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Praetorius: Terpsichore, Entry And Courante

Can you guess this piece? Here’s a hint: It’s a Renaissance dance party!

Back in 16th and 17th century Germany, it was actually fashionable for German families with the last name of “Schultz” and other derivations of that name to use its Latin equivalent, “Praetorious.” The family of Michael Schultheiß, or Michael Praetorius as we know him, was one of the families who took on this trend. Michael Praetorius first studied theology in 1585 before turning to a life in music. He worked several jobs as an organist, Kapellmeister and court composer both to the city of Frankfurt as well as to several noble German families. While mostly known for his vast repertoire of sacred music, Praetorius’ most well-known work is Terpsichore. Fittingly named after the Muse of Dance, Terpsichore is a compendium of over 300 stylized dances that existed during Praetorius’ era. The collection is not only Praetorius’ most well-known work, but it is also his only surviving piece of secular music

Music Heard On This Episode

Michael Praetorius: Entry and Courante from Terpsichore
Collegium Terpsichore — From the Vault: Dance Music of the High Renaissance (Boston Skyline, 1994)
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album cover
Michael Praetorius: Entry and Courante from Terpsichore
Collegium Terpsichore — From the Vault: Dance Music of the High Renaissance (Boston Skyline, 1994)
Buy from Amazon »
album cover

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