Be Still, Stop Chattering


By: Beth Garrison, CEO, Operant Coffee

In my past life, I was a classically trained flutist who had aspirations of becoming the next principal in the Philadelphia Orchestra.  Unfortunately, reality and a rejection letter turned my path to behavior analysis and coffee.

While doing some coffee research this past week, I discovered with interest as it harkened back to my orchestral days, that Johann Sebastian Bach was such a coffee enthusiast that he wrote a Cantata titled "Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht (Be still, stop chattering)" also known fondly as the "Coffee Cantata."  It is a mini satirical opera where a man pursuades his daughter to give up her addiction to coffee.  It retells all of the behavioral techniques the father uses to persuade her to give up coffee.  In the end, the moral of the story is that "drinking coffee is natural," and is a behavior that should not be punished.

Apparently, this is a girl after my own heart!

To hear this cantata check out Cantata BWV 211 Schweigt stille, plaudert nicht (Kaffeekantate): history, scoring, sources for text and music, translations to various languages, discography, discussion, Bach Cantatas Website

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