Saturday, December 26, 2009

Johann Pisendel

Johann Georg Pisendel was a German violinist and composer born on December 26, 1687 (J.S. Bach was 2 years old.) He either knew or worked with many outstanding musicians of his day, including Vivaldi, Albinoni, Telemann, Marcello, Torelli, Benda, Zelenka, and J.S. Bach. At the age of 10, he joined the Ansbach court chapel as a choir singer. By 16, he was a violinist in the court orchestra and studying violin with Giuseppe Torelli. In 1709, he left Ansbach for Leipzig (150 miles northeast.) In 1712, Pisendel joined the Dresden court orchestra as a violinist, which afforded him a great opportunity to tour Europe (France, Germany, and Italy) and study with some of the great violinists and composers. In 1730, Pisendel became concertmaster of the Dresden orchestra, already one of the best orchestras in Europe. He composed sporadically due to his duties as a violinist and soloist but managed to write many violin concerti and violin sonatas, among other small works. At present, none of them are played, except perhaps in Germany. He remained in Dresden until his death on November 25, 1755, at age 67. Mozart would be born a year later. 

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