Johann Philipp Krieger


Born: February 27, 1649; Weißenfels   Died: February 6, 1725; Weißenfels  
Johann Philipp Krieger was one of the most outstanding composers of his time, the author of an immense amount of sacred music. It is likely that the sole reason for his lack of fame is the fact that a large proportion of it has been lost.

Confusingly, he was the elder brother of Johann Krieger (1651 - 1735), also a composer. Their family had been present in Nuremberg since the fifteenth century, at a minimum, and the family trade was rug
Read more making with a member of the Krieger family still making rugs in Nuremberg as late as 1925. According to his earliest biographies, J.P. Krieger began his clavier studies with Johann Dreschel at the age of eight and received instruction in other instruments with Gabriel Schütz. By the age of nine, he was amazing audiences with many musical skills, including his keyboard playing, his own well-crafted compositions, and his ability to sing or play any melody that was sung to him.

In his mid-teens, he traveled to Copenhagen to become the pupil of Johannes Schröder, the royal Danish court organist, and study composition with Kaspar Förster. He had a job offer to go to Christiana (the future Oslo, Norway), but preferred to return home, arriving back in Nuremberg around 1670. There is some inconsistency in the record about this period. Both of his primary biographers say he worked in the town of Zeitz but disagree on the dates while that town's records don't show that he was there at all. They then place him as concert master in Bayreuth, while the only record of his presence there lists him merely as court organist in 1673.

In 1673, war broke out between some German states and France and the Margrave of Bayreuth, Christian Ernst, led his troops out of the region. He generously gave Krieger permission to travel to Italy, at no loss in pay, to study. In Venice, he was taught composition by Johann Rosenmüller and clavier with A.M. Abbatini. In Rome, he studied both subjects with Bernardo Pasquini. On his way back through Austria, he played for Emperor Leopold I, who was so overwhelmed by Krieger's playing that he granted patents of nobility to the entire Krieger family, male and female. Krieger stayed in Bayreuth only a short while. Traveling on through Frankfurt to Main and Kasel, he got job offers in both places. But he finally accepted a position with the grand ducal court in Hallé on November 1, 1677, as concert master. The Grand Duke August, died three years later. His successor, Johann Adolph I, confirmed Krieger in the same job. This required Krieger to make a move with the rest of the court when Johann Adolph moved it to Weissenfels. Krieger remained in that position until he died.

When the ducal court moved to Weissenfels in connection with a sale of some music to the Marienkirch there, he made a catalog of his own compositions and works of other composers he had acquired and presumably played in Hallé. He continued to keep detailed and meticulous lists of all the vocal music he performed in his 45 years in Weissenfels. It shows that he performed well over 2,000 separate works from his own pen, 225 by his brother Johann, and 475 by other composers. Just the list of his cantatas numbers more than 2,000 works, making up the vast bulk of this listing. However, only 74 of them are extant. He also wrote 13 operas, all lost; some other sacred music; and a small amount of secular music.

Krieger made a great contribution to the history of the German church cantata by adopting madrigal verse forms for his texts. The religious purpose of these cantatas was to comment on or illustrate the day's Scripture lesson. Older cantatas were written on texts from the Bible, chorales, or odes. Krieger's more dramatic form was modeled on Italian secular cantatas and consisted of recitatives and arias, which might include specifically written texts, many of which were written by the deacon at Weissenfels, the pastor and poet Erdmann Neumeister. These cantatas sometimes but not always included chorale and Bible texts. This format became known as the "new German cantata," and is the form that Johann Sebastian Bach elevated to its highest level. Krieger's examples are of very high quality, ranking with those of any other of his contemporaries besides Bach himself. The sections of his cantatas are generally in clearly understandable forms with sturdy, uncomplicated rhythmic and harmonic structure.

