Jörgen Presten

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Aliases: Jürgen Preston; Georgio Preston



Died: 1553


Jörgen Presten was a composer, presumably of Scottish origin, active in Denmark. There can be little doubt that he is the ‘Georgius Preston Scotus’ who graduated as magister from the University of Copenhagen on May 14, 1545. He was leader of the kantori, the choir of the royal chapel of Christian III, in 1551, and two years later died of the plague.

Presten was the most productive of the foreign composers at the Danish court: 19 works attributed to him survive, comprising six Latin motets, ten German hymns and three instrumental fugae or canons. In the Copenhagen source all the vocal pieces are untexted except Peccavimus tibi, which has the text in the bass. Ten of the pieces are cantus-firmus settings, with the cantus firmus in short phrases, without ornamentation, in the tenor. Imitation is sometimes used at the beginnings of phrases but is not pursued, and there is rarely any overall sense of structure. In the eight-voice Christ ist erstanden the melody is sung by the two highest voices in canon while the other voices accompany them with free counterpoint.

View the Wikipedia article on Jörgen Presten.

List of choral works

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