German 17th-Century Church Music

German 17th-Century Church Music

Robin Blaze (countertenor), The Parley of Instruments


Seventeenth-century church music written for Lutheran churches in Germany was largely influenced by the highly fashionable music emerging from Italy at the time. In 1620 composers such as Heinrich Schütz and Michael Praetorius experimented with a new Italian style that used small combinations of solo voices and obbligato instruments, allowing solo singers to show off their virtuosity and expressive abilities.

The famous 'Lamento', Ach, dass ich Wassers gnug hätte in meinem Haupte, for alto, violin solo, four-part strings and continuo is attributed to Heinrich Bach, but a lost copy in the Bach family archive (once owned by JS Bach) is ascribed to Johann Christoph Bach, this is more convincing given the highly sophisticated and expressive style of the music which is similar to his other works.

Newsletter Sign Up