Johann Joachim Quantz

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Johann Joachim Quantz
Quantz by Gerhard.jpg
Portrait by Johann Friedrich Gerhard, 1735
Born30 January 1697
Died12 July 1773(1773-07-12) (aged 76)
Potsdam, Germany
Works
List of compositions by Johann Joachim Quantz

Johann Joachim Quantz (German: [kvants] ; 30 January 1697 – 12 July 1773) was a German flutist, flute maker and Baroque music composer. He composed hundreds of flute sonatas and concertos, and wrote On Playing the Flute, a treatise on flute performance.

Germany Federal parliamentary republic in central-western Europe

Germany, officially the Federal Republic of Germany, is a country in Central and Western Europe, lying between the Baltic and North Seas to the north, and the Alps to the south. It borders Denmark to the north, Poland and the Czech Republic to the east, Austria and Switzerland to the south, France to the southwest, and Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands to the west.

Flute musical instrument of the woodwind family

The flute is a family of musical instruments in the woodwind group. Unlike woodwind instruments with reeds, a flute is an aerophone or reedless wind instrument that produces its sound from the flow of air across an opening. According to the instrument classification of Hornbostel–Sachs, flutes are categorized as edge-blown aerophones. A musician who plays the flute can be referred to as a flute player, flautist, flutist or, less commonly, fluter or flutenist.

Baroque music style of Western art music

Baroque music is a period or style of Western art music composed from approximately 1600 to 1750. This era followed the Renaissance music era, and was followed in turn by the Classical era. Baroque music forms a major portion of the "classical music" canon, and is now widely studied, performed, and listened to. Key composers of the Baroque era include Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi, George Frideric Handel, Claudio Monteverdi, Domenico Scarlatti, Alessandro Scarlatti, Henry Purcell, Georg Philipp Telemann, Jean-Baptiste Lully, Jean-Philippe Rameau, Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Arcangelo Corelli, Tomaso Albinoni, François Couperin, Giuseppe Tartini, Heinrich Schütz, Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Dieterich Buxtehude, and Johann Pachelbel.

Contents

Biography

A portrait of Johann Joachim Quantz Johann Joachim Quantz.jpg
A portrait of Johann Joachim Quantz
Frederick the Great playing a flute concerto in Sanssouci, C. P. E. Bach at the harpsichord, Quantz is leaning on the wall to the right; by Adolph Menzel, 1852. Adolph Menzel - Flotenkonzert Friedrichs des Grossen in Sanssouci - Google Art Project.jpg
Frederick the Great playing a flute concerto in Sanssouci, C. P. E. Bach at the harpsichord, Quantz is leaning on the wall to the right; by Adolph Menzel, 1852.

Quantz was born as Hanß Jochim Quantz [1] in Oberscheden, near Göttingen, in the Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg. His father, Andreas Quantz, was a blacksmith who died when Hans was not yet 11; on his deathbed, he begged his son to follow in his footsteps.[ citation needed ] Nevertheless, from 1708 to 1713 he began his musical studies as a child with his uncle Justus Quantz, a town musician in Merseburg; he also studied for a time with a cousin's husband, the organist Johann Friedrich Kiesewetter. From 1714 on, Quantz studied composition extensively and pored over scores of the masters to adopt their style. [2]

Scheden Place in Lower Saxony, Germany

Scheden is a village in the district of Göttingen, Lower Saxony, Germany. The commune of Scheden consists of the three villages: Scheden, Meensen, and Dankelshausen. The river Schede runs through the village. In 2005 the population was 3,182.

Göttingen Place in Lower Saxony, Germany

Göttingen is a university city in Lower Saxony, Germany, the capital of the eponymous district. It is run through by River Leine. At the start of 2017, the population was 134,212.

Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg former Electorate of the Holy Roman Empire

The Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg was an Electorate of the Holy Roman Empire, located in northwestern Germany. It was colloquially known as the Electorate of Hanover, after its capital city of Hanover. For most of its existence, the electorate was ruled in personal union with Great Britain.

In 1716 he joined the town band in Dresden, where in 1717 he studied counterpoint with Jan Dismas Zelenka. In March 1718 he was appointed oboist in the newly formed Dresden Polish Chapel of August II, Elector of Saxony and King of Poland. As it became clear that he couldn't advance as an oboist in the Polish Chapel, Quantz decided to pursue the flute, studying briefly in 1719 with Pierre-Gabriel Buffardin, principal flute in the Royal Orchestra. He became good friends with Johann Georg Pisendel, concertmaster of the Royal Orchestra, who greatly influenced his style. [2]

Dresden Place in Saxony, Germany

Dresden is the capital city and, after Leipzig, the second-largest city of the Free State of Saxony in Germany. It is situated in a valley on the River Elbe, near the border with the Czech Republic.

