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Classiscsonline Home » Composers » B » Buxtehude, Dieterich

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Dieterich Buxtehude (1637 - 1707)

Buxtehude belongs to the generation of organists before JS Bach and Handel, who both traveled to Lübeck to hear the master perform at the Marienkirche. There Buxtehude served as organist for 40 years, from 1668 until his death in 1707. He wrote a considerable quantity of music (choral and instrumental) for church use, as well as chamber music and keyboard music of a more secular kind.

Keyboard Music

Buxtehude’s many surviving compositions for the organ include some 20 preludes and a larger number of chorale preludes and variations on Lutheran chorale melodies. His harpsichord music includes fugues, toccatas, suites and works in other contemporary forms.

Chamber Music

Buxtehude added also to the repertoire of chamber music, notably in a series of violin sonatas.

Sacred Vocal Music

Amongst Buxtehude’s settings of a large number of biblical and poetic texts is the more extended, devotional Membra Jesu Nostri—a cycle of seven cantatas, each addressed to a different part of Christ’s body on the Cross (his limbs, side, breast, heart and face).



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