Schwencke, Christian Friedrich Gottlieb



German musician; born at Wachenhausen, in the Harz Mountains. His father, Johann Gottlieb Schwencke (1744-1823), was an excellent bassoonplayer, town musician of Hamburg and the founder of a musical family. He was Christian's first teacher, but later Marpurg and Kirnberger instructed him in composition and organ. In 1789 he succeeded Philipp Emanuel Bach as cantor and musical director of St. Catherine's, at  Hamburg, a post which he retained until his death. He frequently contributed to the Allgemeine Musikalische Zeitung, in which his setting to a Klopstock Ode was published in 1799. His first compositions were pieces for piano and flute, and songs. Among his best works are numerous cantatas; two oratorios; a psalm, paternoster; motets; and many other sacred compositions; six grand fugues; and sonatas. He rescored Handel's Messiah and Bach's mass in B minor.