Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745)

A Bohemian Musician at the Court of Dresden

Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745)

Only in the latter half of the twentieth century did the star of Jan Dismas Zelenka begin to ascend. Why did this major Bohemian composer of the Baroque era - who was known to, and esteemed by Johann Sebastian Bach - remain in the shadows for so long? Although most of Zelenka's music was composed to serve the Catholic liturgy, he left a handful of secular compositions, including six remarkable chamber sonatas. Les mer
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Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745)

Only in the latter half of the twentieth century did the star of Jan Dismas Zelenka begin to ascend. Why did this major Bohemian composer of the Baroque era - who was known to, and esteemed by Johann Sebastian Bach - remain in the shadows for so long? Although most of Zelenka's music was composed to serve the Catholic liturgy, he left a handful of secular compositions, including six remarkable chamber sonatas. When these were first published in the 1960s, the
resurrection of the almost-forgotten Zelenka was heralded.

Drawing upon surviving musical materials, contemporary accounts, and Jesuit documentation, this volume presents insights into Zelenka's life and his music and the brilliant context in which he worked - the Dresden court during the reigns of the Kings of Poland and Electors of Saxony, Friedrich August I and II. A catalogue of Zelenka's compositions is also included.

Introduction ; 1. 1679-c.1710: Zelenka's Early Years in Bohemia ; 2. c.1710-1719: Zelenka's Move to Dresden, Study in Vienna, and Return to Dresden ; 3. 1719-1732: The Liturgical Year of the Dresden Catholic Court Church ; 4. c.1720-1723: Works Written Following Zelenka's Return to Dresden. The Coronation in Prague of Charles VI and Elizabeth Christine as King and Queen of Bohemia ; 5. 1723-1732: Zelenka's Compositions for the Dresden Catholic Court Church ; 6. 1733: Changes ; 7. 1734-1745: Zelenka's Position and Status within the Musical Organization of the Dresden Court ; 8. 1734-1745: Zelenka's Late Compositional Style - Reflections of Musical Change in Dresden ; 9. The Afterlife of Zelenka and his Music ; Appendix 1: Worklist ; Appendix 2: Dedications and Petitions ; Select Bibliography ; Index

Winner of the 2001 Derek Allen for an outstanding published work in the field of musicology, awarded by the British Academy^L

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