Befiehl dem Herrn deine Wege! WoO VII/34

Wedding Song for soprano and organ

Creation
Komponiert in München, zwischen 25. März und 8. April 1902
Status

Performance medium
Soprano; Alto; Organ

Work collection
  • -
Original work
  • -
Versions
  • -

1.

Reger-Werkausgabe Bd. II/7: Vokalwerke mit Orgelbegleitung und weiteren Instrumenten, S. 40–43.
Herausgeber Alexander Becker, Christopher Grafschmidt, Stefan König.
Unter Mitarbeit von Dennis Ried und Stefanie Steiner-Grage.
Verlag Carus-Verlag, Stuttgart; Verlagsnummer: CV 52.814.
Erscheinungsdatum Juni 2019.
Notensatz Carus-Verlag, Stuttgart.
Copyright 2019 by Carus-Verlag, Stuttgart and Max-Reger-Institut, Karlsruhe – CV 52.814.
Vervielfältigungen jeglicher Art sind gesetzlich verboten. / Any unauthorized reproduction is prohibited by law.
Alle Rechte vorbehalten. / All rights reserved.
ISMN M-007-18850-4.
ISBN 978-3-89948-318-5.


Category
Text template
First edition
unknown

Template edition

Copy shown in RWA: DE, Karlsruhe, Max-Reger-Institut/Elsa-Reger-Stiftung.

Note: Reger hatte das Gesangbuch von Friedrich Spitta, einem der beiden Herausgeber, erhalten.


Annotations

Note: Quelle: Psalm 37, Vers 5.

Note: Bei der Suche nach einem “schönen Bibelspruch (siehe Entstehung) kam Reger möglicherweise das Evangelische Gesangbuch für Elsaß-Lothringen in den Sinn, das er etwa zu dieser Zeit ohnehin für die Komposition des Chorwerks Komm, Heiliger Geist WoO VI/19 zur Hand genommen hatte. Das Gesangbuch ziert das Motto “Befiehl dem Herrn deine Wege”, wobei der Psalm selbst nicht wörtlich aufgenommen ist, sondern nur als Akrostichon in dem Kirchenlied Befiehl du deine Wege (Nr. 300) von Paul Gerhardt erscheint (die Versanfänge ergeben hintereinander gelesen den Psalm).


1. Composition and Publication

After Reger and Elsa von Bercken had seen each other again at a song recital on 27 February 1902 in Munich, Elsa, once again being courted, approached the composer “with a big request, which I believe is very presumptious”: “Whitsun is the wedding of a charming young girl, at a neighbor’s estate, Berthel & I would like to sing something for her as a surprise in the church […]. It would give me great pleasure if we could sing a duet by Reger. But the accompaniment must be easy, as the teacher is no hero on the organ. And the vocal parts not too difficult either, otherwise Berthel will not risk it. Please have a look for a beautiful quotation, suitable for the wedding, a quotation from the Bible.” (Letter dated 21 to 24 March) Presumably Reger set about searching for the “beautiful quotation from the Bible straight after receiving the letter, and informed Elsa von Bercken about this, who wrote back on Maundy Thursday (27 March): “So really, my feelings about you were not mistaken, for you only wrote the card so that I would have a greeting from you today, you wanted to prove to me that you are in my thoughts, for otherwise there would have been time for the chorale question.” (Letter dated 27 to 29 March)

Elsa von Bercken confirmed the receipt of the three manuscripts, of which the two vocal scores were each prefaced with a motto (copy for Elsa von Bercken: “Im Anfange war der Rhythmus! [In the beginning was the rhythm!]”, copy for Bertha von Seckendorff: “Von der Stirne heiß rinnen muß der Schweiß [The sweat must run hot from the forehead.]”), on 10 April: “Now many hearty thanks for the chorale which I received yesterday evening, as Berthel brought the post with her from the town. The mottos are good, I will endeavor to take mine to heart. Berthel is fidgeting with anxiety about the many leaps in her part, i.e. about the runs, etc., and thinks she will never learn them”. (Letter)

Reger may have sent the engraver’s copy soon after completing the work to Musik-Woche; at least one music insert by him was published every month in this periodical from October 1901 to October 1902. The choral work Komm, Heiliger Geist WoO VI/19, which then appeared in the first May volume, had presumably already been submitted, so that the wedding song probably came at just the right time for him. On 22 April Elsa von Bercken expressed a further wish: “[…] it is such an exceptionally beautiful duet & we would like to have it dedicated to us!” (Letter)1 But Reger could not promise her this, at least with regard to the first edition: Whether it is still possible that I can dedicate it to you and the Baroness, I do not know; it will be published in May in the music periodical ‘Musikwoche’!” (Letter dated 23 April) The dedication was later added to the proofs which Reger received and probably returned on 22 May (letter). Befiehl dem Herrn deine Wege! was published (with the dedication) in the last week of May.

2.

Translation by Elizabeth Robinson.


1
On this occasion she reminded Reger of an episode three years earlier, when he divided ten “Liebeslieder” which were actually dedicated to her into the future opp. 35 and 37 because she had rejected him: “Will I not receive a song of my own again, you took so much back from me out of defiance.”

1. Reception

At present, there are no records of performances in Reger's time.

1. Stemma

Die in Klammern gesetzte Quelle ist verschollen.
Die in Klammern gesetzte Quelle ist verschollen.

2. Quellenbewertung

Der Edition liegt als Leitquelle die Zeitschriftenbeigabe zugrunde. Da alle zu Regers Lebzeiten erschienenen greifbaren Drucke (Zeitschriftenbeigabe, diese im Jahrgangssammelband, Einzelausgabe, Übernahmeexemplar E. Hoffmann) dieselben Platten ohne Änderungen des Notentextes verwenden, wurden als zusätzliche Quellen lediglich die Zweitschriften herangezogen. Die aufführungspraktischen Hinweise dieser Partituren wurden nur in Fällen von grundlegender Bedeutung übernommen und bleiben ansonsten dem Kritischen Bericht vorbehalten.

3. Sources

  • Stichvorlage
  • Zweitschriften mit hervorgehobenen Stimmen
  • Erstdruck
Object reference

Max Reger: Befiehl dem Herrn deine Wege! WoO VII/34, in: Reger-Werkausgabe, www.reger-werkausgabe.de/mri_work_00241.html, last check: 16th June 2024.

Information

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