J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Karl Richter
Accompaniment/Orchestra:M³nchener Bach-Orchester
Soloists:M³nchener Bach-Chor
Maria Stader (soprano)
Hertha Töpper (alto)
Ernst Haefliger (tenor)
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (bass)
Individual Works:Cantata 140 "Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme" BWV 140
Magnificat BWV 243
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:Deutsche Grammophon
Catalog Number:419 466-2
Year Released/Recorded:1979/1962
Total Playing Time:64:15
Comments:Cornelia RÚmi said:

An absolute classic, especially as this is said to be Richter's favorite Bach cantata. Passionate and still sounding fresh, though of course not in the now modern and popular "historic" style. Wonderful soloists (Fischer-Dieskau!!!), just listen to the duets in BWV 140. Everlasting, unforgettable.

Brooks Hansen said:

I would echo the enthusiasm of the previous recommender. This is a sumptuous, somewhat slow and majestic take on an extraordinary work. I would offer only one caveat. For the famous third strophe, "zion hort die Wachter singen," the decision has been made to let a solo tenor sing against the collective strings. I think this is a mistake. To me it seems important that the two melodies at play here, and playing against each other at certain points, be presented on an equal footing. Never even having heard the alternative approach, of letting the tenors sing in chorus, I sensed an imbalance in the recording presented here. But this should not keep anyone from purchasing the recording. The performance of the opening chorus is a gift that will keep on giving for a lifetime.

Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • Cornelia RÚmi
  • Brooks Hansen
Date First Submitted:10/17/1998