The extent of his composition of instrumental music is less well-known: He published two sets of trio sonatas (12 for two violins and continuo and 12 for viola da gamba, violin, and continuo) and six suites, called Lustige Feld-Musik, for four wind instruments. These works survive, but some "sonatas" that were obviously early specimens of concerto grosso did not. Of his keyboard works, only three works (a passacaglia, a set of 24 variations on an aria, and a toccata and fugue) survive. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 28 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Music Before Bach / Wunderlich
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 19051 Release Date: 01/12/2018   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Ludwig Senfl,  Anonymous,  Paul Hofhaimer,  Heinrich Isaac  ... 
    Performer:  Emil Seiler,  Fritz Wunderlich,  Adalbert Nauber,  Edith Klein  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernst Laaff
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Mainz State University Institute Of Music Historical Instr.
    CD: $24.99
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  • 2.
    Music in Germany from Schutz to Bach / Lejeune
    Label: Ricercar   Catalog: 109 Release Date: 11/17/2017   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Martin Luther,  Michael Altenburg,  Michael Praetorius,  Johann Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Guy de Mey,  Agnès Mellon,  Greta de Reyghere,  Stéphane Van Dijck  ... 
    Conductor:  Lionel Meunier,  Denis Menier,  Philippe Pierlot,  Erik Van Nevel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vox Luminis,  Choeur de Chambre de Namur Choir,  Ricercar Consort  ... 
    CD: $48.99
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  • 3.
    The Organ in the Renaissance & Baroque / Leonhardt
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 796457 Release Date: 06/10/2016   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Newman,,  Elias Nikolaus Ammerbach,  Taylor,,  John Blitheman  ... 
    Performer:  Gustav Leonhardt
    CD: $21.99
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  • 4.
    Wunderkammer / Acronym
    Label: New Focus   Catalog: 906 Release Date: 05/13/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Samuel Capricornus,  Adam Drese,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Andreas Oswald  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Acronym
    CD: $17.99
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  • 5.
    Bound To Nothing: The German Stylus Fantasticus
    Label: Resonus Classics   Catalog: 10156 Release Date: 09/04/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Dietrich Buxtehude,  Philipp Heinrich Erlebach,  Johann Jakob Walther,  August Kühnel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Fantasticus
    CD: $17.99
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  • 6.
    Abendmusik: Cantatas For Solo Bass
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 95033 Release Date: 08/28/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Christoph Bach,  Franz Tunder,  Johann Schop,  Nicolaus Bruhns  ... 
    Performer:  Mauro [Baritone Vocal] Borgioni
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia Hermans
    CD: $8.99
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  • 7.
    Heart & Soul: Devotional Music From The German Baroque
    Label: Centaur Records   Catalog: 3426 Release Date: 07/10/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Christoph Bach,  Johann Rosenmüller,  Christoph Bernhard,  Dietrich Buxtehude  ... 
    Performer:  Ryland Angel,  Matthew Dirst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ars Lyrica Houston
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  • 8.
    German Baroque Cantatas
    Label: Pan Classics   Catalog: 10293 Release Date: 05/26/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Philipp Förtsch,  Johann Pachelbel,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Heinrich Ignaz Biber  ... 
    Performer:  Hana Blazikova
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  CordArte
    CD: $18.99
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  • 9.
    Johann Hermann Schein: Ich Will Schweigen
    Label: Ramee   Catalog: 1401 Release Date: 01/27/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Hermann Schein,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Heinrich Bach,  Gottfried Reiche  ... 
    Performer:  Marc Meisel,  Béatrice Mayo-Félip,  Alice Foccroulle
    Conductor:  Lambert Colson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Inalto
    CD: $18.99
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  • 10.
    Renaissance And Baroque Organ Music
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 694558 Release Date: 01/27/2015   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Michelangelo Rossi,  Giovanni Gabrieli,  Girolamo Frescobaldi,  Tarquinio Merula  ... 
    Performer:  Herbert Tachezi
    CD: $29.99
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  • 11.
    Deutsche Geistliche Barockmusik: Weihnachten (German Baroque Sacred Music: Christmas)
    Label: Ricercar   Catalog: 349 Release Date: 11/18/2014   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Christoph Graupner,  Various,  Samuel Scheidt,  Dietrich Buxtehude  ... 
    Performer:  Stefan Geyer,  Reinoud Van Mechelen,  Elisabeth Scholl,  Lothar Blum  ... 
    Conductor:  Florian Heyerick,  Bruno Boterf,  Jean Tubery,  Philippe Pierlot  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ex Tempore,  Mannheim Hofkapelle,  Ricercar Consort  ... 
    CD: $48.99
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  • 12.
    A German Soul - Devotional Music From 17th-century Hamburg / Frigole, Ensemble Meridien
