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On-line Book Review

YO TOMITA


FRONT COVER
OVERVIEW
Dimension 31.0 x 24.2 x 0.1 cm
TITLE J. S. Bach. Aria. Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn. Für Sopran, zwei Violinen, Viola und Continuo. For Soprano, two Violins, Viola and Continuo. BWV 1127.Erstausgabe / First Edition. Hrsg. von / Edited by Michael Maul. Urtext der Neuen Bach-Ausgabe. Partitur / Score.
PUBL. DETAILS Kassel: Bärenreiter-Verlag (2005) vii pp text, 1p facs, 4pp music. Paperback, Euro 17,95.
ISMN M-006-53062-5 (BA 5246)
TO ORDER Bärenreiter-Verlag, Heinrich-Schütz-Allee 35, D-34131 Kassel, Germany.
SUMMARY
DESCRIPTION First edition of this newly rediscovered composition by J. S. Bach (1713).
READERSHIP Scholars and students
RESEARCH 
CONTRIBUTION
It sheds light on Bach's life in Weimar.
FRONT COVER
OVERVIEW
Dimension 32.0 x 20.5 x 0.8 cm
TITLE Bach, Johann Sebastian Bach: Aria. »Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn«, BWV 1127Einleitung von Michael Maul. Geleitwort von Christopf Wolff.  (= Documenta Musicologica, II/33) [= Faksimile-Reihe Bachscher Werke und Schriftstücke, Neue Folge].
PUBL. DETAILS Kassel: Bärenreiter-Verlag (2005) 8pp facsimile; 15pp text. With CD. Hardback, Euro 49,95.
ISBN 3-7618-1780-X
TO ORDER Bärenreiter-Verlag, Heinrich-Schütz-Allee 35, D-34131 Kassel, Germany.
SUMMARY
DESCRIPTION Colour facsimile of this newly rediscovered composition by J. S. Bach (1713), with CD containing world-premiere recording by John Eliot Gardiner.
READERSHIP Scholars and students
RESEARCH 
CONTRIBUTION
It sheds light on Bach's life in Weimar

T his is the first edition of music and the facsimile of this work, BWV 1127, the aria “Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn’ ihn”, which is not among the previously known works of J. S. Bach. It was discovered by Michael Maul in May 2005 in the Herzogin Anna Amalia Bibliothek, which was only eight months after the tragic fire there that destroyed the bulk of the music collection that housed precious materials for Bach research.

This aria is apparently composed on the occasion of Bach’s employer, Duke Wilhelm Ernst of Saxe-Weimar’s 53rd birthday. As few details is known about Bach’s life in Weimar, this is a very significant find in several ways: as a piece of historical artefact, it shows much about the context of the composition and the manner in which Bach took his part in preparing this ceremonious work. The facsimile reveals a lot about this. From the musical side, one would learn much about Bach’s approach to the genre of strophic aria, which is unique among Bach’s vocal works. It certainly offers to scholars further opportunities for scrutiny.

This edition is clean, and well laid out in 4 pages. It has the editor’s preface in both German and English in which he explains the background of the piece and a few points on the performance in two pages, which is adequate. While Bach wrote out the first verse only in his score, Maul also provides verses 10 and 12 in his edition, which he recommends on the ground of the contrast of characters. In the facsimile, Maul discusses his spectacular find as well as the background of this composition in greater depth. The interested reader is recommended to refer to his extended article “'Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn' -- Eine neu aufgefundene Aria von Johann Sebastian Bach” published in Bach-Jahrbuch, vol. 91 (2005), pp. 7-34.
  
clean and well laid out

 

The quality of the facsimile reproduction is excellent. With colour, it is so much easier to distinguish the notes from the stains. With the naked eyes one can hardly see the dots that make up the colour print. Only when it is magnified (see the image below, which is scanned at 600 dpi), you will see how it is made.

 

  
excellent reproduction

It is worth adding that the facsimile edition comes with the première recording by Sir John Eliot Gardiner and the English Baroque Soloists, with Elin Manahan Thomas (soprano). This is a very charming performance, lasting for about 12 minutes.

Published online on 10 May 2006