Composing and performing motets in Rostock around 1600

Activity: Talk or presentationLecture and oral contribution


Around 1600 Rostock was a thriving Hanseatic city with comprehensive musical activities. Professional performances of music were supported by the churches, the city council and the intellectual circles at the University. A vast number of sacred vocal works testify how music was an integrated part of society: Performances took place during liturgical services or when weddings, diplomat visits or doctoral feasts were celebrated.

Composing was not so much an act reflecting the personality of the individual. Rather the aesthetics of church music were shaped by long discussions on the relation of theology and the arts. However, composers from Rostock also sought inspiration in an international repertoire, taking contemporary trends and fashions into account. They adapted and challenged new compositional techniques in order for their works to suit local conditions. For instance, much attention was apparently paid to the large interior of the St. Marienkirche for the sake of exploiting its acoustics.

The lecture will provide an overview of musical activities in Rostock around 1600 and show examples of extant sources telling about the repertoire performed in the city. Furthermore, introductions will be made to some of the works that will be performed at the concert Friday evening.

Period17 May 2019
Event title94. Bachfest der Neuen Bachgesellschaft e.V. in Rostock
Event typeOther
LocationRostock, Germany, Mecklenburg-VorpommernShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational