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Crossing Confessional BoundariesThe Patronage of Italian Sacred Music in Seventeenth-Century Dresden$
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Mary Frandsen

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195178319

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195178319.001.0001

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The Forgotten Mäzen Johann Georg II

The Forgotten Mäzen Johann Georg II

Chapter:
(p.3) Prologue The Forgotten Mäzen Johann Georg II
Source:
Crossing Confessional Boundaries
Author(s):

Mary E. Frandsen

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195178319.003.0010

In treatments of the political, social, and cultural history of Saxony, Elector Johann Georg II (r. 1656–80) generally receives only scant mention. Scholars of musical life in Dresden during the Baroque era have focused their attention on the reigns of Johann Georg I, Friedrich August I (r. 1694–1733), and Friedrich August II (r. 1733–63), and have left the decades of the later seventeenth century largely unexplored. But the resulting lack of attention to musical activity during Johann Georg II's reign is unjustified, for he stands as a bold and venturesome spirit, one who crossed confessional boundaries in order to introduce the most recent Italian sacred music into this Lutheran area of northern Europe. He brought castrati to Dresden, appointed Roman composers as his Kapellmeisters, and advanced a new musical idiom in his court chapel, one whose influence would be felt in courts and cities as far away as Stockholm. With its large, Italian-dominated Hofkapelle, Johann Georg II's court stood with those of the Holy Roman Emperor and the elector of Bavaria as one of the most important centers of musical patronage in the German-speaking lands.

Keywords:   Johann Georg II, sacred music, Lutheran, music patronage

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