Bach & Before

Stylus Fantasticus Sonatas of Bach, Buxtehude, Biber, Schmelzer & Bertali
Chatham Baroque


In 1650 the music theorist and polymath Athanasius Kircher wrote, "stylus fantasticus is especially suited to instruments. It is the most free and unrestrained method of composing, it is bound to nothing, neither to any word nor to a melodic subject..." By 1739, composer and theorist Johann Mattheson described it as  "now swift, now hesitating, now in once voice, now in many voices, now for a while behind the beat, without measure of sound, but not without the intent to please, to overtake and to astonish." 

  • Andrew Fouts - violin
  • Patricia Halverson - viola da gamba & violone
  • Scott Pauley - theorbo
  • Adam Pearl - chamber organ