SAMUEL SCHEIDT (1587 - 1654)
The German organist and composer Samuel Scheidt was born in Halle in 1587 and represents the first generation of German composers in the Baroque period. He was court Kapellmeister at Halle, first to the Margrave of Brandenburg, and then, when conditions allowed once more in the course of the Thirty Years War, to Duke August of Saxony.
Scheidt wrote a large quantity of church music for the German Protestant liturgy. Latin compositions included settings of the Magnificat.
Scheidt's compositions for the organ include a number of pieces based on chorales. He also wrote fantasias, toccatas and dance movements for the instrument.
Scheidt also wrote a number of works for instrumental ensemble in various dance forms and published a volume of so-called Canons, suitable for a small group of instruments, demonstrating his skill in this aspect of the art of composition.