Personalities | Georg Benda | Classical Era | Classical
(Ga-ôrg Ben’-da) 1722–95
Born at Staré Benátky in Bohemia into a family of musicians (his brother Franz was a violinist and composer at Frederick the Great’s court in Berlin), Benda went to Germany as a young man and spent most of his working career as Kapellmeister at Gotha; he retired in 1778. He is remembered chiefly for his German operas and especially his melodramas, in which a spoken text is illustrated by a highly expressive background of instrumental music. His Ariadne auf Naxos (1774), Medea and Romeo und Julie (1776) greatly impressed Mozart, who imitated their style in works of his own.
Harpsichord Concertos, Sabine Bauer, La Stagione Frankfurt (cond) Michael Schneider (CPO)
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