Reusner (or Reussner), Esaias

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Reusner (or Reussner), Esaias

Reusner (or Reussner), Esaias , esteemed German lutenist and composer; b. Löwenberg, Silesia, April 29, 1636; d. Cölin, Berlin, May 1, 1679. A child prodigy, he studied lute with his father, then entered the service of the Swedish general Count Wittenberg in Breslau as a page when he was about 12. After a year in the service of the household of the royal war commissioner Müllner, he became a valet at the Polish court of Princess Radzi will (1651), where he continued his lute training. After returning to Breslau in 1654, he was named lutenist to Georg III, duke of Silesia, in 1655. He then taught lute at the Univ. of Leipzig (1672–73), and subsequently served as a chamber musician at the court of the Elector Friedrich Wilhelm of Brandenburg in Berlin (1674–79). He was a significant figure in the development of the German lute school of composition, being the first German composer to adapt the French lute style. A few of his works have been ed. in Das Erbe Deutscher Musik, Ist series, XII (1939).


G. Sparmann, E. Reusner und die Lauten-Suite (diss., Univ. of Berlin, 1926).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire