Bach FAQ 50

 

Was Johann Sebastian Bach Happy With All of His Jobs?

 

Yes, in the very beginning Johann Sebastian Bach was happy with all of his workplaces.

 

Seriously, the first one surely doesn't count, when he for the first time and just six months was making music at the court of Duke Ernst in Weimar. Otherwise he wouldn't have moved as early as after half a year already. His first "real" job was the position of an organist in Arnstadt and the negative highlights in this era of his life were a vacation, which Johann Sebastian Bach really extended much, an almost fatal dispute with one of his choir students, when his employer didn't support Bach in this matter. Finally there was the back then enormity that Bach let a woman sing, that is to say perform inside a church. That worsened the relationship between Bach and his employer so much, that Bach decided to move on to Muehlhausen. Actually Bach was happy with his workplace in Muehlhausen first, but he suffered from a fight between two contrary religious currents and he moved on again after a short time. Finally it was in Weimar, when he managed to stay long nine years and he probably was happy here most of the time with his choice. But finally, when they run over him, when it was his turn to become the next band leader, he decided to move on to Koethen. However he "forgot" to ask for permission to leave, didn't accept the problem and the duke sent him behind bars for four weeks because of "stubbornness".

 

In Koethen Bach liked the town, he liked his life and he liked his workplace so much, that it's mentioned in a letter, by the way the only personal letter of Bach to friend Georg Erdmann, that he could imagine himself in that location for the rest of his life. However, absolutely unexpected Bach's wife Maria Barbara had died, when he returned from a trip to Carlsbad with his sovereign. As more things changed dramatically in Bach's life in Koethen, he decided to move to Leipzig.

 

In Leipzig Bach's life was joyless for twenty-seven years with an exception of four years only. This last era of his life ended with the sad peak in the fight with his employer when the city council already decided to look for a follower in the office of Bach, when it still wasn't clear, whether Johann Sebastian Bach might manage to recover again.

 

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