Classic Cat


Johann Sebastian Bach   BWV 211

Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht

Cantata Time: 25'30.

Coffee Cantata. Kaffeekantate.

Buy sheetmusic for this work at SheetMusicPlus

Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht ("Be still, stop chattering") (aka The Coffee Cantata) (BWV 211) is a secular cantata written by Johann Sebastian Bach between 1732 and 1734. Although classified as a cantata, it is essentially a miniature comic opera.

In a satirical commentary, the cantata amusingly tells of an addiction to coffee, a pressing social problem in eighteenth century Leipzig, where this work was premiered.

The cantata's libretto (written by Christian Friedrich Henrici) features lines such as "If I can't drink my bowl of coffee three times daily, then in my torment, I will shrivel up like a piece of roast goat"—a sentiment that would likely have been appreciated by the patrons of Zimmerman's Coffee House in Leipzig, where Bach's Collegium Musicum, founded by Georg Philipp Telemann in 1702, would have originally performed the work.

Bach wrote no operas: the cantata was written for concert performance[1], but is frequently performed today fully staged with costumes.



Role Voice type Premiere Cast, 1734
The Narrator tenor
Schlendrian, (literally Stick in the Mud) baritone
Lieschen, daughter of Schlendrian soprano


Movement Title Characters Synopsis
1 Recitativo: Schweigt stille Narrator The narrator tells the audience to quiet down and pay attention, before introducing Schlendrian and Lieschen.
2 Aria: Hat man nicht mit seinen Kindern Schlendrian Schlendrian sings in disgust of how his daughter refuses to listen to him, even after telling her 1,000 times.
3 Recitativo: Du böses Kind Schlendrian and Lieschen Schlendrian asks his daughter again to stop drinking coffee, Lieschen defiantly tells her father to calm down.
4 Aria: Ei! Wie schmeckt der Kaffee süße Lieschen Lieschen sings a love song to her coffee
5 Recitativo: Wenn du mir nicht den Kaffee läßt Schlendrian and Lieschen Schlendrian starts giving ultimatums to his daughter, threatening to take away her meals, clothes, and other pleasures. Lieschen doesn't seem to care.
6 Aria: Mädchen, die von harten Sinnen Schlendrian In this sung monologue, Schlendrian tries to figure out what his daughter's weak spot is, so she absolutely couldn't want to drink coffee again.
7 Recitativo: Nun folge, was dein Vater spricht! Schlendrian and Lieschen Schlendrian threatens to prevent his daughter from marrying if she fails to give up coffee, Lieschen has a sudden change of heart.
8 Aria: Heute noch, lieber Vater Lieschen Lieschen thanks her father for offering to find her a husband, and vows to give up coffee if she can have a lover instead.
9 Recitativo: Nun geht und sucht der alte Schlendrian Narrator The narrator states that while Schlendrian goes out to find a husband for his daughter, Lieschen secretly tells potential suitors that they must let her drink her coffee if they care to marry her.
10 Trio: Die Katze läßt das Mausen nicht Tutti All three characters sing the moral of the story, "drinking coffee is natural".



External links

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Coffee_Cantata". Allthough most Wikipedia articles provide accurate information accuracy can not be guaranteed.

Our dream: to make the world's treasury of classical music accessible for everyone. See the about page on how we see the future.
Help us with donations or by making music available!

Contact     Privacy policy    Looking for classical mp3 downloads? We index the free-to-download classical mp3s on the internet.
©2023 Classic Cat - the classical music directory
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale