On Sun, 15 Nov 1998, Hinrich Muller wrote:
> Quick question:
> What is the consensus on pitch at the Thomaskirche during JS Bach's
> tenure there?
Well I would be surprised if we get consensus on anything, but I do seem
to vaguely remember a couple of relevant tidbits on this one.
I seem to recall that someone studied remnants of he pipe organs and found
that the four churches Bach oversaw had pitches for "A" from as low as a
modern g natural to as high as a modern b flat. And Thomas was the lower
one. This is used to explain the odd fact that there exist for many
cantates a seperate set of wind parts a whole tone higher.
Bach would write a cantate for the main church, then it would be performed
in the secondary churches during the following sundays. The singers and
strings could simply adjust and tune to the higher organs, but the winds
needed transposed parts.