Hey Kids, Meet Johann Sebastian Bach | Composer Biography

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Hey Kids, Meet Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach (Baptized 1685-1750) German Baroque Era Composer

Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany in 1685. As a child, Bach's father taught him to play violin and harpsichord. One of his uncles, Johann Christoph Bach, introduced him to the art of organ playing.

In 1707, Bach married his second cousin Maria Barbara Bach. They had seven children.

In 1708 Bach became the court composer, organist, and Konzertmeister (instrument-playing leader of the orchestra) of the Weimar orchestra for the Duke of Weimar. When the Kapellmeister (conductor of an orchestra or choir) died in 1716, Bach asked about taking this job, but the duke appointed someone else. When Bach asked to be released from the Duke's service he put Bach in jail for four weeks before finally dismissing him.

In 1717 Bach accepted a new post as the Kapellmeister for Prince Leopold of Köthen. He was a very nice person to work for and very musical. However, the organ was not very good so Bach did not write organ music during this time. Instead, Bach focused on composing for the orchestra. During his six-year post in Köthe, Maria died, and Bach married Anna Magdalena Wilcke. Bach had 13 more children with Anna Magdalena and became the father of 20 children.

In 1723, Bach became the cantor, organist, and music composer for St. Thomas Lutheran Church in Leipzig, Germany. Bach remained there for the rest of his life and focused on composing choral works.

Johann Sebastian Bach died in 1750. He was considered an "old-fashioned" composer during his lifetime, and almost forgotten after his death. He is most remembered for his Brandenburg Concertos, the Well-Tempered Clavier, and the celebrated organ work Toccata and Fugue in D Minor. Today, Bach is considered such an important composer that the year of his death is a defining point in music history. It marks the end of the Baroque Era.


Watch a Video

Watch a performance of Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor for organ.




Print Related Resources for Johann Sebastian Bach


Piano Books for Kids

Bach | Meet the Composer Series Piano Book, Vol. 4


Beginner and Easy Piano Sheet Music

Minuet in G Beginner Piano Sheet Music/Level 1
Musette in D Beginner Piano Sheet Music/Level 1
Aria from Suite in D Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 3
Toccata in D Minor Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 3
May the Sheep Freely Graze Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 4
Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Minuet in D Minor Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Minuet in G (1) Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Minuet in G (2) Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Minuet in G Minor Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Musette in D for Intermediate/Level 5 Piano Solo
Siciliano Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5
Toccata in D Minor Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 5


Easy Guitar Sheet Music

Minuet in G (1) for Guitar Solo (Notation)
Minuet in G (2) for Guitar Solo (Notation and Tab)


Music Classroom Resources for Johann Sebastian Bach (Famous Composers)

Bach | Music Lesson Plan and Bulletin Board Bundle
Bach | Bulletin Board Poster Pack
Musette in D | Play-Along Orff Orchestration
Toccata in D Minor (Bach) | Listening Map
Toccata in D Minor (Bach) | Listening Glyph
Toccata and Fugue in D Minor | Music Lesson Plan
Meet the Composer Job Application Worksheet
Johann Sebastian Bach Multiplication Connect-the-Dot
Johann Sebastian Bach | Word Search Worksheet
Johann Sebastian Bach Coloring Page
Great Composer Farm | Lead Sheet
Beethoven at Bat™ | Music Composer Board Game (Digital Print)


Homeschool Music Lesson Plans for Johann Sebastian Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach | Homeschool Music Lesson Plans


Kids Songs for Johann Sebastian Bach

Great Composer Farm | Easy Piano Sheet Music/Level 2
Great Composer Farm | Lead Sheet
Great Composer Farm | Kids Song Lyrics