I enjoy all types of music. However, Classical Music is to me, the epitome of man's ability to express themselves. It has expanded the envelope of expression to a very high level of feeling and emotion. I feel that Classical Music is a gift from God.
Music fills a central place in my life. I especially enjoy playing my french horn in the various orchestral and ensemble organizations of Woodland Productions. In his previous location, Mike was a member of the Walla Walla Symphony for at least 10 years. At the same time he was also a member of the Inland Northwest Orchestra, and the Walla Walla Brass Ensemble. Toward the end of his time at Walla Walla, Mike participated with the Oregon East Symphony and in addition, he was occationally asked to join the Mid Columbia Symphony as an extra to round out their horn section.
In the future, I will be recording myself on the horn using a program called Garage Band which will allow me to record myself playing complete pieces, one part at a time.
Presently, this page is dedicated to the sampling of music from some of my favorite composers. Another purpose of this site is to draw attention to some of the lesser known authors that I value.
Stoltzer is considered to be one of the most important German composers of the early sixteenth century. Yet we know very little about him.
Stoltzer followed in the footsteps of the composers, Josquin and Isaac, and possibly Heinrich Finck. He started in the courts of Hapsburg when he was in his late thirties, but later was the Music Director to King Louis of Hungary (Kapellmeister for King Ludwig II).
Queen Mary, the emperor's granddaughter, married Louis II when they were yet minors. Later, Mary who had an excellent musical education, was impressed with Stoltzer and thus pulled some strings to have Stoltzer as Kapellmeister. Louis himself was not interested in the arts at all.
Stoltzer was a very competent composer. It is said that he could memorize new music in one or two hearings and after hearing the new piece, he did not even have to make a full score, instead he would directly go to the writing of the separate parts for the performance.
Stoltzer was influenced by the Lutheran Reformation and had expressed clear sympathy for the Reformation. However it seems clear that his sympathy had its limits. When Helmann asked Stoltzer to stop saying masses, he continued until he left the city. It seems that he was payed through Breslau's clerical funds even after he left the city.
About 150 different compositions by Stoltzer are known. This is an amazing feat considering the short time he did his composing. Late in his life he wrote four different works, Psalms 12, 13, 37, and 86. All were motets set to Luther's works. Thus they were linked to the Reformation (These were works that were suggested by Queen Mary).
He probably died in the Turkish invasion of 1526. The king died while he was fleeing from the enemy. Stoltzer died in the same year. There is some reference that he could have drowned while running from the Turkish advances into the country.
After his death, one of Stoltzer's pupils may have taken the four psalms and other works to Wittenberg. Thus, Wittenberg became the center for Stoltzer's works in the sixteenth century. Quite a few composers, used Stoltzer as a model for their own work. That is how Stoltzer became the father of the German psalm motet style. He was a pioneer and was thereafter associated with the music of the Reformation.
My favorite music from Stoltzer is the first, second, third, and seventh movements of Octo tonorum melodiae. Those four movements have endeared me to Stoltzer; although, the other four movements are less spectacular.