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Joachim Quantz

Johann Joachim Quantz(1697-1773) Quantz was on of the first professional flute players in 18th century Europe. He began musical training under his uncle in 1708, and learned to play most of the string family as well as the oboe and the trumpet. After joining the Dresden town band, Quantz was offered a position as oboist in the Polish chapel of Augustus II, Elector of Saxony and King of Poland. Quantz found little opportunity for advancement as an oboist, and turned to the flute in 1719. P. G. Buffardin, the French flutist, was his first teacher. In his autobiography, Quantz credited J. G. Pisendel with influencing his musical style the most. Pisendel was a leading representative of mixed taste, a mix of French and Italian influences. Pisendels effect on his composition can be seen in Quantzs sonatas and trio sonatas, which follow the four-movement arrangement of the Italian church sonata, but integrate French dances.Quantz studied counterpoint in Italy, and also visited France and England. Shortly after, in 1728, he was promoted to a regular member of the Dresden court chapel on flute, and no longer had to double on oboe. That same year, on a visit to Berlin Quantz met Frederick the Great, and afterward returned to the Prussian court twice a year to give the Prince flute lessons. In 1740, when Frederick became King of Prussia, he offered Quantz over twice the amount that he was being paid in Dresden, along with exemption from duties in the opera orchestra, and an agreement that Quantz would only take orders from the King himself. In 1741, Quantz moved to Berlin, where his only duties were to oversee the Kings nightly private concerts, and to compose works for such concerts. Quantz alone was allowed to critique the Kings flute playing. It was this time in Berlin that allowed Quantz to write his masterpiece, Essay Toward a Method for Playing the Transverse Flute. This method book was not only a method for flutists, but a c...

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