|Memorial tablet with a grammatical mistake (wurde instead of wurden) at the place of Bach's first home in Weimar. Now the tablet decorates the wall of the Elephant's parking lot|
Bach's bust in Weimar was cast in 1950 but posted at the present location between market place and Anna Amalia Bibliothek only in 1995
In school my teachers had once taught me: When you use a citation you must quote literally. So here we go again: Könige, Fürsten und Herrn müssen die Musicam erhalten; denn großen Potentaten und Regenten gebühret, uber guten freien Künsten und Gesetzen zu halten. Und da gleich einzelne, gemeine und Privat-Leute Lust dazu haben und sie lieben, und doch können sie die nicht erhalten.
|Protest banner in front of Bach's monument in Eisenach|
|Kitsch as kitsch can: |
Bach's head illuminating the discussion panel
|1517-2017: 500 years of Reformation: Im Anfang war das Wort|
Later in the public discussion my query concerning the bishop's remark was one of only two coming from the audience: I claimed that the pact between throne and altar did not end in 1919. It is sufficient to mention the Konkordat the Reich signed with the Holy See and the formation of the Lutheran Reichskirche during the Nazi period. Even nowadays the influence of the two Churches on German society is still important when regarding the number of church goers declining.
Later in the afternoon our group took part in an ecumenical service at the St. Georgenkirche jointly celebrated by the already known lady bishop and the catholic (male, what else?) suffragan bishop of Erfurt. It was Palm Sunday and I liked to sing those old hymns common to both Catholics and Protestants. We also listened to Bach's Praeludium BWV 244 in h-minor, during the service to his cantata Tritt auf die Glaubensbahn (Step on the path of faith) BWV 152, and to the Fuge BWV 244 in h-minor as a postludium.
|St. Georgenkirche in Eisenach|
The orchestra was already assembled and I was waiting for the choir to appear but eventually only a dozen soloists stood in front of the musicians completing the whole set-up. This small company not only sang the solo parts but the choir parts too thus interpreting Bach's music with an unheard dynamic. The singers seamlessly continued without the usual pause between solo and choir. We listened for three hours with only one short interruption. Although some body parts started to ache Bach’s great music filled our hearts up to the end: Wir setzen uns mit Tränen nieder (I tears of grief, dear Lord, we leave Thee).
Many regard this final choir to be the apotheosis of Bach's work. Yet, I have my special favorite: a weeping violin in concert with an alto: Erbarme Dich mein Gott, um meiner Zähren willen! Schaue hier, Herz und Auge weint vor dir bitterlich. (Have mercy, Lord, on me, regard my bitter weeping, look at me heart and eyes both weep to Thee bitterly.)
Note: I found the pieces of music on Youtube where the final choir and the soprano aria are not interpreted by the Dunedin Consort.