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Sebastian Knüpfer (1633-1676): Cantatas, Veni Sancte Spiritus / Manfred Cordes, Weser-Renaissance Bremen

Notes & Reviews:

In 1657 Sebastian Knpfer succeeded Tobias Michael as the choirmaster at the St. Thomas School in Leipzig. As his almost twenty years in this post would demonstrate, he was the right man for the job. His fame quickly spread and also brought him invitations from other cities, where he was able to demonstrate his command of the musical craft. A circle of respected musicians gathered around him and earned Leipzig renown as an important music center. Knpfer became a leading musical personality in Central Germany, and the design of some of his works pointed to the future. Contemporaries received his works, and later generations were interested in his multilayered compositions. His fame is based on the outstanding quality of his sacred works. Working with a full orchestral apparatus, he pulls all the stops in colorful tonal scoring and knows how to form contrasts in a manner similar to Praetorius. For his brilliant and contrapuntally finely crafted compositions, Knpfer chose Gospel and Psalm texts and joined them together in a concertizing combination. In the laudation following his death it was stated, Knpfer's choice meant salvation for Leipzig's music life and a blessing for the post of choirmaster at St. Thomas.



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