If people are innocent of the name of Christoph Graupner in Vienna or anywhere else in Austria this should be neither a surprise nor anything to be ashamed of, because the sphere of influence of this contemporary of Johann Sebastian Bach and Johann Joseph Fux was in faraway Darmstadt, a small residence capital of the landgrave in Hesse about twenty miles south of Frankfurt. What is more, Graupner never visited Vienna in his life. Graupner’s employer Ernst Ludwig was an opera enthusiast; after becoming acquainted with the young harpsichordist and composer Graupner – who had received his musical education in Leipzig – some time in the period from autumn 1706 and 1708 at the Hamburg Gänsemarkt Opera House, Ernst Ludwig appointed him Kapellmeister in Darmstadt in 1709. The court household there was that of a comparatively small landgrave, Protestant in inclination – one of the numerous German principalities in the German Lands. But in his ambition for prestige and luxurious pastimes – particularly hunting – the Darmstadt regent by no means took second place even to the pre-eminent courts. Thus in 1723, he secured Graupner’s presence in Darmstadt for life by a generous rise in salary, which made the court Kapellmeister the best paid orchestra director of his time and simultaneously stopped Graupner from taking off to Leipzig, where he had been offered the post of Thomaskantor, the choirmaster of St Thomas’s. Another thirty-seven years were to pass in the service of the Darmstadt landgrave before Graupner eventually died in 1760; he had gone blind, thus in the last six years of his life could no longer actively direct the fortunes of the orchestra.