Irma Niskanen. Photo: Mark Niskanen.
Wed 28.6.2017 07.00 pm The Helsinki Cathedral Crypt, Helsinki
Helsinki Organ Summer

Father and sons

Music by Bach and his apprentices

J. S. Bach – C. P. E. Bach – Kirnberger

FiBO Players:
Irma Niskanen, violin
Petteri Pitko, harpsichord and organ


Besides being a composer and musician, Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750) was also a remarkable teacher. As the cantor at St. Thomas in Leipzig, his duties included teaching music to the boys at the St. Thomas School. Apart from them, he mentored many other promising musicians.

The most famous of Bach’s students were his own children, of which several became distinguished musicians. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (1714–1788) had a long career in Potsdam in the royal orchestra of the music-loving Frederick the Great, King of Prussia. C. P. E. Bach was a noticeable character in the musical life of nearby Berlin, and there he published his educational book An Essay on the True Art of Playing Keyboard Instruments, which documented the legacy of father Bach, too. 

Johann Philipp Kirnberger (1721–1783), who had studied for J. S. Bach in Leipzig in the 1730s and 1740s, also ended up in Berlin. Kirnberger played the violin in the royal orchestra of Potsdam, and later he worked in the famous Duchess Anna Amalia Library, managing the music collections. Kirnberger was known especially for his writings on music theory. He was a great admirer of the work of father Bach, and Kirnberger played an important role in safeguarding his musical legacy for the generations to come. 

Duration: 1 h (no intermission)

Free entry, program 8 €