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Johann Sebastian Bach, A Biography Of His Life

806 words - 4 pages

Bach was born on March 21, 1685, in Eisenach, Thüringen, into a family that over seven generations produced at least 53 prominent musicians, from Veit Bach to Wilhelm Friedrich Ernst Bach. Johann Sebastian received his first musical instruction from his father, Johann Ambrosius, a town musician. When his father died, he went to live and study with his elder brother, Johann Christoph, an organist in Ohrdruf.In 1700 Bach began to earn his own living as a chorister at the Church of Saint Michael in Lüneburg. In 1703 he became a violinist, taught by his dad in the beginning, in the chamber orchestra of Prince Johann Ernst of Weimar, but later that year he moved to Arnstadt, where he ...view middle of the document...

During this period he wrote mostly secular music for ensembles and solo instruments. He also prepared music books for his wife and children; with the purpose of teaching them keyboard technique and musicianship.Bach's first wife died in 1720, and the next year he married Anna Magdalena Wilcken, a singer, keyboard player, and daughter of a court musician. Bach had 13 children in addition to the 7 he had had with his first wife, although only 10 of them lived to be adults. Anna helped him in his work by copying the scores of his music for the performers. Eventually, Anna's handwriting looked the same as Bach's.Bach moved to Leipzig in 1723 and spent the rest of his life there. His position as musical director and choirmaster of Saint Thomas's church and church school in Leipzig was unsatisfactory in many ways. He squabbled continually with the town council, and neither the council nor the populace appreciated his musical genius. They saw in him little more than a stuffy old man who clung stubbornly to obsolete forms of music.Nonetheless, the 202 cantatas surviving from the 295 that he wrote in Leipzig are still played today, whereas much that was new and...

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