Laß, Fürstin, laß noch einen Strahl, BWV 198
|Laß, Fürstin, laß noch einen Strahl|
|secular cantata by J.S. Bach|
Paulinerkirche, Leipzig, 17th-century lithograph
|Related||St Mark Passion and BWV 244a|
|Performed||17 October 1727Leipzig –|
|Movements||11 in two parts (7, 4)|
|Cantata text||Johann Christoph Gottsched|
|Vocal||SATB soloists and choir|
Laß, Fürstin, laß noch einen Strahl (Let, Princess, let still one more glance) is a secular cantata as a funeral ode by Johann Sebastian Bach, first performed on 17 October 1727. In Wolfgang Schmieder's catalogue of Bach's works it is BWV 198.
History, text, scoring
Bach composed the cantata at the request of the University of Leipzig as a funeral ode for Christiane Eberhardine, wife of August II the Strong, and first performed on 17 October 1727 in the Universitätskirche. The text was written by Johann Christoph Gottsched, professor of philosophy and poetry. Divided into 11 movements, the first seven preceded the funeral oration. Set in the Italian style with recitatives and arias, for four soloists, four-part choir, two flutes, two oboes d'amore, two violins, viola, two violas da gamba, two lutes and basso continuo. Bach himself directed from the harpsichord.
The text is purely secular, proclaiming how the kingdom is in shock over the princess' death, how magnificent she was, and how sadly she will be missed. Sacred elements pertaining to salvation and the afterlife are absent. Bach, however, as was his custom, included a cryptic reference to salvation in the music. The first movement of the second section Der Ewigkeit saphirnes Haus ("Eternity's sapphiric house"), which was performed following the oration, contains underlying elements of the first movement of the cantata BWV 56, Ich will den Kreuzstab gerne tragen ("I want to bear the cross") which Bach had composed one year earlier. The measures 70–75 contain a direct quote (played by the oboe) of the bass solo voice in measures 91–98 from BWV 56 where the text is Der führet mich nach meinen Plagen zu Gott, in das gelobte Land ("which leads me to God in the promised land after all my tribulation").
- J.S. Bach: Cantata BWV 198, Jürgen Jürgens, Monteverdi-Chor, Concerto Amsterdam, Rotraud Hansmann, Helen Watts, Kurt Equiluz, Max van Egmond, Telefunken, 1966
- J.S. Bach: Das Kantatenwerk – Sacred Cantatas Vol. 10, Knabenchor Hannover (Chorus Master: Heinz Hennig) & Collegium Vocale Gent (Chorus Master: Philippe Herreweghe), Leonhardt Consort, Boy soprano Jan Patrick O'Farrell, René Jacobs, John Elwes, Harry van der Kamp, conductor Gustav Leonhardt, Teldec 1989
- Bach Edition Vol. 14 – Cantatas Vol. 7, Pieter Jan Leusink, Holland Boys Choir, Netherlands Bach Collegium, Marjon Strijk, Sytse Buwalda, Knut Schoch, Bas Ramselaar, Brilliant Classics 2000
- J.S. Bach: Complete Cantatas Vol. 4, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir, Caroline Stam, Elisabeth von Magnus, Paul Agnew, Klaus Mertens, conductor Ton Koopman, Antoine Marchand
- Laß, Fürstin, laß noch einen Strahl, BWV 198: Free scores at the International Music Score Library Project
- Details and links from bach-cantatas.com
- Original German text
- English translation of the text
- Entries for BWV 198 on WorldCat