Church Life: Bach Cantatas


The music of J. S. Bach at Grace

Bach Cantata Vespers season ends with the Ascension Oratorio

bach_wide.jpgSunday, May  21
Prelude at 3:45pm
Lobet Gott in seine Reichen

Praise God in his kingdoms (Ascension Oratorio)
, BWV 11

Ben Cieslik, Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Minneapolis, homilist

Florence Jowers, Christ Lutheran Church, Staunton, Virginia, organist

J. S. Bach’s Lobet Gott in seinen Reichen (Praise God in his kingdoms), BWV 11, is also known as the Ascension Oratorio. The text, a compilation of biblical sources, free poetry and chorales, follows the story of the Ascension and the reactions of the disciples. Bach composed the work in 1735, a few months after finishing his Christmas Oratorio. As in the Christmas Oratorio, he arranged music from his earlier secular cantatas, choosing compositions that he thought deserved another hearing.  

The Ascension Oratorio will be presented in the final Bach Cantata Vespers service of the 2016-17 season, on Sunday, May 21, at 4 p.m. Florence Jowers of Christ Lutheran Church, Staunton, Virginia, plays the organ prelude at 3:45. Ben Cieslik of Bethlehem Lutheran Church in Minneapolis is the homilist. The Bach Cantata Vespers Choir, soloists and orchestra will perform the cantata. The favorite hymn “O Day Full of Grace” will close the service.

Read more about the cantata.

Preview lecture at 3 p.m. by Carl Schalk, Professor Emeritus at Concordia University Chicago.