JOHANN RUDOLF AHLE (1625 - 1673)
Born in Mühlhausen, Johann Rudolf Ahle had his schooling in Göttingen, before going on to study theology at Erfurt University. He won a reputation as an organist, serving as organist at St Blasius in his native town (a position later to be held, briefly, by Johann Sebastian Bach). Ahle was clearly a citizen of some local importance and became mayor of Mühlhausen shortly before his death.
Ahle’s compositions chiefly comprise sacred vocal music in the characteristic Lutheran forms of the time, influenced by elements of Italian styles. This influence is notable in his vocal concertos, with solo voices accompanied by instrumental ensembles. His chorale melodies include Liebster Jesu, wir sind hier (‘Blessed Jesu! here we stand’), among others that are still widely known.