Ich freue mich in dir, BWV 133
|Ich freue mich in dir
|Chorale cantata by J. S. Bach|
Thomaskirche, Leipzig 1885
|Occasion||Third Day of Christmas|
|Performed||27 December 1724Leipzig:|
|Chorale||"Ich freue mich in dir
by Caspar Ziegler
|Vocal||SATB choir and solo|
Ich freue mich in dir (I rejoice in You), BWV 133,[a] is a church cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach. He composed the Christmas cantata in Leipzig in 1724 for the Third Day of Christmas and first performed it on 27 December 1724. The chorale cantata is based on the 1697 hymn by Caspar Ziegler.
History and words
Bach wrote the chorale cantata in his second year as Thomaskantor in Leipzig, as part of his second cantata cycle, for the Third Day of Christmas. The prescribed readings for the feast day were from the Epistle to the Hebrews, Christ is higher than the angels, (Hebrews 1:1–14) and the prologue of the Gospel of John, also called Hymn to the Word (John 1:1–14). The cantata is based on the chorale in four stanzas Ich freue mich in dir (1697) by Caspar Ziegler. It is one of the newest of the chorales which served as a base for the second annual cycle, whereas Bach otherwise preferred the beloved hymns of poets such as Martin Luther and Paul Gerhardt. The unknown poet of the cantata text kept the first and the last stanza, and paraphrased the inner stanzas closely to a sequence of recitative and aria. The text has no reference to the readings nor to the feast of John the Evangelist. It expresses the intimate joy of the individual believer about the presence of God in the Jesus child.
Scoring and structure
The cantata in six movements is scored for four vocal soloists (soprano, alto, tenor, and bass), a four-part choir, cornett to double the chorale melody, two oboes d'amore, two violins, viola, and basso continuo.
- Chorus: Ich freue mich in dir
- Aria (alto): Getrost! es faßt ein heil'ger Leib
- Recitative (tenor): Ein Adam mag sich voller Schrecken
- Aria (soprano): Wie lieblich klingt es in den Ohren
- Recitative (bass): Wohlan, des Todes Furcht und Schmerz
- Chorale: Wohlan, so will ich mich
The chorale is sung on a variant of a melody of O Gott, du frommer Gott. This melody was probably new to Bach who noted it in the score of the Sanctus, which he also composed for Christmas in 1724 and later made part of his Mass in B minor. The cornetto plays the cantus firmus with the soprano, the oboes play with violin II and viola, whereas violin 1 "shines above the rest". The lower voices are set mostly in homophony, with the exception of expressing "Der große Gottessohn" (the great son of God). John Eliot Gardiner summarizes: "I find it hard to imagine music that conveys more persuasively the essence, the exuberance and the sheer exhilaration of Christmas than the opening chorus of BWV 133".
While Bach's Weimar cantata Christen, ätzet diesen Tag, BWV 63, expressed a communal joy in two choral movements and two duets, a sequence of four movements for a single voice reflects the joy of the individual believer. The alto aria is accompanied by the two oboi d'amore, the soprano aria by the strings, changing from an even time in the outer sections to a siciliano in the middle section. The tenor recitative is marked adagio twice, once to stress "Der allerhöchste Gotte kehrt selber bei uns ein" (Almighty God Himself here visits us), finally to quote from the chorale in both words and music "Wird er ein kleines Kind und heißt mein Jesulein" (He has become a little child and is called my little Jesus). The cantata is closed by a four-part setting of the last chorale stanza.
- J.S. Bach: Cantatas BWV 122 & BWV 133, Michael Gielen, Wiener Kammerchor, Vienna State Opera Orchestra, Margit Opawsky, Hilde Rössel-Majdan, Waldemar Kmentt, Harald Hermann, Vanguard Bach Guild 1952
- Die Bach Kantate Vol. 64, Helmuth Rilling, Gächinger Kantorei, Bach-Collegium Stuttgart, Arleen Augér, Doris Soffel, Aldo Baldin, Philippe Huttenlocher, Hänssler 1980
- J.S. Bach: Das Kantatenwerk – Sacred Cantatas Vol. 7, Gustav Leonhardt, Knabenchor Hannover, Concentus Musicus Wien, soloist of the Knabenchor Hannover, René Jacobs, Marius van Altena, Max van Egmond, Teldec 1983
- Bach Edition Vol. 4 – Cantatas Vol. 1, Pieter Jan Leusink, Holland Boys Choir, Netherlands Bach Collegium, Ruth Holton, Sytse Buwalda, Knut Schoch, Bas Ramselaar, Brilliant Classics 1999
- J.S. Bach: Complete Cantatas Vol. 13, Ton Koopman, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir, Deborah York, Franziska Gottwald, Paul Agnew, Klaus Mertens, Antoine Marchand 2000
- Bach Cantatas Vol. 15: New York / For the 3rd Day of Christmas, John Eliot Gardiner, Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, Katharine Fuge, Robin Tyson, James Gilchrist, Peter Harvey, Soli Deo Gloria 2000
- J.S. Bach: Christmas Cantatas from Leipzig, Philippe Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale Gent, Dorothee Mields, Ingeborg Danz, Mark Padmore, Peter Kooy, Harmonia Mundi 2001
- J.S. Bach: Christmas Cantatas from Leipzig, Philippe Herreweghe, Collegium Vocale Gent, Carolyn Sampson, Ingeborg Danz, Mark Padmore, Sebastian Noack, Harmonia Mundi France 2002
- J.S. Bach: Cantatas Vol. 31, Masaaki Suzuki, Bach Collegium Japan, Yukari Nonoshita, Robin Blaze, Gerd Türk, Peter Kooy, BIS 2004
- "BWV" is Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis, a thematic catalogue of Bach's works.
- Dellal, Pamela. "BWV 133 – Ich freue mich in dir". Emmanuel Music. Retrieved 20 December 2014.
- Dürr, Alfred (1981). Die Kantaten von Johann Sebastian Bach (in German). 1 (4 ed.). Deutscher Taschenbuchverlag. pp. 133–136. ISBN 3-423-04080-7.
- "Ich freue mich in dir / Text and Translation of Chorale". bach-cantatas.com. 2003. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
- Wolff, Christoph (2000). "Chorale Cantatas from the cycle of the Leipzig church cantatas, 1724–25 (III)" (PDF). p. 8. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
- "Chorale Melodies used in Bach's Vocal Works / O Gott, du frommer Gott". bach-cantatas.com. 2003. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
- Gardiner, John Eliot (2006). "Cantatas for the Third Day of Christmas / St Bartholomew’s, New York" (PDF). bach-cantatas.com. p. 6. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
- Mincham, Julian (2010). "Chapter 30 BWV 133 Ich freue mich in dir / I find my delight in thee.". jsbachcantatas.com. Retrieved 15 December 2011.
- Ich freue mich in dir, BWV 133: Scores at the International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP)
- Ich freue mich in dir BWV 133; BC A 16 / Chorale cantata (3rd Christmas Day) Leipzig University
- Cantata BWV 133 Ich freue mich in dir: history, scoring, sources for text and music, translations to various languages, discography, discussion, bach-cantatas website
- BWV 133 Ich freue mich in dir: English translation, University of Vermont
- BWV 133 Ich freue mich in dir: text, scoring, University of Alberta