This scoring was intended to symbolise the shepherds who are the subject of the second part.
Unfortunately, a quarter of the whole town had recently been devastated by fire; it was difficult for him to find suitable dwellings, and he was thus forced to pay a high rent.
Nevertheless, shortly after his arrival, he brought his cousin Maria Barbara from Arnstadt, and on October 17th he married her at the small church in the picturesque little village of Dornheim. Maria Barbara came of a branch of the musical Bach family, her father being organist at Gehren.
This success gave Bach the courage to put in a long and detailed report, proposing a complete renovation and improvement of the organ in the St Blasiuskirche. The Council agreed to carry out the renovation and improvements, and Bach was given the task of supervising the work, for not only was he now a brilliant player, he had also become an expert on the construction of organs.
The Council had little option but to allow his departure. However, the situation was concluded quite amicably and Bach was asked that he should continue to supervise the rebuilding of the St Blasiuskirche organ.
This he did, and some time in he came over to inaugurate its first performance. Not least was his employer, the Duke of Sachsen-Weimar, one of the most distinguished and cultured nobles of his time.
The Court Orchestra consisted of about 22 players: As was the custom in most 18th century Courts, the musicians also spent some of their time employed in household and domestic duties.
In Bach became the leader of the orchestra, and was now second only to the old and frail Capellmeister Johann Samuel Drese, whose duties he was gradually taking over.
The organ was new and not quite as large as the one at Arnstadt. After a few years, Bach declared that it was inadequate and should be rebuilt. It was in fact rebuilt at great expense according to his plans: During this period he wrote profusely for the organ, and he was rapidly becoming known throughout the country as one of the greatest German organists.
Organ pupils came to him from far and wide, and he was asked to test or dedicate many organs in various towns. His tests were extremely thorough and critical. He would usually complete his trial by improvising a prelude and fugue: He had invented so comfortable a fingering that he could master the most difficult parts with perfect ease using 5 fingers instead of the then normal 3.
However, the conditions and salary were not sufficient for his growing family, so he was obliged to refuse the post. On a visit to Dresden, Bach was invited to compete in a contest with the visiting French organist, Louis Marchand, considered to be one of the best in Europe.
But, on the day appointed for the contest, Marchand decided to withdraw discreetly by taking the fastest coach available back to France. And so Bach gave an impressive solo performance before the assembled audience and referees, establishing himself as the finest organist of the day.
Here the interest was in the new Italian style of music which was then becoming the rage of Europe, one of the chief exponents being the Venetian composer Vivaldi. Bach and his cousin Johann Georg Walther transcribed some of the Italian instrumental concertos for keyboard instruments.
Consequently musicians of the first household were forbidden to fraternize with those of the second. Bach did his best to ignore what was, after all, merely an extension of a private quarrel. But the atmosphere was no longer so pleasant. This infuriated the Duke of Weimar, so that when Bach put in a polite request for his release, he was arrested and put in the local jail.
However, after a month, he was released and given reluctant permission to resign his office. Prince Leopold had already spent three years doing the Grand Tour of Europe, first to Holland and England, through Germany to Italy, returning by way of Vienna.
So he would have been thoroughly familiar with the latest European fashions in music. The young Prince stretched the limited budget of his miniature Court to provide an orchestra of eighteen players, all chosen for their high musical standards from all over the country, some from as far afield as Berlin.
He had well-developed musical tastes, having traveled widely, particularly to Italy, where he studied Italian secular music with great interest; he returned from Italy determined to raise the standard of German secular music to an equally high level.The Little Orchestra is a London based orchestra that creates fun, relaxed and intimate nights out.
Join us at one of our events to hear wonderful pieces played by . EISENACH: Johann Sebastian Bach was born on March 21st l, the son of Johann Ambrosius, court trumpeter for the Duke of Eisenach and director of the musicians of the town of Eisenach in Thuringia.
Johann Sebastian Bach: Biography covers his life from birth to death, all periods and positions especially his last Leipzig period. your free introduction to music notation software. With Finale Notepad, you can create orchestrations of up to eight staves.
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