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Riemann, Karl Wilhelm Julius Hugo

(203 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Jul 18, 1849, Grossmehlra, Thuringia – Jul 10, 1919, Leipzig). After the Franco-German war of 1870/1871, Riemann studied music and musicology in Leipzig. His dissertation “On musical hearing” (1873) was rejected there but accepted in Göttingen. In Leipzig he gained his Habilitation with a dissertation on the history of musical notation (1878). After working as conductor, music educator, composer, and teacher of theory in Bromberg (1880), Hamburg, and Sondershausen (1881–1890), and also at the Wiesbaden Konservatorium (1…

Raphael, Günter Albert Rudolf

(184 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Apr 30, 1903, Berlin – Oct 19, 1960, Herford). After studying music in Berlin (1922–1925), and supported by A. Mendelssohn and K. Straube, Raphael taught theory of music and composition from 1926 to 1934 at the Leipzig Conservatory, until he was compelled by racist persecution to withdraw to Meiningen (Thuringia) and in 1945 to Laubach (Hesse). After the war, the composer (who won the 1948 Liszt Prize in Weimar) began to teach again, as a lecturer in Duisburg (1949–1953) and from…

Blankenburg, Walter

(184 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Jul 31, 1903, Emleben – Mar 10, 1986, Schlüchtern). During the study of Protestant theology and musicology in Rostock, Tübingen, Göttingen, Freiburg, and Berlin, Blankenburg was an active participant in the Singbewegung (singing movement). As pastor in Vaake (1933–1947), director of the school of church music in Schlüchtern (until 1968), regional church music director of Kurhessen-Waldeck (until 1973), …

Rein, Conrad

(115 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Rain; c. 1475 – before Dec 3, 1522, Copenhagen?), composer. Rein, who came from Arnstadt, served from 1502 to 1515 as rector of the Holy Spirit hospice school in Nuremberg, where he was ordained to the priesthood in 1507. Later he was a singer and probably the first director of the Danish court singers in Copenhagen (Denmark). With his compositions, of which more than 20 survive, he made a distinct contribution to the development of mass and motet composition in the early 16th century. Friedhelm Brusniak Bibliography F. Brusniak, Conrad Rein, 1980 (Ger.) idem, “Zur Ident…

Rosenmüller, Johann

(224 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Giovanni Rosenmiller; 1619, Ölsnitz, Vogtland – before Sep 12, 1684, Wolfenbüttel). After beginning theological studies at Leipzig in 1640, in 1642 he was appointed to a lay position in the Thomasschule and became organist of the Nikolaikirche (1651). As a student of Tobias Michael (1592–1657), in 1653 he was given to expect appointment as master of the Thomasschule choir but was imprisoned in 1655; he escaped from prison and fled to Italy. There is evidence of his presence in Ve…

Kantorei (Professional Choirs)

(317 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] From the Middle Ages onward, the word Kantorei denoted groups of professional singers and instrumental musicians attached to churches and royal courts, led by a cantor; after the Reformation, after the model of the institution established in 1525 by Johann Walter, Kantorei denoted a group of volunteers from the pupils of the local Latin school ( chorus symphoniacus) together with residents of the town as singers ( adiuvantes) and instrumentalists ( collegium musicum) for the performance of polyphonic vocal and instrumental music ( Musica figuralis). From the time…


(212 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] from Greek ῥάπτειν/ rháptein and ᾠδή/ ōdḗ, “stitched song.” In classical Greece, a rhapsodist sang fragments of the Homeric epics in improvised sequence. The word appeared in English c. 1540 in the sense of “epic poem.” In the literature of German-speaking Europe, Rhapsodie was first used by C. Celtis in 1505 as a term for a sequence of literary compositions without a fixed form or mandatory constraints; it was used in that sense by Luther in 1530, then in the 18th century by Christian Ewald v. Kleist (1765) and I. Kant (“Rhapsodie von Wahrnehmungen,” Kritik der reinen Ver…

Greiter, Matthias

(295 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Matthew; c. 1494, Aichach – Dec 20, 1550, Strasbourg), clergyman, hymn writer, cantor, and composer. After attending Latin school and studying in Freiburg im Breisgau (1510) this composer of songs worked from 1522 as a monk and cantor in the cathedral. As J. Walter in Torgau did for Luther, Greiter built the musical foundation for the new orders of ¶ worship of the Strasbourg Reformers and with the type of the lay cantor created a new class of church musician. Already in the ordinarium songs of the “Teutsch Kirchen ampt” [German church of…


