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Sheep May Safely Graze

Bach arr. Nigel Wood


Sheet Music

PDF E-Edition:





4x Fl. + Alto Fl. + Bass Fl.




"Sheep may safely graze" is a soprano aria by Johann Sebastian Bach. The piece was written in 1713 and is part of the cantata Was mir behagt, ist nur die muntre Jagd, BWV 208. The cantata's title translates The lively hunt is all my heart's desire, and it is also known as the Hunting Cantata.
Like the same composer's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring", "Sheep may safely graze" is frequently played at weddings. However, the cantata of which it forms a part was originally written for a birthday celebration, that of Christian, Duke of Saxe-Weissenfels. Bach was based at the nearby court of Weimar, and musicians from both courts appear to have joined in the first performance in Weißenfels. Bach is known to have used the music again for other celebrations, but it remained unpublished until after his death.
Versions are also available for the following instrumentations:
Clarinet Quintet
Saxophone Quintet


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