Johann Stamitz


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Stamitz, Johann

 

(also Jan Václav Antonín Stamic). Born June 19, 1717, in Havlíčkův-Brod; died Mar. 27,1757, in Mannheim. Czech composer, violinist, and conductor.

Stamitz studied music both with his father and at a Jesuit school in Jihlava. He worked in Prague. In 1744 he became first violinist of the Mannheim orchestra and in 1748 the orchestra’s concertmaster and director of chamber music. He made appearances in German cities and in Paris as a virtuoso violinist and conductor. Stamitz was the leader of the Mannheim school of music.

As a performer and composer, Stamitz reflected the artistic ideals of the Enlightenment and the traditions of Czech folk music in his work. He composed 74 symphonies, as well as orchestral trios and instrumental concertos, sonatas, capriccios, duets, and church music. He developed the sonata form and dynamic orchestral effects, introduced dramatic and heroic elements and thematic contrasts, and included French horns and clarinets in the orchestra. His students included his sons Carl and Anton and C. Cannabich.

REFERENCES

Belza, I. Istoriia cheshskoi muzykal’noi kul’tury, vol. 1. Moscow, 1959.
Pospiäil, A. KolemJan Václava Stamice. [Havlícküv-Brod] 1947.
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In the years that followed, virtually all the articles on Stamic published in magazines would draw upon the statements with which Riemann rounded off his generalising conclusions: "There is no doubt: Johann Stamitz is the long-sought forerunner of Haydn
Abel, Johann Stamitz, and a host of lesser-known composers.
Johann Stamitz was not music director in Mannheim when Mozart sought employment there in 1777, because he had died in 1757 (47).
Johann Stamitz was influential in the Mannheim School, a group of 18th-century composers in Germany, and helped shape the form of the sonata, paving the way for Haydn's and Mozart's efforts in that genre.
Johann Stamitz contributes a charming Violin Concerto, Anton Filtz a rewarding Cello Concerto (with an andante which surely stayed in Mozart's subconscious for many of his most sombre movements) and Christian Cannabich a richly-scored Sinfonia Concertante with flute, oboe and bassoon as soloists; only one movement of this last-named, however, and the penny-pinching insert throws no light on this - nor indeed anything on this most pleasant release.
However, the instrument made frequent appearances in Paris during the 1740s and 1750s, notably in the operas of Rameau and in the symphonies of Johann Stamitz, which were composed for the Concert Spirituel in the 1750s.
In 1724 Count Franz Anton von Sporck, a leading nobleman of German ancestry, founded an opera theatre in his palace which produced Italian operas regularly for the next decade and was highly influential in the spread of opera in central Europe, possibly providing the Prague residents Gluck and Johann Stamitz with their first taste of the genre.
A Collegium Musicum for the performance of the chamber music and symphonies of Johann Sebastian Bach, Joseph Haydn, Johann Stamitz, and other European composers was established at Bethlehem, Pa.
1743-48), like Friedrich H "the Great," was an accomplished flutist; he named Johann Stamitz (1717-57) concertmaster in 1745, and within two decades Leopold Mozart praised the orchestra as "without doubt, the best in Germany" (p.
229); Johann Stamitz was not in Paris for the first time in 1750 (he means 1751; p.