Man singet mit Freuden vom Sieg, BWV 149

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Man singet mit Freuden vom Sieg (There are joyful songs of victory), BWV 149, is a church cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach.

History and text[edit]

Bach composed the cantata in Leipzig for the feast of St. Michael and first performed on 29 September 1728 or 1729.[1] The prescribed readings for the day were Revelation 12, verses 7–12, and Matthew 18, verses 1–11. The work draws on text from Psalm 118, verses 15–16, and the third stanza of Martin Schalling's chorale "Herzlich lieb hab ich dich, o Herr". The librettist was Picander, who published the text in his collection Ernstschertzhaffte und satyrische Gedichte.[2]

Scoring and structure[edit]

The cantata is scored for four vocal soloists (soprano, alto, tenor, and bass), a four-part choir, three trumpets, timpani, three oboes, bassoon, two violins, violone, and basso continuo.[3]

It has seven movements:

  1. Chorus: Man singet mit Freuden vom Sieg in den Hütten der Gerechten
  2. Aria (bass): Kraft und Stärke sei gesungen
  3. Recitative (alto): Ich fürchte mich
  4. Aria (soprano): Gottes Engel weichen nie
  5. Recitative (tenor): Ich danke dir
  6. Duet aria (alto and tenor): Seid wachsam, ihr heiligen Wächter
  7. Chorale: Ach Herr, lass dein lieb Engelein


The opening chorus was adapted from the secular cantata Was mir behagt, ist nur die muntre Jagd, BWV 208. Bach exchanged the horns of the original piece for trumpets and transposed the music from F major to D major, creating "a perfect stage for either a rallying cry for battle or an anticipation of the triumph of good over evil".[1] It is a combined da capo and ritornello form, with a repeated instrumental section.[4]

The bass aria is in B minor, with two accompanying low instrumental melodies.[1][4]

The secco alto recitative lacks harmonic stability.[1]

The soprano aria is dancing with a string accompaniment with parallel thirds and sixths.[1] It is stylistically similar to a minuet, and is formally an adapted ternary structure.[4]

The tenor recitative is secco and in common time.[1] It ends with an ascending phrase meant to represent an appeal to heaven.[4]

The duet aria includes a prominent bassoon part.[1] It employs canon technique and a repeated interrupted cadence.[4]

The work ends with a harmonically complex four-part setting of the chorale.[1] The same stanza of Schalling's chorale is also placed at the end of Bach's St John Passion, in the works first and fourths version.


  • Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir, Ton Koopman. J.S. Bach: Complete Cantatas Vol. 20. Antoine Marchand, 2003.
  • Bach Collegium Japan, Masaaki Suzuki. J.S. Bach: Cantatas Vol. 50. BIS, 2011.
  • Gächinger Kantorei Stuttgart / Bach-Collegium Stuttgart, Helmuth Rilling. Die Bach Kantate Vol. 53. Hänssler, 1984.
  • Holland Boys Choir / Netherlands Bach Collegium, Pieter Jan Leusink. Bach Edition Vol. 9. Brilliant Classics, 1999.
  • Monteverdi Choir / English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner. Bach Cantatas Vol. 7. Soli Deo Gloria, 2000.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "Cantata BWV 149 "Man singet mit Freuden vom Sieg"". Bach Choir of Bethlehem. Retrieved 26 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Cantata BWV 149". bach-cantatas. Retrieved 6 June 2013. 
  3. ^ "BWV 149". University of Alberta. Retrieved 6 June 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Mincham, Julian. "Chapter 44 BWV 149". jsbachcantatas. Retrieved 6 June 2013. 

External links[edit]