Counterpoint relationship between voices that are harmonically interdependent (exhibiting polyphony) yet independent in rhythm and contour

In music, counterpoint is the relationship between voices that are harmonically interdependent (polyphony) yet independent in rhythm and contour. It has been most commonly identified in the European classical tradition, strongly developing during the Renaissance and in much of the common practice period, especially in the Baroque. The term originates from the Latin punctus contra punctum meaning "point against point".

Jan Dismas Zelenka, baptised Jan Lukáš Zelenka and also known as Johann Dismas Zelenka or Johannes Lucas Ignatius Dismas Zelenka, was a Czech composer and musician of the Baroque period. His music is admired for its harmonic inventiveness and counterpoint.

Between 1724 and 1727 Quantz completed his education by doing a "Grand Tour" of Europe as a flutist. He studied counterpoint with Francesco Gasparini in Rome, met Alessandro Scarlatti in Naples, befriended the flutist Michel Blavet in Paris, and in London was encouraged by Handel to remain there. In 1728 Quantz accompanied August II on a state visit to Berlin. The Queen of Prussia was impressed and wanted to hire him. Though August II refused, he allowed Quantz to travel to Berlin as often as he was asked to. That year the Crown Prince, Frederick II of Prussia (Frederick the Great), decided to study the flute and Quantz became his teacher for several visits a year. Quantz later told writer Friedrich Nicolai that he once had to hide in a closet during an outburst of Frederick's domineering father, who disapproved of his son's musical studies. Until 1741 Quantz remained at the Saxon Court in Dresden. He married Anna Rosina Carolina Schindler in 1737; the marriage was not happy, and it was generally known in Berlin that Quantz's wife tyrannized him.

Francesco Gasparini was an Italian Baroque composer and teacher whose works were performed throughout Italy, and also on occasion in Germany and England.

Alessandro Scarlatti Italian composer

Pietro Alessandro Gaspare Scarlatti was an Italian Baroque composer, known especially for his operas and chamber cantatas. He is considered the founder of the Neapolitan school of opera. He was the father of two other composers, Domenico Scarlatti and Pietro Filippo Scarlatti.

Michel Blavet was a French composer and flute virtuoso. Although Blavet taught himself to play almost every instrument, he specialized in the bassoon and the flute which he held to the left, the opposite of how most flutists hold theirs today.

When Frederick II became King of Prussia in 1740, Quantz finally accepted a position as flute teacher, flute maker and composer at the court in Berlin. He joined that court in December 1741 and stayed there for the rest of his career. [2] He made flutes from at least 1739 and was an innovator in flute design, adding a second key (D#, in addition to the standard Eb) to help with intonation, for example.

As well as writing hundreds of sonatas and concertos, mainly for the flute, he is known today as the author of Versuch einer Anweisung die Flöte traversiere zu spielen (1752) (titled On Playing the Flute in English), a treatise on traverso flute playing. It is a valuable source of reference regarding performance practice and flute technique in the 18th century.

Quantz remained at Frederick's court at Potsdam until his death in 1773. A biography appeared in 1755 in Friedrich Wilhelm Marpurg's Historisch-kritischen Beyträgen zur Aufnahme der Musik; another, in Italian, followed in 1762. His grandnephew, Albert Quantz, published a full-length biography in 1877.

Few of Quantz's works were published during his lifetime. Most of them are for transverse flute, including more than 200 sonatas, around 300 concertos, 45 trio sonatas, and various flute duets, trios, and quartets.

List of works

The works list was established by Horst Augsbach. [3] 'QV' stands for 'Quantz Verzeichnis', and 'Anh.' for 'Anhang' ("supplement") when the authenticity of the works is in doubt.

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References

  1. Horst E. Gerke, Jühnder Mitteilungen, Vol. 18, Eigenverlag, October 2011, p. 603 (in the Archiv der Ev. Kirche Hannover).
  2. 1 2 3 Biography with translated excerpts of Quantz's autobiography at a Elysium ensemble's website.
  3. H. Augsbach, Johann Joachim Quantz: Thematisch-systematisch Werkverzeichnis, (Stuttgart, Carus-Verlag, 1997)

Further reading