Label: Archiv Produktion - 2722 016 • Format: 8x, Vinyl LP, Compilation + Box • Country: Germany • Genre: Classical • Style: Baroque
The variations were prepared as a showpiece Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 Bach's entry as fourteenth member of Mizler's Music Society in Leipzig in The original printed edition ofin which One Week - Various - Definitely 1 - Its Dance Hit 2000 one line of the canon was marked in the first three variations, was published by Balthasar Schmid in Nuremberg. In this later version Bach modified the order of the variations, moving the fifth variation into a central position, and wrote out all the parts in full, with some minor revisions to the score.
In English translation this reads . In BWV a, the variations occur in the modified order 1, 2, 5, 3, 4. Lorenz Christoph Mizler. To mark his admission he not only presented a version of the Canonic Variations, but also a portrait by Elias Gottlob Haussmann in which Bach holds a copy of his canon triplex a 6 voci BWV towards Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 viewer.
The Canonic Variations are V on the Christmas Hymn " Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her ", for which text and melody, both by Martin Lutherwere published in . There are also similarities with several of the Goldberg Variations, notably the third and thirteenth, with shared motifs, keyboard technique and general structure. In the case of Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 earlier harpsichord work, however, the variations are written over a fixed bass line, while BWV is based on a melody.
During this period Bach had been criticized vociferously by the Danish composer Johann Adolph Scheibe for producing music that was too old-fashioned, abstract and artificial. Scheibe had described Bach's output Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 "altogether too much art" and had referred to the canons as outmoded follies "Thorheiten". However, despite the logic of the canon that underlies the Canonic Variations, Bach succeeded in producing a work which, far from being abstract and severe, was imbued with an affect of "beauty" and "naturalness", quite modern for its time and in keeping with the spirit of galante music.
Combining complex counterpoint with the spiritual associations of Advent and Christmas, Bach's harmony and keyboard technique produce a musical style "at times strangely new, at others very approachable" yet "elusive enough to prompt admirers to search outside music for suitable expressive metaphor. Various stylistic elements in the Canonic Variations recall the compositions of Bach's predecessors and contemporaries. The running figures in the first variation can be found in Toccata No.
The galant figures of the free line in the third variation are similar to those promoted by Joachim Quantz in his treatise on flute playing.
The elaborate ornamentation of the fourth variation uses many devices from his son Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach 's treatise on keyboard technique; the final pedal point harks back to those of the chorale preludes of Dieterich Buxtehudefor example in his setting of "Durch Adams Fall ist ganz verdebt", Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 The walking pedal-bass beneath the canon at the beginning of the Einige Canonische Veränderungen Über Das Weihnachtlied Vom Himmel Hoch variation V similar to Georg Friedrich Kaufmann 's setting of "Vom Himmel hoch" in his Harmonische Seelenlust c.
Butler has examined the surviving manuscripts in detail to determine the manner in which the Canonic Variations were composed and published. A similar process was determined by Breig The only sources were Balthasar Schmid's engraving and Bach's autograph manuscript, a much larger collection referred to as P In addition there were further manuscripts of Bach, used for rough working and sketches, which have not survived.
Only inafter a year had elapsed, was Variatio IV engraved. The Canonic Variations seem to have been composed, not One - Various - Commercial Collection 331 in their final form, in or at least for the New Year's Fair of In the engraved version Einige Canonische Veränderungen Über Das Weihnachtlied Vom Himmel Hoch first I Dont Wanna Cry - Pam Hall - Bet You Dont Know variations, written in annotated form, could not be performed directly from the copy, since only one part of the canon was V, the other having to be worked out "with the pen at home".
For variations 1—3, the annotation of canons involved suppressing the second canonic entry, so that the scoring becomes a puzzle, sometimes referred to as an "enigma" or a "riddle". Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 Breig speculates, it might have been that the first three variations initially comprised some form of presentation; one suitable festive occasion, appropriate for such a performance, would have been the baptism of Bach's grandson Johann August, celebrated in early December The engraved version was also probably devised to minimize page turns and economize on space, so the combination of these factors speaks against any particular significance in the order of the movements.
It is also not clear which of the remaining two Einige Canonische Veränderungen Über Das Weihnachtlied Vom Himmel Hoch was prepared specially for Mizler's Society. The exuberant Canon with Inversions Variatio V builds up to a cumulative climax, but originally did not contain the passing reference to the BACH motif in its closing bars. In the autograph manuscript, it becomes the central variation, comparable to the role played by the central large-scale sixteenth Goldberg variation.
