Ihr werdet weinen und heulen

Ihr werdet weinen und heulen

BWV 48 performed by the Netherlands Bach Society
conducted by Shunske Sato
Walloon Church, Amsterdam

  • Menu
  • 1. Ihr werdet weinen und heulen (Chor)
  • 2. Wer sollte nicht in Klagen untergehen (Rezitativ)
  • 3. Kein Artzt ist außer dir zu finden (Arie)
  • 4. Du wirst mich nach der Angst (Rezitativ)
  • 5. Erholet euch (Arie)
  • 6. Ich hab dich einen Augenblick (Choral)

Behind the music


Suffering is certain, and salvation questionable

Bach’s most eccentric cantata movement gives us little to go on

In the words of St John, Jesus prefers images to explanations, to the great frustration of his disciples. After announcing his death and resurrection in obscure language, he tells them, “Most assuredly, I say to you that you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; and you will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will be turned into joy.” Clear? Far from it, and Bach underlines the disciples’ confusion in his opening chorus, using precisely the words that would have been read in the sermon in Bach’s day, just before the cantata was sung.

Bach makes ‘weinen und heulen’ (weeping and wailing) extremely painful, and that is precisely why this movement (and these contrasting themes) are so thoroughly Baroque. Anyone who is confused by the term ‘chromaticism’ – how semitone intervals play on the emotions – will find one of Bach’s clearest examples here. Just listen to the strings of notes grating up and down to ‘weinen’. Or feel how ‘heulen’ yearns for the next ‘safe’ note. The tension becomes almost too much to bear.

Around all this harmonic confusion, Bach strikes a cheerful tone: the long instrumental introduction later becomes the foundation for what appears to be a jubilant song. Midway through, the choir suddenly falls silent for a dramatic recitative (for Jesus himself?), which of course is once again full of harsh chromaticism.

Bach borrowed the words of the two subsequent arias with recitative from Christiana Mariana von Ziegler, who in later life was a key musician and poet in the Leipzig cultural scene. However, in order to fully accentuate the contrast between sorrow and joy, he made enthusiastic cuts in the text, so that Ziegler’s rhyming scheme and subtle Enlightenment imagery became unrecognisable. The impressive recorder solos from the start make way in the tenor aria for a trumpet, which is a perfect match for Jesus’s valiant sacrifice. The cantata closes with a calm chorale of thanks.

Ihr werdet weinen und heulen
Christiane Mariane von Ziegler
Jubilate Sunday
First performance
22 April 1725
15 April 1731

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Extra videos

Vocal texts


1. Chor
Ihr werdet weinen und heulen,
aber die Welt wird sich freuen.
Ihr aber werdet traurig sein.
Doch eure Traurigkeit
soll in Freude verkehret werden.

2. Rezitativ (Tenor)
Wer sollte nicht in Klagen untergehn,
wenn uns der Liebste wird entrissen?
Der Seelen Heil,
die Zuflucht kranker Herzen
acht' nicht auf unsre Schmerzen.

3. Arie (Alt)
Kein Arzt ist außer dir zu finden,
ich suche durch ganz Gilead;
wer heilt die Wunden meiner Sünden,
weil man hier keinen Balsam hat?
Verbirgst du dich, so muß ich sterben.
Erbarme dich, ach, höre doch!
Du suchest ja nicht mein Verderben,
wohlan, so hofft mein Herze noch.

4. Rezitativ (Alt)
Du wirst mich nach der Angst
auch wiederum erquicken;
so will ich mich zu deiner Ankunft schicken,
ich traue dem Verheißungswort,
daß meine Traurigkeit
in Freude soll verkehret werden.

5. Arie (Tenor)
Erholet euch, betrübte Sinnen,
ihr tut euch selber allzu weh.
Laßt von dem traurigen Beginnen,
eh ich in Tränen untergeh,
Mein Jesus läßt sich wieder sehen,
o Freude, der nichts gleichen kann:
wie wohl ist mir dadurch geschehen,
nimm, nimm mein Herz zum Opfer an.

6. Choral
Ich hab dich einen Augenblick,
o liebes Kind, verlassen;
sieh aber, sieh, mit großem Glück
und Trost ohn alle Maßen
will ich dir schon die Freudenkron
aufsetzen und verehren.
Dein kurzes Leid soll sich in Freud
und ewig Wohl verkehren.


1. Chorus
You shall weep and lament,
but the world shall rejoice.
And ye shall be sorrowful,
but your sorrow
shall be turned to joy.

2. Recitative
Who would not founder in lamentation,
when our beloved is snatched from us?
The salvation of our soul,
the refuge of sick hearts
pays no heed to our sorrow.

3. Aria
No physician but Thee can be found,
though I search through all Gilead;
who shall heal the wounds of my transgressions,
while there is no balm here for me?
If Thou dost hide, then I must perish.
Have mercy, ah, give ear!
For Thou dost not seek my destruction,
my heart, then, shall still harbour hope.

4. Recitative
When my fear is past,
Thou shalt again revive me;
thus shall I make ready for Thy coming,
I have trust in Thy promise,
that my sorrow
shall be turned into joy.

5. Aria
Recover now, O troubled feelings,
you cause yourselves too much grief.
Leave off your sorrowful beginnings,
before I founder in tears,
my Jesus shall appear again,
O joy without compare!
The happiness this causes me!
Accept my heart as sacrifice!

6. Chorale
I have but for a little while
forsaken you, dear child.
Behold, though, with great happiness and comfort beyond all measure
shall I put on you the crown of joy
and worship you;
your brief pain shall turn to joy
and eternal well-being.


  • Release date
    22 June 2023
  • Recording date
    27 May 2021
  • Location
    Walloon Church, Amsterdam
  • Direction
    Shunske Sato
  • Alto
    Alex Potter
  • Tenor
    Daniel Johannsen
  • Ripieno soprano
    Lauren Armishaw, Marta Paklar, Amelia Berridge
  • Ripieno alto
    Sofia Gvirts, Bernadett Nagy, Adriaan de Koster
  • Ripieno tenor
    Adriaan de Koster, Immo Schröder
  • Ripieno bass
    Matthew Baker, Pierre-Guy Le Gall White, Michiel Meijer
  • Violin 1
    Sayuri Yamagata, Annelies van der Vegt, Andrew Wong
  • Violin 2
    Pieter Affourtit, Anneke van Haaften, Manja Kruidhof-Okkerse
  • Viola
    Staas Swierstra, Deirdre Dowling
  • Cello
    Lucia Swarts, Barbara Kernig
  • Double bass
    Robert Franenberg
  • Oboe
    Rodrigo Lopez Paz, Katharina Verhaar
  • Bassoon
    Benny Aghassi
  • Trompet
    Robert Vanryne
  • Recorder
    Pieter-Jan Belder
  • Harpsichord
    Siebe Henstra
  • Organ
    Leo van Doeselaar
  • Director
    João MB Costa
  • Music recording
    Guido Tichelman, Bastiaan Kuijt, Pim van der Lee
  • Music edit and mix
    Guido Tichelman
  • Camera
    Santiago Rodriguez, Milo McCafferty, Oscar Widl, Enzo Dumettier
  • Lights
    Zen Bloot
  • Grip
    Patrick Galvin, Harm Bredero, Sven Deen
  • Assistant director
    Santiago Rodriguez
  • Video editing
    Rob Gradisen, Robin van Erven Dorens
  • Assistent music recording
    Marloes Biermans
  • Producer concerrt
    Imke Deters
  • Producer film
    Jessie Verbrugh
  • With support from

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