Cantata No. 78

By Johann Sebastian Bach
Composed in 1724

Bach composed this cantata in Leipzig in 1724 “for the 14th Sunday after Trinity.”

The cantata is in seven parts. It opens with a majestic chorus based upon a chromatic descending bass line. The choral passages are an interplay between the alto, tenor and bass lines, with the sopranos joining in with the choral melody. The initial orchestral motif is in turn taken up by the chorus; other themes that Bach first gives to the chorus are then taken up by the strings and winds. T

he following movement is a soprano-alto aria (sung today by the women’s chorus), the text beseeching help from above and the music charming in its dance-like motifs. Tenor and bass recitatives and arias follow, with initial forebodings ending in religious affirmations. The closing chorale ends this work on a note of hope.

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