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Canon in D
Johann Pachelbel

Meet...Johann Pachelbel 
     A German Baroque Composer who lived to be 52 years old.  

 Music is beautiful! Want to see?

Try singing Pachelbel’s “Canon in D.”

Excerpted, with permission from 
Sing Your Way to the Classics, Volume 1

Minuet in G

About Pachelbel's Canon in D

     Today, Pachelbel is best remembered for his music entitled “Canon in D,” which he wrote when he was twenty-six (around 1680). It is often heard at weddings and although originally written as a piece of chamber music for three violins and base, it has since been arranged for a wide variety of ensembles. The full German title is “Kanon und Gigue in D-Dur für drei Violinen und Basso Continuo” or “Canon and Gigue in D-Major for three Violins and a Continuous Bass.” The cello (or bass) line consists of a total of eight notes repeated over and over, joined with a three voice violin canon.

* A Glossary is provided for further explanation of musical terms.

Biography of Johann Pachelbel

     Born September 1, 1653, in Nuremberg, Germany, Johann Pachelbel grew up in one of the most culturally active areas in Europe. From early childhood, Pachelbel showed a gift for music, so his father enrolled him in lessons with two of the greatest instructors in the area; Pachelbel became a leading organist, composer and teacher. Pachelbel contributed a great deal to Protestant church music through his music for keyboard (specifically organ and harpsichord). He wrote a number of cantatas for the Lutheran Church and chamber sonatas for various instruments.

     At the age of sixteen, Pachelbel began his life as organist for different churches. One year later, in the spring of 1670, he enrolled in the Gymnasium Poeticum in Regensburg (the German equivalent of a high school, generally for university-bound students). The school's administration was so impressed by Pachelbel’s scholastic achievements that they gave him a scholarship and accepted him above and beyond their normal quota of students.

     Two important events happened in 1677, while he lived in Eisenach, Germany. (The rest of Pachelbel’s biography is included in the book.)



See more of our Music Appreciation and Biographical Song Lyrics

Many thanks to Power-Plus Learning, Inc. for permission to display this biography and music. 
© Power-Plus Learning, Inc. All rights reserved. Used with permission.


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