Gebel, Johann Georg

1685-1750

German organist and composer; born at Breslau; was apprenticed as a boy to a tailor, but ran away at the age of eighteen and studied under the organists Tiburtius, Winkler and Krause. In 1709 he became organist at Brieg, where he studied under Stoltz, and in 1713 returned to Breslau to take a similar position. He possessed a mechanical turn of mind, and invented a clavichord with quarter-tones, and a clavicymbalum (or clavicembalo) with both manual and pedal keyboards. At the age of sixtyfour, though quite infirm, he succeeded his younger son as organist of the Breslau Church, the latter having to take another position; the next year he died. His compositions are a Passion oratorio; a mass with orchestral accompaniment; songs, chorals, and canons, including one for thirty voices; a number of pieces for organ, clavichord and other instruments.