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Hans-Joachim Rotzsch

Hans-Joachim Rotzsch (25 April 1929 – 25 September 2013) was a German choral conductor, conducting the Thomanerchor from 1972 until 1991 as the fifteenth Thomaskantor since Johann Sebastian Bach.[1] He was also a tenor and an academic.


Hans-Joachim Rotzsch was born in Leipzig and educated from 1940 to 1945 at the Musisches Gymnasium Frankfurt, directed by Kurt Thomas. In 1949 he began to study church music at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater „Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy“ Leipzig, learning organ with Günther Ramin.[2]

Rotzsch became known as an oratorio tenor. In 1972 he was appointed professor at the Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy Hochschule. From 1972 until 1991 he was the Thomaskantor, as the 15th successor of Bach in this position.[2]

In 1992 he became a guest professor for Protestant church music at the Mozarteum University of Salzburg, where he taught until 2000.


  • Kurt Meyer: Der Fünfzehnte nach Bach. Thomaskantor Hans Joachim Rotzsch; Schkeuditzer Buchverlag, 2002; ISBN 3-9806705-4-6

Selected recordings


External links

  • Wir Salzburger geben unseren Thomaskantor nicht wieder her. interview in the Leipziger Volkszeitung, 4 June 1998 (in German)
  • Paulus in Hamburg", Hamburger Abendblatt, 18 February 1988 (in German)
  • WorldCat

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