(317 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] From the 4th century, the term cantor (Lat.) refers to a singer, chanter, or leader of church music; from the 10th century it refers also to an office held by a member of the cathedral chapter. In the traditional, pre-reformation understanding, the cantor was distinguished from the trained musicus; this distinction survived well into the 18th century. The Protestant image of the leader of a city Kantorei following the model of Johann Walter in Torgau (1525) combined this post with the duties of an ac…

Walter, Johann

(185 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Blankenmüller; 1496, Kahla – before Apr 24, 1570, Torgau). After studying in Leipzig, he became a bass singer with the court musicians of Electoral Saxony in Altenburg (1520) and then composer in Torgau (1525). Walter served as Luther’s musical adviser, working with him on the Deutsche Messe (1525), and wrote many hymn tunes. His polyphonic Geystliche gesangk Buchleyn (1524) inaugurated the history of Protestant church music (IV, 3). When the court musicians in Torgau were disbanded in 1525/1526, he founded the first professional munic…

Nicolai, Philipp

(456 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (Rafflenbol; Aug 10, 1556, Mengeringhausen – Oct 26, 1608, Hamburg). Philipp Nicolai belonged to the same Westphalian-Waldeckian family as the hymnodist Jeremias Nicolai (1558–1632). His education included study under L. Helmbold in Mühlhausen, Thuringia, and in Erfurt (1575) and Wittenberg (1574, 1576–1579). After private studies at the Volkhardinghausen monastery, he was appointed to pastorates in Herdecke (1583), Cologne (1587, serving the clandestine Protestant congregation), …

Weckmann, Matthias

(84 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] (before April, 1619, Niederdorla – Feb 24, 1674, Hamburg) studied with H. Schütz in Dresden and J. Praetorius in Hamburg. After working in Dresden and Nykøbing, in 1655 he became organist at St. Jacobi in Hamburg, where he founded a Collegium Musicum in 1660. A traditionalist in his instrumental works, in his vocal compositions he employed the emotional techniques of “theatrical” composition. Friedhelm Brusniak Bibliography T. Röder, BBKL XIII, 1998, 577–679 (bibl.) A. Silbiger, New Grove XXVII, 22001, 199–202 (bibl.).


(2,264 words)

Author(s): Brusniak, Friedhelm | Winterfeld, Dethard v.
[German Version] I. Music – II. Architecture I. Music 1. In modern usage, choir or chorus (from Gk χορός/ chorós, Lat. chorus) denotes a company of singers in which the individual both interprets and listens to ¶ “choral music” a cappella or with instrumental accompaniment (Chant and song; Music and musical instruments). Since the early Middle Ages, as the forms of choral music have changed for diverse purposes and functions, choral groups have come together as monophonic or polypho…


(711 words)

Author(s): Düchting, Reinhard | Brusniak, Friedhelm | Felmy, Karl Christian
[German Version] I. Literature – II. Music – III. Orthodox Liturgy I. Literature Historically, the term ode (Gk ᾠδή/ ōdḗ, “song”; cf. the derivative lit. forms of the palinode, “poetic retraction,” and parody, “mock song/poem”) was increasingly reserved for a formal song or poem of exalted emotion ( carmen). Pindar (apart from four books of epinicia [victory songs], only frgms. extant) was the poetic muse of Horace (IV 2), whose four books of carmina ( odae), though little read in the Latin Middle Ages, provided a model for the Latin and vernacular strophic lyric poet…


(1,584 words)

Author(s): Kronauer, Ulrich | Konold, Wulf | Brusniak, Friedhelm
[German Version] 1. Mendelssohn, Moses (Sep 6, 1729, Dessau – Jan 4, 1786, Berlin), youngest of the three children of Mendel Heymann and his wife Bela Rachel Sara. The father was a synagogue attendant and scribe of the Jewish community. The boy, who was deformed and had a weak constitution, was supported by the Dessau rabbi David Fränkel, and, as he said himself, reading M. Maimonides's More Nevukhim (ET: Guide for the Perplexed) made a lasting impression on him. In 1743 Mendelssohn followed Fränkel to Berlin, where he lived in very impoverished circumstances. He ac…