Notes and Editorial Reviews
"Listening to these works is synonymous with pure joy: Graupner’s expressive chromaticism, the uncommonly manifold instrumental color artistry in the arias, and the most highly proficient application of the Baroque doctrine of the affections are enchanting and gripping. All of this is more immediately understandable and emotionally more heartfelt than the works of Bach." This is what klassik-heute. com wrote following the release of our Vol. 2 with the Passion cantatas of Christoph Graupner. And now – for the Passion season – we are releasing Vol. 3. Once again the instrumentation has been designed with great variety, and it is here that the key to Graupner’s personal style is to be found: he captivates listeners not so much with impressive, highly memorable »melodies« but with intensive playing with the various tone colors made available to him by the court chapel members and their instruments on each particular occasion. For all their individuality and rich variety, however, the cantatas are linked together: the three works for Quinquagesima, Passion Sunday, and Holy Thursday presented here adhere to the formal structure with seven numbers as a rule most frequently employed by Graupner. Their design is largely symmetrical, with framing choral numbers and one soprano aria and one bass aria. These cantatas have in common a contrast principle assigned central importance and employed on a textual and dramatic level as well as in the musical design. It is precisely here that Graupner’s original background as an opera composer is reflected, a circumstance that had enabled him to gather experience with pronounced dramaturgical oppositions.