Michael Praetorius (probably February 15, 1571 ? February 15, 1621) was a German composer, organist, and writer on music. He was one of the most prolific and versatile composers of his time, and was particularly significant in the development of musical forms based on Protestant hymns.
He was born in Creuzburg and studied in Torgau, Frankfurt (Oder) and Zerbst. He was organist at the Marienkirche in Frankfurt before working at the court in Wolfenbüttel as organist and (from 1604) Kapellmeister. From 1613 to 1616 he worked at the Saxon court at Dresden, where he was exposed to the latest Italian music, including the polychoral works of the Venetian School. His subsequent development of the form of the chorale concerto, particularly the polychoral variety, resulted directly from his familiarity with the music of such Venetians as Giovanni Gabrieli. (Hide extended text) ... (Read all) Source : Wikipedia