Biber, Heinrich Ignaz Franz
After earlier service with the Prince-Bishop of Olmütz, the Bohemian virtuoso violinist and composer Heinrich Biber lived the last 24 years of his life at the Archbishop court of Salzburg. Biber's 15 Rosary Sonatas for violin and basso continuo (with unaccompanied violin Passacaglia), and the curious Battalia for string orchestra, with its mock shooting and intoxicated troops, are among a variety of fascinating compositions. He makes extensive use of scordatura in the sonatas and his Harmonia artificiosa-ariosa for a limited group of musicians, with the violin resonating to have numerous sonorities and peculiar chordal results. For liturgical usage, Biber often supplied sacred music, leading to an accomplishment that labels him as one of his day's most excellent Austrian composers.
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