Graupner, Christoph


German composer; born at Kirchberg, Saxony; was a pupil of Kuhnau at St. Thomas's School in Leipsic for nine years. After a period of law study, was forced, in 1706, by the Swedish invasion, to flee to Hamburg, where he became accompanist to the opera under Keiser, and several years after was appointed vice-conductor to the Court at Darmstadt, succeeding to the principal conductorship later, in which connection he actively promoted a higher standard of music, both in church and in opera. He was an indefatigable worker, turning night into day at times, and engraving many of his own compositions. He lost the use of his eyes in 1750. His operas were produced as follows: Dido; Die lustige Hochzeit; Herkules and Theseus; Simson; Berenice and Lucio; Telemach; and Bestandigkeit besiegt Betrug. After 1719 he devoted himself to church and chambermusic, composing, it is said, before 1745, over thirteen hundred figured chorals and other pieces for the Schlosskirch in Darmstadt. Five works for clavier were published prior to 1733; and a prodigious number of works in manuscript, mostly instrumental, and including fifty concertos for different instruments, eighty overtures, and more than one hundred symphonies, sonatas and trios for various combinations of instruments, remain in the Court Library at Darmstadt.