Johann Rosenmüller

Posted on November 26, 2010

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Credited with helping bring Italian music style to Germany in the 17th century, German composer Johann Rosenmüller ended up in Italy after escaping from prison in Leipzig in 1655 when he was 36, where he was charged with sodomy – he was accused along with several choir boys in the Nikolaikirche where he served as organist (previously he had been assistant cantor at the Thomaskirche where J.S. Bach would later serve as cantor).

In Italy, Rosenmüller played trombone at St. Marks and then later became the the maestro di coro and composer at the Ospedale della Pietà, a school for orphaned girls that was famous for its music – (Vivaldi would later serve as chief composer at the Ospedale as well, writing most of his music for the girls). It was while he was in Venice that his compositions in the Italian style circulated in Germany, bringing him fame.

Rosenmüller eventually returned to Germany to serve as composer to the court of the Duke of Brunswick Wolfenbüttel in Saxony. He died there in 1682.

Johann Rosenmüller has a page on Wikipedia, here, as well as at glbtq.com, here. Free scores of Rosenmüller’s music are available at the Werner Icking music archive, here.

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