Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672)

The story of the false servant is not, on the surface, a likely candidate for musical setting. In "Du Schalksknecht," Schütz uses six low instruments to accompany the high tenor. He achieves a groveling and murky sonority perfect for the perfidious servant. Notice how subtly the big climax at the end is achieved by means of tightening the screws of the counterpoint.

©John Harbison

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