Georg Christoph Biller

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Georg Christoph Biller
Born (1955-09-20) 20 September 1955 (age 61)
Nebra
Occupation

Georg Christoph Biller (born 20 September 1955) is a German choral conductor. He conducted the Thomanerchor as the sixteenth Thomaskantor since Johann Sebastian Bach from 1992 to 2015. He is also a baritone, an academic teacher and a composer.

Career[edit]

Born in Nebra, Biller was a Thomaner, a member of the Thomanerchor, from 1965 to 1974 with Erhard Mauersberger and Hans-Joachim Rotzsch.[1]

He studied at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater „Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy“ Leipzig from 1976 until 1981, orchestral conducting with Rolf Reuter (de) and Kurt Masur, and voice. He was a teacher for choral conducting at the Hochschule für Musik Detmold in 1991.[1]

In November 1992, George Christoph Biller was appointed Thomaskantor as the 16th successor of Bach in this position.[1] Under his direction, the choir performed regularly three times a week in St. Thomas, "Motette" every Friday evening at 6 and every Saturday afternoon at 3, typically including a Bach cantata, and service on Sundays at 9 o'clock.[2]

In January 1994 Biller was appointed professor of choral conducting at the Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy Hochschule. In May 1996 he became a member of the Sächsische Akademie der Künste (Academy of Arts of Saxony).[1]

Biller resigned as Thomaskantor in January 2015 for health reasons.[3]

Special projects[edit]

In 2000 he prepared the Thomanerchor for a collaboration with the Knabenchor Hannover for a recorded performance in Hannover of Bach's St Matthew Passion.

In 2009 he initiated that the cantatas of Bach's Christmas Oratorio were performed in St. Thomas and St. Nicholas in services for the six feast days of the Christmas season as Bach had intended it 275 years earlier.[4]

On Good Friday 2010 he conducted Bach's St Matthew Passion in the Thomaskirche with Martin Petzold as the Evangelist, Klaus Mertens (words of Jesus), Ute Selbig, Britta Schwarz, Martin Lattke, Thomas Laske, the Thomanerchor and the Gewandhausorchester.[5][6]

Selected recordings[edit]

Selected compositions[edit]

  • Der apostolische Segen (The apostolic blessing)
  • Naunhofer Choralbuch (Naunhof book of chorales)
  • Responsorien
  • Gesänge nach Worten von Clemens Brentano (songs after Clemens Brentano)
  • 7 Lieder aus Stille (Seven songs from silence)
  • Psalmen David (Psalms of David)
  • Eine kleine Thomasmusik (alluding to Mozart's Eine kleine Nachtmusik, 2000)
  • Der Nebraer Himmelspsalm (The Nebra heavenly psalm)[7]
  • Res severa verum gaudium (a round)
  • Herr, tue meine Lippen auf (Lord, open my lips)
  • Verleih uns Friede (Grant us peace)
  • In einem Glauben (In one faith, 2009)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Georg Christoph Biller on the bach-cantatas website
  2. ^ Gottesdienste und Motetten (Services and Motets) on the website of the Thomaskirche (in German)
  3. ^ Leipziger Thomaskantor legt Amt nieder (in German) MDR Sachsen 18 January 2015
  4. ^ 275 Jahre Weihnachtsoratorium (Christmas Oratorio 275 years) on the website of the Evangelisch-Lutherische Landeskirche Sachsens, 20 December 2009 (in German)
  5. ^ Veranstaltungen Leipziger Kirchen (Events in Leipzig churches) on the website of the Lutheran Church District Leipzig (in German)
  6. ^ Entrückt und doch im Glauben geerdet: Die Matthäuspassion der Thomaner review in German
  7. ^ Motette in der Thomaskirche 30 September 2005 (in German)

External links[edit]