obligatory) instrumental solo. 

It is in Ritornello form.

There are two main sections. Section one ends in the dominant B flat major. Section two moves straight to C minor then passes though a number of closely related keys.

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i love you a little bit!


i love you a little bit more (as a brother...)

good revision there. not very detailed though... lol



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