Festive Cantatas for the 300th Anniversary of C. P. E. Bach’s Birth The two festive cantatas heard on this CD were first performed in modern times at the St. Thomas Church in Leipzig on the occasion of the three hundredth anniversary of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s birth on 8 March 2014 and recorded especially for this release. The text of the first cantata is by Christian Wilhelm Alers, a pastor highly esteemed throughout Northern Germany as an author of religious texts who quite frequently collaborated with C. P. E. Bach and penned the text of the magnificent Der Tag des Gerichts set by Telemann during his late period. Bach’s finely nuanced instrumentation demanding high technical skill from each and every interpreter reveals both solid compositional craftsmanship and a sophisticated overall tonal plan. These skills mastered by Bach during his Berlin period with his contributions to the symphonic genre represent one of his greatest strengths as a composer, and he was the first to introduce them to Hamburg’s church music. The instrumentation of this cantata doubtless secures it a top position among the symphonic works of his Hamburg years. In the second cantata Bach avails himself of a new tone of folk and song character and designs the choral parts homophonically throughout. He frequently combines the instrumental parts with colla parte simplicity, and the part writing too tends toward a lyrical style. Here too, however, fascinating tonal instrumental combinations are regularly formed.