"Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme" (literally: Awake,
the voice is calling us) is a Lutheran hymn written in
German by Philipp Nicolai, first published in 1599
together with "Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern". It
appears in German hymnals and in several English
hymnals in translations such as "Wake, Awake, for Night
Is Flying". The hymn is known as the foundation of
Johann Sebastian Bach's chorale cantata Wachet auf,
ruft uns die Stimme, BWV 140, as well as being the
foundation of settings by other composers.
The beginning of the melody, three notes of the triad,
have been used in bell tuning. Several composers were
inspired to vocal and instrumental settings.
Dieterich Buxtehude composed two cantatas based on the
hymn, BuxWV 100 and BuxWV 100. Johann Sebastian Bach
based his chorale cantata Wachet auf, ruft uns die
Stimme, BWV 140, on the hymn and derived one of the
Schübler Chorales, BWV 645, from the cantata's central
movement. His son Johann Christoph Friedrich Bach wrote
a cantata for a four-part choir, Wachet auf, ruft uns
Although originally written for chorus (SATB), I
created this arrangement for Solo Viola.