The Lifespan of J.S Bach

Timeline created by rstevenson1983
In Music
  • Birth of Bach

    Bach was born in 1685 in Eisenach, the capital of the duchy of Saxe-Eisenach in Germany.
  • Schooling

    Bach belonged to a family of musicians who contributed substantially to his musical education, being taught the violin, clavichord, organ and theory. At the age of 14, he continued his formal education in the prestigious school of St Michael's in Luneburg, where, in addition to music, he was exposed to other academic areas.
  • 1st major position - Court of Weimar

    After several positions in different courts, including a short stint at the Court of Weimar, he decided to return to this court and remained here for 9 years. The court of Weimar included a large group of well trained musiciansallowing Bach to compose secular orchestral works. In addition to this, his post as organist allowed him to compose most his keyboard works. At the end of his tenure, for reasons generally unknown, Bach was imprisoned and discharged from his position in 1717.
  • 2nd major position - Court of Cothen

    Bach was employed as the kappellmeister at the Court of Cothen. Here, Bach's requirements for sacred music were minimal allowing him much more freedom to compose secular music. It was during this period when Bach composed his Brandenburg concertos along with orchestral suites, sonatas and partitas for violin, cello suites etc.
  • 3rd major position - St Thomas Church

    Bach remained at St Thomas' church in Leipzig for 27 years with various different roles. His most substantial role was that of composing cantatas for the Lutheran services and during this period it is estimated that he composed around 300 cantatas. He also directed the Collegium Musicum, which was a prestigious private group performing secular music.
  • Death

    In March 1750 Bach underwent 2 operations on his eye, but both operations were unsuccessful. During his last months he worked on 2 particular peices; a chorale Fantasia suitably titled 'Before Thy Throne O lord I Stand' and a fugue featuring a subject of B-A-C-H. It is believed that on the morning of 28th July 1750 he woke up and was amazed that he was able to see quite clearly, however later that afternoon he suffered from a stroke followed by a severe fever and passed away later that evening.