Telemann, Georg Philipp

Telemann, Georg Philipp

biographical name

(born March 14, 1681, Magdeburg, Brandenburg—died June 25, 1767, Hamburg) German composer. By age 10 he had learned several instruments, and he composed an opera at age 12, but his family discouraged his pursuit of a musical profession. While studying law at Leipzig University, he organized student music groups and became music director of the Leipzig Opera (1702), organist at the New Church (1704), and kapellmeister to a count (1705). Moving to Eisenach (c. 1708), where he met Johann Sebastian Bach, he composed French-style instrumental music and German-style sacred music. He moved to Gotha (1717) and then Hamburg (1721), where he served as musical director of the Opera (1722–38), for which he wrote several dozen Italian-influenced works. He wrote some 600 cantatas and a total of some 2,000 pieces, many of high quality.

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