Wilhelm Friedemann Bach Biography, Life, Works, and Compositions


Who was Wilhelm Friedemann Bach? Information on German musician and composer Wilhelm Friedemann Bach biography, life story, works and compositions.

Wilhelm Friedemann Bach

Source: wikipedia.org

Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was a German composer and musician who lived from 1710 to 1784. He was the eldest son of Johann Sebastian Bach and his first wife, Maria Barbara Bach. Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was considered one of the most talented and influential musicians of his time, but his career was marked by financial struggles and personal difficulties.


Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was born in Weimar, Germany, and was raised in a musical family. His father, Johann Sebastian Bach, was a renowned composer and musician, and his mother, Maria Barbara Bach, was a talented singer. Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was trained in music from an early age, and he received his first formal music education from his father.

In 1723, when Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was 13 years old, his father became the music director at the St. Thomas Church in Leipzig, and the family moved there. Wilhelm Friedemann Bach studied at the Leipzig University, where he received a degree in law in 1733. However, he pursued music as his primary career and served as an organist and composer in various churches and courts in Germany.

In 1746, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was appointed as the music director at the Liebfrauenkirche in Halle, but he had difficulty managing the choir and orchestra, and his tenure was marked by financial difficulties. In 1751, he moved to Brunswick, where he worked as a court organist and composed music for the Duke of Brunswick. However, his financial situation did not improve, and he struggled with alcoholism and personal problems.



Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was a prolific composer who wrote music in a variety of genres, including keyboard music, chamber music, orchestral music, and vocal music. His music was characterized by its complexity and emotional depth, and it was highly regarded by his contemporaries.

Some of his notable works include the Fantasia in F major for keyboard, the Sonata in D major for flute and continuo, the String Quartet in D minor, and the Cantata “Ich bin vergnĆ¼gt mit meinem Stande.” His music was highly influential on the development of the Classical style, and he is often considered a bridge between the Baroque and Classical eras.

In conclusion, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was a highly talented composer and musician who made significant contributions to the development of classical music. His life was marked by personal struggles and financial difficulties, but his music continues to be highly regarded by musicians and music lovers today.

Source – 2

Wilhelm Friedemann Bach; (1710-1784), German musician and composer, the eldest son of Johann Sebastian Bach. He was born at Weimar in November 1710. His early musical training was under the guidance of his father, who used such works as his own Well-Tempered Clavier to instruct Wilhelm. In 1733 the younger Bach was appointed organist at the Sophia Church in Dresden, a position that afforded him an opportunity to compose, teach, and study. In 1746 he left Dresden for the post of organist and music director at the Church of Our Lady in Halle. He remained there until 1764.

Despite his recognized musical talent, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach had a difficult disposition and many eccentricities, so that during the last 20 years of his life he was employed only irregularly and he lived in poverty and unhappiness. He died in Berlin on July 1, 1784.

The keyboard compositions of Wilhelm Friedemann Bach include seven chorale preludes and three fugues for the organ, as well as numerous fantasies, fugues, preludes, and sonatas for the clavier. His orchestral works include nine symphonies and several concertos for clavier and orchestra. His church music consists of 21 cantatas and a mass (Deutsche Messe).


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