Although he was just three years younger than J.S. Bach, Johann Friedrich Fasch was a leader in making the transition from late Baroque to early Classical in Germany.
Fasch‘s family was traditionally associated with the Lutheran church, either as theologians or as Kantors. He was a boy soprano in the towns of Suhl and Weissenfels. The composer J.P. Kuhnau heard him sing and convinced him to attend the Thomasschule in Leipzig from the age of 13. He became friends with another student, the 20-year-old Georg Philipp Telemann (1681 – 1767). While Fasch was attending the university (like Telemann, he was a law student) he founded a collegium musicum, as Telemann had, taking care that it would remain a permanent organization after he left. It survived until 1756, and counted J.S. Bach as one of its leaders during its lifetime. It took a position in Leipzig’s musical life nearly as important as that of the Thomasschule itself.
His work, besides organizing musical activities in the church and the court, was primarily writing cantatas for the church and festive music for the count. His fame and his music spread throughout Germany. This was partly because of the network of correspondence he enjoyed with other composers, such as Telemann, J.G. Pisendel, his own son Carl Friedrich Christian Fasch, and C.P.E. Bach. Faschwrote 12 complete cantata cycles, 16 or more masses, four operas, over 90 overtures, and large quantities of symphonies, concertos, and sonatas. None of Fasch‘s music was published during his lifetime, and a large percentage of the sacred music is lost, but most of the instrumental music survives. via allmusic.com
The Best of Johann Friedrich Fasch
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