This variation in three separate sections was engraved after variations 1—3; it might have been intended to be placed between the 2nd and 3rd variations; and with four variations now at Bach's disposal, that marked a new stage in Bach's development, with the flourish in Variatio V starting to gain a sense of finality. The calmer Augmentation Canon Variatio IVon the other hand, similar to the thirteenth Goldberg variation, has a clear reference to the BACH motif in its 39th bar, its anguished harmonies resolved peacefully by the final pedal point.
Because of continual reworkings, it is now believed that Bach never intended there to be a final fixed version. In particular, commentators have pointed out that although the order of the variations in the autograph version gives it a certain aesthetic symmetry, the order in the engraved version might be more appropriate for performance. During a period of roughly 20 years of research, the musicologist Tatlow has developed her own theory of numerology and proportion with reference to Bach's compositions.
In the first part of Tatlow's book, there is an account of the eighteenth century from the viewpoint of musical theory and theology. The second part illustrates specific works or collections of works, including a detailed and lengthy discussion of the five variations in BWV with six carefully tabulated figures. Below are the first, second and last fifteenth verses of the Christmas hymn Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her by Martin Lutherpublished inwith the English translation from of Catherine Winkworth.
The two part canon is derived from the first and last lines of the cantus firmus. Despite the "enigmatic" notation for the printed version in the canon, Bach's musical Schülerliebe - Robert Long - Über Kurz Oder Lang gives the impression of simplicity, gracefulness and beauty: no disharmony disturbs the pervading mood of peacefulness.
The falling scales have been interpreted as representing Christ's descent from Heaven to Earth, a reference to the text of the last verse. The repetition in the text "glad tidings of great joy" iines 2—3, verse 1 provides a similar repetition for the music in the canon.
The involved semiquaver passages with octave imitations, along with the slowly progressing harmonies, create an effect of resonant and echoing solemnity. Bach avoids monotony and lack of pace by modulating into the minor, followed by a brief G-major passage in the third line of the cantus firmus. The graceful introductory ritornello is recapitulated before the last line of the pedal cantus firmus, played in the tenor register with an 8' stop. The two part canon is based on the first and second lines of the cantus firmus.
The compact imitative passagework follows the same scheme as Variatio I, but now with the canon at the fifth.
Again the antiquated "puzzle" notation for the canon in the printed version belies the modern "natural" style, with pleasant writing and graceful slurs, The imitation follows a different pattern, less expansive with a shorter scale, the two distinct motifs answering in turn. The secondary motive emerges from a semiquaver figures on parallel thirds: beginning McCoy Tyner - Horizon bar 9, these develop into a climax at the start of bar 16 in the cantus firmus.
The articulation of both the print Einige Canonische Veränderungen Über Das Weihnachtlied Vom Himmel Hoch autograph versions give a calmer impression of the semiquavers in Variatio II than in Variatio I. From the last quaver of bar 4, V start to appear in Variatio II; further on, Bach's suspensions in the descending scales also hint Hound Dog (Soundboard, May 1971) - Elvis* - A Legendary Performer (Box Set) the beginning of Variatio I.
As in Variatio I, there is a recapitulation of the opening ritornello—but now in syncopation with faster note values—before the last line of the cantus firmus, which is it at the same registration.
The spirited rising scales above the closing pedal point are in contrast with the falling arpeggios at the end of Variatio I. The ascending scales at the coda of Variatio II have been interpreted as departing angels or the rising up of the soul again a reference to the last verse of the text. Variatio III is a longer composition lasting 27 bars. With the lower tenor and bass voices of the canons functioning as an accompaniment, the tenor entry is again delayed by two crotchets.
The melody in the alto is marked cantabile in both the printed and autograph versions, with the soprano cantus firmus starting Seven - John Zorn - Chimeras even minims on the upbeat of bar 4. The canons themselves take the form of an ostinato ritornello derived form the first line of the cantus firmus with interludes when the cantus firmus recurs.
In contrast the musical material in the cantabile passagework contains a remarkable range of expressive figures typical of the modern galante style, with elaborate ornamentation, melismatic episodes and occasional dissonant appoggiaturasresembles the solo part in an aria. It also has similarities with the figurations in the solo line of the slow movement of the F minor harpsichord concerto, BWV Amongst the notable ornamentation are the "sighing" suspensions and the Untitled - The Gatecrashers - Revenge Of The Punter anapaests played rapidly on the beat.
Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 cantabile melody was Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 most significant difference between the printed and manuscript version. Bach's practice was freely to extemporise on ornamentation, so that no performance was the same. From all the versions of the second line of the chorale, the musical intensity increased, with shorter and more frequent motives: the most intense dissonance occurs at bar 19, coloured with a winding chromaticism.
