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Samplings of BacCantatas

with Miguel Rodé
11:30 am Eastern; 8:30 am Pacific and 17:30 Central European

On hold until further notice.  

Registration Status: OPEN

Series Cost:   $20 per session or $185 for 10
ABS Members:  $15 per session; $140 for series 
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Church of Peter and Paul in Weimar, where the Christmas cantata BWV 63 was first performed.

Miguel is bringing us a new Armchair Journey modeled after his Cantata Trail, which he started during the pandemic, just as Artful Journeys began its Armchair Journeys.  Miguel’s focus was solely on Bach cantatas, an overriding passion of his, and, now during his retirement, the pursuit of a life-long dream.  

We will explore in depth various Bach cantatas, ones that Miguel regards as the most poignant and illustrative of Bach’s genius throughout the different periods of his career.  The discussions will include some well-known works such as BWV 4, Christ lag in Todesbanden and BWV 70, Wachet! Betet! Betet! Wachet!, and others that may be new discoveries for many of us. As Michael Maul writes in his new book, J.S. Bach, each cantata is the Lutheran and auditory equivalent of frescoes, which educate and adorn Catholic churches.

Miguel will present the Cantata Samplings Armchair Journey in a similar manner as he does in his regular Cantata Trail series: He will introduce each piece on the program by providing historical context and some light musical analysis to serve as pointers for deeper appreciation.  After this introduction, the Zoom call is muted and the group will listen to the full cantata together via high-quality streaming.  We’ll then reopen the Zoom audio for discussion and sharing of reactions, impressions, and reflections. Sessions will last 1.5 – 2 hours.


To enhance the experience, materials such as librettos, scores, and program notes are curated and posted to a dedicated website. These resources serve as references for participants during the sessions and provide opportunities for further exploration and enjoyment after the meetings conclude.  The materials will remain available to participants for a month after the series ends.


The sessions will run mostly on Thursdays beginning on November 30, at 11:30 am (Eastern), and continue for 10 weeks, until February 1, 2024.  A couple of sessions will be on Fridays.  For your convenience, all sessions will be recorded and materials will be available for one month following the session

Here is the full schedule:

The early Bach: Arnstadt and Mühlhausen


November 30:   Introduction and

                            BWV 150, Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich

December 7:     BWV 4, Christ lag in Todesbanden and

                            BWV 106, Gottes Zeit is die allerbeste Zeit


Finding his voice in Weimar


December 14:   BWV 12, Weinen, Klagen, Sorgen, Zagen and

                            BWV 21, Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis

December 22 (Fri):   BWV 54, Widerstehe doch der Sünde and 

                                    BMV 63, Christen, ätzet diesen Tag


Secular cantatas in Köthen


December 28:    BWV 173, Durchlauchtster Leopold and

                             BWV 209, Non sa che sia dolore


The Leipzig cycles: First, Second and beyond


January 4:     BWV 22, Jesus nahm zu sich die Zwölfe and

                       BWV 31, Der Himmel lacht! Die Erde jubilieret

January 11:   BWV 70, Wachtet!  Betet! Betet! Wachtet! and

                       BWV 104, Du Hirte Israel, höre

January 19 (Fri):   BWV 1, Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern and

                               BWV 26, Ach wie flüchtig, ach wie nichtig

January 25:   BWV 78, Jesu der du meine Seele and 

                       BWV 99, Was Gott tut, dis ist wohlgetan (II)

February 1:   BWV 39, Brich dem Hungrigen dein Brot and

                       BWV 140, Wachtet auf, ruft uns die Stimme

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Michelangelo’s “The Last Judgement”.  Bach preaches in music about the Last Judgement in Cantata BWV 70.

Our goal is for everyone to recognize the genius of Bach, and to rejoice in the beauty of his works, while gaining an appreciation of his evolving language and style as he matured as a composer and reacted to the changing circumstances of his career.


“J.S. Bach,  Wie wunderbar sind deine Werke!”



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Miguel Rodé

Miguel Rodé was born and raised in Montevideo, Uruguay and moved to the US in 2002 as part of his Information Technology career and currently resides in Seattle, WA. A life-long music lover, over the years Miguel developed a special fascination with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach, and in particular with his cantatas and other vocal works. During the Covid pandemic, Miguel initiated a series of virtual meetings called "The Cantata Trail" with the intent of sharing this incredibly rich musical universe with some close friends. This small community grew organically through word of mouth to its current size of about 70 members. As a musician, Miguel plays the baroque flute and is a member of several chamber ensembles in the Seattle area, for which he also enjoys transcribing and arranging music. 

Joan Hill
Owner, Host, & Director

In 2008, the seed of Artful Journeys was planted in her brain, when Joan brought together all of her life's passions, her love of music, an affinity for the beautiful things in life with an ability to organize events to give birth to Artful Journeys, a program of art education trips for the soul and mind.


Joan was born and raised in the apple country of the Hudson River Valley in New York; her father was a gentle, very tolerant, educated land surveyor, and her mother was the efficient business administrator and home engineer. The youngest of four children, Joan was encouraged to pursue anything she wanted, but also to do her best. Sometimes that was very difficult, especially succeeding three very accomplished siblings.


  • Each session will cost $20 or $185 for all 10 lectures

  • PayPal is preferred; however, we do take checks   

  • A Zoom link will be provided by email within 24 hours of each meeting.

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To register for a session or the series, please click below:

A Zoom link will be provided by email within 24 hours of each meeting.

For details or questions, please click here to contact Joan Hill.
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