In last weeks blog we spoke about the aria “Erbarme dich” from the Saint Matthew Passion by J.S.Bach (1685-1750). During our Easter concert in the Saint Nicolas church in La Roche-en-Ardenne on 14 April 2019 at 16.00 hrs, we will also perform the moving recitative “Wiewohl mein Herz in Tränen schwimmt” and the beautiful aria “Ich will dir mein Herze schenken”.
We have chosen to bring it in the original key for the soprano voice, G major. Every key creates its own atmosphere. If played with original instruments, which we have not, it would sound half a tone lower. And if we would use the partition for the mezzo voice in F-major, it would be one whole tone lower and thus not reflect the atmosphere which is intended in this aria, we feel.
Also this time I found some nice programmes in my “basket” and they brought back sweet memories.
In those days Eric and I, together with our children, lived in Hengelo, in the east of the Netherlands near the German border.
There we had the opportunity to enjoy an impressive performance of Saint Matthew Passion in the City Hall in 1986.
Later our son Kim joined the boys choir of the Saint Plechelmus Basilica in Oldenzaal and he had the opportunity to sing in both the Saint Matthew Passion by Bach as the Messiah by Händel. They even made a trip with their choir to Italy and it all left a great impression!
Ich will Dir mein Herze schenken
Before I present the text of the recitative and the aria, I’d also like to give you the “introduction”, to better be able to understand their context.
He answered thus and said:
He who his hand with me in the dish now dippeth, this one will
betray me. The Son of man indeed goeth hence, as it hath been
written of him; but woe to that man through whom the Son of man
hath been betrayed! It were better for him if this very man had never
Then answered Judas, who betrayed him, and said:
Is it I, Rabbi?
He said to him:
But when they ate, Jesus took bread, gave thanks and
brake it, and gave it to his disciples, saying:
Take, eat, this is my Body.
And he took the cup and, giving thanks, he gave it to them, saying:
Drink, all of you, from this; this is my blood of the New Testament,
which hath been poured out here for many in remission of their sin
I say to you: I shall from this moment forth no more drink from this
the fruit of the grapevine until the day when I shall drink it anew
with you within my Father’s kingdom.
Recitative – Soprano
Wiewohl mein Herz in Tränen schwimmt,
Although my heart swims in tears
Das Jesus von mir Abschied nimmt,
Because Jesus takes leave of us,
So macht mich doch sein Testament erfreut:
Yet his testament makes me glad.
Sein Fleisch und Blut, o Kostbarkeit,
His flesh and blood, o preciousness,
Vermacht er mir in meine Hände.
He bequeaths into my hands.
Wie er es auf der Welt mit denen Seinen
As he, in the world, with his own
Nicht böse können meinen,
Could not think evil,
So liebt er sie bis an das Ende.
So he still loves them to the end.
Aria – Soprano
Ich will dir mein Herze schenken,
Senke dich, mein Heil, hinein!
Ich will mich in dir versenken;
I will give my heart to thee;
Sink thyself in it, my Salvation.
I will submerge myself in thee.
Ist dir gleich die Welt zu klein,
Ei, so sollst du mir allein
Mehr als Welt und Himmel sein.
And if the world is too small for thee,
Ah, then for me alone shalt thou
Be more than world and heaven.
Enjoy the week,