Johann Caspar Ferdinand Fischer

Johann Caspar Ferdinand Fischer (some authorities use the spelling Johann Kaspar Ferdinand Fischer) (c. 1656 – 27 August 1746) was a German Baroque composer. Johann Nikolaus Forkel ranked Fischer as one of the best composers for keyboard of his day,[1] however, partly due to the rarity of surviving copies of his music, his music is rarely heard today.


Fischer seems to have been of Bohemian origin, possibly born at Schönfeld, but details about his life are sketchy. The first record of his existence is found in the mid-1690s: by 1695 he was Kapellmeister to Ludwig Wilhelm of Baden, and he may have remained with the court until his death in Rastatt.


Prelude and Chaconne
Performed on a clavichord by Joan Benson

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Much of Fischer's music shows the influence of the French Baroque style, exemplified by Jean Baptiste Lully, and he was responsible for bringing the French influence to German music. Fischer's harpsichord suites updated the standard Froberger model (Allemande - Courante - Sarabande - Gigue); he was also one of the first composers to apply the principles of the orchestral suite to the harpsichord, replacing the standard French ouverture with an unmeasured prelude. Both Bach and Handel knew Fischer's work and sometimes borrowed from it.

Many compositions by Fischer were published during his lifetime. These published pieces include:

Evidence exists of numerous lost works, among them an opera in Italian style, miscellaneous chamber works, court music and keyboard pieces.


  1. Forkel/Terry 1920/2011, pp. 10–11
  2. Comments made by harpsichordist William Porter during a 23 April 2006 performance of the Uranie suite at the Yale Collection of Musical Instruments


Wikimedia Commons has media related to Johann Caspar Ferdinand Fischer.
About the composer and his music
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 7/28/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.