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Johann Erasmus Kindermann (Composer)

Born: March 29, 1616 - Nuremberg, Bavaria, Germany
Died: April 14, 1655 - Nuremberg, Bavaria, Germany

Jorann Erasmus Kindermann was a Nuremberg organist. He was a pupil of Staden; sang and played violin at the Sunday afternoon Frauenkirche concerts while in his teens; visited Italy at city council expense in 1635; returned in 1636 to become second organist at the Frauenkirche; served as organist at Schwäbisch Hall in 1640, but soon returned to his home city as organist in the Egidienkirche, remaining there until his death. Georg Caspar Wecker, Schwemmer, and J. Agricola were among his pupils.

Jorann Erasmus Kindermann issued thirteen publications at Nuremberg between 1639 and 1653. His chief work is entitled Harmonia organica in tabulaturam Germanicam composita, etc., first published in 1645, and republished in 1665. It is remarkable, as being one of the earlist specimens of German copper-plate engraving, and is also of importance in the history of organ-playing and organ composition. As the title indicates, the music is given in the old German tablature notation. The work opens with fourteen preludes mainly in the church tones, followed by fugal fantasias on Choral-tunes, and concludes with some Magnificat intonations and verses. The pedal is treated obbligato throughout. Ritter gives three examples from the work in modern notation. His music shows some idiomatic conception, with organ works using obbligato pedal and violin music calling for scordatura. Contrasting solo and choral movements in his cantatas and recitative passages in his dialogues are progressive traits, while his concertato pieces reflect his Italian training and are suggestive of Heinrich Schütz's work.

Kindermann's other works are partly sacred, partly secular compositions for voices with basso continuo and occasional viol and violin accompaniment. Other music includes arias, sonatas, and suites.

Selections from his works have been reprinted in D.D.T. (2nd series) xiii. and xxi. He also composed a large number of Choral-tunes, harmonised for three voices, to the Nuremberg precher Dilherr's Evangelische Schlussreimen and Göttliche Liebesftamme (1649-1652). Some works for instruments only, partly viols, partly wind instruments, are also mentioned, but do not seem to exist complete. (See Eitner, Q.-L.)

Source: Grove’s Dictionary of Music and Musicians (1952 Edition, Author: J.R. Milne); HOASM Website
Contributed by
Aryeh Oron (January 2006)

Use of Chorale Melodies in his works


Chorale Melody


Cantata Herr Gott, dich loben wir for 6 voices and instruments

Herr Gott, dich loben wir [The German Tedeum]

Fuga for organ on Was Mein Gott Will, das G'scheh Allzeit (from Harmonia organica, in tabulaturam germanicam (5 parts)

Was mein Gott will, das g’scheh allzeit


Links to other Sites

HOASM: Johann Erasmus Kindermann
KINDERMANN, Johann Erasmus (BBKL) [German]

Johann Erasmus Kindermann (1616-1655) (klassiekemuziekgids) [Dutch]
Johann Erasmus Kindermann (musikebus) [Dutch]



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Last update: Wednesday, June 14, 2017 15:13