After a long and incredibly productive life, Tellemann died in 1767 at the age of 86 – oh, an in his spare time, he had published his own music.
Now, the road leads back to Zimmermann’s Kaffeehaus. In 1702, Tellemann founded the Collegium Musicum which was hosted – at no charge – by Gottfried Zimmerman. Admittance was also free, and herr Zimmermann was able to profit by the patrons’ proclivities for beautiful music and really good coffee. One of the habituees was none other than Johann Sebastian Bach, who took over the Collegium Musicum in 1729 and directed its productions of recitals and chamber music (see? You knew I’d get to chamber music eventually!) until 1739. The music essentially died with Zimmermann in 1741, but the building existed on Kathrinenstrasse until the bombing of Leipzing during World War II. It was, sadly, reduced at last to rubble.
All of the above at long last brings up the Coffee Cantata by Bach – see the connection? Think about the ladies – yes, ladies were allowed to attend the musical events at Zimmermann’s – and gentlemen in their satins and lace thoroughly enjoying their coffee and some of the most remarkable, enduring music the world has ever known.
By the way, you too will enjoy some of the most remarkable, enduring music in the world (sans coffee) at San Antonio Chamber Music Society concerts. This season will conclude at Temple Beth-El with “Calmus” – an a cappella vocal quintet from Germany, singing music inspired by Shakespeare. You are going to love it!
– E Doyle