Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn

Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn

BWV 1127 performed by the Netherlands Bach Society
conducted by Hans-Christoph Rademann
Grote Kerk Veere

Behind the music

Story
Story
Texts
Texts
Credits
Credits

Just in time

A cheerful work that was discovered just before it was lost forever

A blessing in disguise. That is what you might call the survival of this strophic aria by Bach. The music was only discovered by a German musicologist in 2005, jotted down in Bach’s own hand on the last two blank pages of a short pamphlet from 1713 containing the printed text of the work.

The copy with Bach’s notes on it turned up in the Duchess Anna Amalia Library, in Weimar, the town where Bach was working in 1713. The poem in twelve strophes is a flattering occasional work for the duke’s birthday, and takes his motto as its starting point: “Everything with God and nothing without him”. The poem incorporates another clever trick, because if you take the first letter of a word in a set place in each strophe, they spell out the duke’s name “WILHELM ERNST”.

Bach thus tailored this piece. If he had performed it again during his lifetime, he would certainly have done something original with the acrostichon. Our recording of this piece was made possible by MWH4Impact. Hence, in this recording, we perform three stanzas centred on the letters M, W and H.

Bach’s cheerful music and key – he opted for C major – emphasise the festivity of the occasion. His chosen form, too, is rather more expansive (and thus more festive) than an ‘ordinary’ strophic aria, as those familiar to us from Schemelli’s Gesangbuchfor example. The voice is ushered in by an instrumental introduction, and instead of just a voice and basso continuo, each strophe ends with a refrain played by a full string ensemble.

So much for the blessing. And what about the disguise? The pamphlet in Weimar was temporarily removed from the library for restoration and research, along with similar occasional works. Shortly afterwards, in September 2004, a catastrophic fire reduced the library to ashes. After being lost for nearly three hundred years, Bach’s Alles mit Gott narrowly escaped never being discovered at all.

BWV
1127
Title
Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn
Instrument
soprano
Genre
cantatas

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Extra videos

Vocal texts

Original

Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn
wird einher manchen Segen ziehn.
Mein Gott, du kennest ja und zählest alle Schritte,
ach! höre doch, was ich im ganzen Leben bitte:
Nichts ohne dich, mit dir, mein Alles anzugehen,
so bin ich schon vergnügt, der Spruch wird feste stehen:
Soll einher mancher Segen ziehn,
alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn.

Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn
wird einher Wundersegen ziehn.
Denn Gott, der Wunder tut im Himmel und auf Erden,
will denen Frommen, selbst, zum Wundersegen werden.
Der Mensch bemühet sich, will Wunder viel verrichten,
und voller Unruh ist sein Sinnen, Denken, Dichten.
Soll einher Wundersegen ziehn,
alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn.

Alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn
wird einher Himmelssegen ziehn.
Du, Gott des Himmels, kannst den Himmel ja erhören,
es kann dein Himmelsschoss Korn, Most und Öl bescheren, wenn Regen, Sonnenschein zur rechter Zeit sich küssen, wenn Erd und Himmel lacht und man wird sagen müssen:
Soll einher Himmelssegen ziehn,
alles mit Gott und nichts ohn' ihn.

Translation

All things with God, without him nought
will hither Many blessings bring.
My God, thou knowest, yea, and tellest all our footsteps, o hear me yet, hear what throughout my life I've prayed for. Nought without thee, with thee in all my undertakings, thus I e'en now am glad, that word will stand unshaken: Should hither Many blessings come, all things with God, without him nought.

All things with God, without him nought
will hither Wondrous blessing bring.
For God hath wonders wrought in heaven and on earth and would for the just himself become a wondrous blessing. Mankind is striving much, would wonders many fashion, and ever restless in its senses, thoughts, intentions. Should hither Wondrous blessing come,
all things with God, without him nought.

All things with God, without him nought
will hither Heaven’s blessing bring.
Thou, God of heaven, canst to heaven grant thy favor,
thy heav'nly bosom can grain, wine and oil apportion
when rain and sunshine have embraced in their due season, when earth and heaven laugh and we must all confess it:
Should hither Heaven’s blessing come,
all things with God, without him nought.

Credits

  • Release date
    7 March 2024
  • Recording date
    10 March 2023
  • Location
    Grote Kerk Veere
  • Conductor
    Hans-Christoph Rademann
  • Soprano
    Kristen Witmer
  • Violin 1
    Cecilia Bernardini, Pieter Affourtit, Anneke van Haaften
  • Violin 2
    Lidewij van der Voort, Kano Imada, Mayumi Sargent Harada
  • Viola
    Femke Huizinga, Ivan Jorge Saez Schwartz
  • Cello
    Lucia Swarts, Anna Litvinenko
  • Double bass
    Robert Franenberg
  • Bassoon
    Benny Aghassi
  • Harpsichord
    Siebe Henstra
  • Organ
    Leo van Doeselaar
  • Director and editor
    Bas Wielenga
  • Music recording
    Guido Tichelman, Pim van der Lee, Lilita Dunska
  • Music edit and mix
    Guido Tichelman
  • Camera
    Martijn Struijf, Wesley Schipper, Jesper Blok, Bjorn Tiebout, Glenn van Eerden
  • Lights
    Ernst-Jan Thieme, Martijn Schroeber, Jordi Kooij, Joey Marcoux
  • Stylist
    Ellen Julianus
  • Assistant director
    Ferenc Soeteman
  • Assistant music recording
    Marloes Biermans
  • Producer film
    Laura Jonker
  • Producer concert
    Imke Deters
  • With support from
    MWH4impact

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