The German choral conductor and organist, and churc h musician, Jan-Martin Drafehn, studied from 1988 to 1995 at the Evangelischen Hochschule für Kirchenmusik in Halle (Saale), with, among others, KMD Professor Helmut Gleim, former Thomaskantor Professor Georg-Christoph Biller, LKMD Eike Reuter and KMD Professor Johannes Schäfer. He obtained A-Diploma for Church Music.
After his studies, Jan-Martin Drafehn becam Kantor at Stadtkirche St. Peter in in southern Thuringia Sonneberg. From 2004 to 2008 he served as Kreiskantor in Altenburg, eastern Thuringia. He was artistic and conceptual director of the 24th Landeskirchenmusiktage der Evangelisch-Lutherischen Kirche in Thüringen (National Church Music Days of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Thuringia) in 2006. In April 2008, he ws appointed Church Music Director (KMD). In the summer of the same year he was appointed Kantor at the Naumburger Dom (Naumburg Cathedral).
In addition to the overall responsibility for the musical work at Naumburg Cathedral, Jan-Martin Drafehn is responsible for the directon of the Ensembles der Naumburger Domkantorei. The focus of this activity is the quaility of the choir. This includes regular performances of choral-symphonic repertoire with the Naumburger Domchor, the artistic work with the semi-professional Naumburger Kammerchor, which he took over in 2005, especially in the field of demanding a-cappella music, and the other training and direction of the Kinder- und Jugendchöre der Naumburger Domsingschule. Moreover, he also teaches music at the Evangelischen Domschule St. Martin. Here he also directs periodically the Chor der Domschule in major musical projects.
In the years of his professional practice, Jan-Martin Drafehn has specialized increasingly as choral and orchestral conductor, and children's and youth choir director. His repertoire includes the great works of the oratorio literature, such as works by George Frideric Handel (Messiah), W.A. Mozart and Joseph Haydn (Requiem and various Masses), Felix Mendelssohn's oratorios Paulus, Eliah and the symphonic cantata Lobgesang, Deutsche Requiem by Johannes Brahms, Antonin Dvorak (Stabat mater), Camille Saint-Saëns (Christmas Oratorio), John Rutter's Magnificat and Paul McCartney's Liverpool Oratorio . He also conducted all the major choral-symphonic works of J.S. Bach, including Mass in B minor (BWV 232), Matthäus-Passion (BWV 244), Johannes-Passion (BWV 245), Markus-Passion (BWV 247), Magnificat in D major (BWV 243) and Weihnachts-Oratorium (BWV 248), as well as large number of cantatas and instrumental concertos and works by other important composers of Baroque era.
In the orchestra section, Jan-Martin Drafehn has performed beyond several symphonies of W.A. Mozart and F. Mendelssohn and various works for organ and orchestra (organ concertos by G.F. Handel, Josef Rheinberger and Francis Poulenc, Camille Saint-Saëns;s Organ Symphony, Petr Eben's Sinfonia Gregoriana, organ-orchestra concerto by Günter Raphael and premiere of Reinhard Ohse;s Organ concerto, Op. 165.
In a cappella area Jan-Martin Drafehn HAS conducted numerous motets and choral works on Heinrich Schütz, Johann Hermann Schein, Dietrich Buxtehude, J.S. Bach, F. Mendelssohn, J. Brahms, F. Poulenc, Maurice Duruflé, Hugo Distler and various contemporary composers.
Several CD recordings document his artistic work, including the first recording of the Lettner Passion, Op. 108 by Reinhard Ohse at Naumburger Dom on Label Talanton records.