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94717 Release Date: 03/25/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Rosenmüller,  Heinrich Scheidemann,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Franz Tunder  ... 
    Performer:  Juan de la Rubia,  Laia Frigole
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Meridien
    CD: $8.99
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  • 13.
    Claviermusik Aus Nurnberg
    Label: Tyx Art   Catalog: 13037 Release Date: 02/25/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hans Leo Hassler,  Johann Erasmus Kindermann,  Johann Staden,  Paul Hainlein  ... 
    Performer:  Ralf Waldner
    CD: $18.99
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  • 14.
    Fortuna Scherzosa / Ina Siedlaczek, Hamburger Ratsmusik
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 92703 Release Date: 02/25/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Philipp Heinrich Erlebach,  Johann Ulich,  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Johann Philipp Krieger
    Performer:  Ina Siedlaczek
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hamburger Ratsmusik
    SuperAudio CD: $19.99
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  • 15.
    Grand Tour / Trio Settecento
    Label: Cedille Records   Catalog: 1002 Release Date: 10/29/2013   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Dario Castello,  Alessandro Stradella,  Biagio Marini,  Arcangelo Corelli  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Trio Settecento
    CD: $34.99
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  • 16.
    Krieger: Musicalischer Seelen-Frieden / Mields, Eckert, Hamburger Ratsmusik
    Label: Carus   Catalog: 83372 Release Date: 03/26/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Philipp Krieger
    Performer:  Dorothee Mields
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hamburger Ratsmusik
    CD: $18.99
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  • 17.
    A Baroque Christmas
    Label: Ricercar   Catalog: 329 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Various,  Samuel Scheidt,  Dietrich Buxtehude,  Matthias Weckmann  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Cristina Kiehr,  John Elwes,  Ian Honeyman,  James Bowman  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Boterf,  Jean Tubery,  Philippe Pierlot,  Leonardo Garcia Alarcon  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ricercar Consort,  Namur Chamber Choir,  La Fenice  ... 
    CD: $44.49
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  • 18.
    Music For Hautbois Band / Marianne R. Pfau, Toutes Suites
    Label: Genuin Classics   Catalog: 12536 Release Date: 04/24/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Johann Christian Schiefer
    Conductor:  Marianne R. Pfau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toutes Suites
    CD: $18.99
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  • 19.
    Mein Herz Ist Bereit / Peter Kooij, Cordarte
    Label: Pan Classics   Catalog: 10211 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Tunder,  Johann Heinrich Schmelzer,  Johann Rosenmüller,  Johann Pachelbel  ... 
    Performer:  Peter Kooy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cordearte
    CD: $18.99
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  • 20.
    Deutsche Barocklieder / Andreas Scholl
    Label: Harmonia Mundi   Catalog: 501505 Release Date: 07/13/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Nauwach,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Heinrich Albert,  Adam Krieger  ... 
    Performer:  Alix Verzier,  Karl-Ernst Schröder,  Markus Märkl,  Andreas Scholl  ... 
    CD: $14.99
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  • 21.
    A German Bouquet / Trio Settecento
    Label: Cedille Records   Catalog: 114 Release Date: 09/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johann Georg Pisendel,  Philipp Heinrich Erlebach,  Dietrich Buxtehude  ... 
    Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine,  John Mark Rozendaal,  David Schrader
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Trio Settecento
    CD: $17.99
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  • 22.
    Ich Will In Friede Fahren / Franz Vitzthum, Les Escapades
    Label: Christophorus   Catalog: 77305 Release Date: 03/31/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giovanni Antonio Rigatti,  Johann Rudolf Ahle,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Ferdinand III  ... 
    Performer:  Franz Vitzthum
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Escapades
    CD: $18.99
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  • 23.
    Bach: Jauchzet Gott Bwv 51;  Rosenmuller: Sacred Concerti, Etc  / Ziesak, Friedrich, Berlin Baroque Compagney
    Label: Phoenix Edition   Catalog: 102 Release Date: 08/26/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johann Rosenmüller,  Jan Dismas Zelenka,  Gottfried Finger  ... 
    Performer:  Reinhold Friedrich,  Ruth Ziesak
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berliner Barock Compagney
    SuperAudio CD: $17.99
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  • 24.
    Krieger: Trio Sonatas / Parnassi Musici
    Label: Cpo   Catalog: 777294 Release Date: 06/26/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Philipp Krieger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Parnassi musici
    CD: $17.99
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  • 25.
    The Secret Handel - Works For Clavichord / Hogwood
    Label: Metronome   Catalog: 1060 Release Date: 03/14/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Johann Philipp Krieger,  Friedrick Wilhelm Zachow
    Performer:  Christopher Hogwood,  Derek Adlam
    On sale! $31.99
    CD: $29.99
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