Similarly to Variatio II, there is a modulation to the subdominant at bar in the pedal pointthe rising figures of the cantabile melody contrast with the falling motives in the canon. In bar 19, the chromaticism of the two canonic parts evoke the dragging of the cross another example of musical iconography ; the tensions of this episode are gradually resolved as the variation comes to a peaceful V harmonious close.
The canon at the seventh is scored in regular quavers with the voices in the tenor lower manual and the bass pedal. The "enigmatic" notation in the printed version simplifies the score, so that the cantabile part in the alto voice is easier to read. In this way Bach contrasts his antiquated way of notation with his modern style of writing. The upper manuals play the alto voice with the marking Cantabilewhile the soprano voice plays the cantus firmus in plain minims.
The lower voices in the canon, mostly play in intervals of thirds and sixths. Yearsley describes Bach's galante style—characteristic of the alto melody—as full of musical motives containing "spontaneous and unpredictable ornamentation". When simplified by the ornamentation, the basic notes in the "skeleton" are harmonious: it is the different ornaments—be they suspensions, trills or appoggiaturas —that cause disharmonies and create the expressive qualities of Bach's style.
The musical theorist Scheibe, formerly a student of Bach, referred to this modern musical style as delicate Sachen "delicate things". In the case of Variatio III, particularly Bach's ornamentation at the close of bars 26—27, Yearsley describes the new style as "marking the apogee of this natural elegance". Variatio IV is an augmentation canon in the soprano and bass manuals. The middle alto voice in Variatio IV now plays as an accompaniment, producing a remarkable motivic dialogue between the bass Comes canon.
Variatio IV takes the form of a newly composed melismatic arioso solo line in the right hand—elegant and elaborately ornamented—followed in the left hand by the Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 canon at half the speed.
Contrasting to the strict counterpoint of the steady bass part, the soprano voice adopts a modern expressive style, with Dont Let Me Walk This Road Alone - BeBe & CeCe Winans - Relationships added details, such as slursmordentsturns and appoggiaturasthat no longer conform to the rigid canon.
Between the two voices of the canon is a free alto line, with the cantus firmus in the tenor. The alto voice sometimes rises above the soprano line, creating a "halo" effect. All three manual parts derive from elements of the cantus firmus. When these occur in the elaborate and unusual soprano line, these provide apparently new ways of hearing the melody of the chorale. The freely composed alto voice of Variatio III is now dominated by the soprano Dux canon in the upper manual of Variatio IV, with its many elaborate motives derived from the tenor cantus firmus.
The main musical features in Variatio III—the ornamentation in the numerous motives and the lengthening phrases as if an imaginary vocal soloist is pausing between breaths—are intensified in Variatio IV.
After completing the soprano canon in bar 21, Bach produces a freely composed line with extraordinarily long phrases and the same elaborately embellished texture. As a contrast, Bach then punctuates the long ornate phrases by a handful of brief and accented baroque motives: in bar 23, there is an unmistakable reprise of the Dux canon in the soprano voice serving as a baroque ritornellobrief and fragmentary, with diminutio semiquavers instead of quavers ; there is an easily recognised quotation of the first lines of the cantus firmus, "Vom Himmel hoch da komm' ich her", in diminutio semiquavers instead of minims ; and there is a further reprise of the short ritornello in bar According to Williamsthe compositional style is similar to that of the thirteenth Goldberg VariationBWV including the elaborate ornamentation of the soprano melody.
The unusual change of instrumental timbre from harpsichord to organ fits unexpectedly well with Variatio IV. At the conclusion of Variatio IV, above the fourth line of the cantus firmus, the right hand weaves an elaborate coloratura line. In the middle parts the slower dragging Bach motif comes to a climax:  the alto voice plays the motif B-A-C-H in the last quavers of bar 39, and then, in the four semiquavers with upbeat on bars 40—41, the backwards or Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 motif H-C-A-B.
Bach further enhances the musical material by closing the final bars with the Comes canon of Variatio IV, essentially the same initial bars as the starting Dux canon of Variatio I. In this variation, the canon is the melody of the chorale itself. It has three sections, the first and second further subdivided in two, building up to a majestic and complex climax in the final bars of the third section.
In the Einige Canonische Veränderungen Über Das Weihnachtlied Vom Himmel Hoch section, the two manual parts play the chorale line by line in inverted canon over a walking bass continuo stamped out in the pedal, first at an interval of sixth and Spaceball Ricochet - Marc Bolan - Skycloaked Lord (.Of precious Light) Da Komm Ich Her Bwv 769 third.
In the second and third sections, the pedal part returns to the smooth lines of the cantus firmus. To an untrained ear, the voice-leading in the canon of Variatio IV is hardly noticeable and is imperceptible after 3 bars; the musical structure of the canons in Variatio V, however, is much clearer than any of the other variations.