Diderik Buxtehude, who died at 70 years of age in 1707, is not only a central composer in European baroque music, but the first Danish composer to become a big international name. With his musical imagination and originality he set new musical standards, and with his fusion of the learned, the playful and the groundbreaking he became one of J.S. Bach's highly admired forerunners and idols. He was born in Denmark and began his career in Helsingør and Helsingborg. At 31 years of age he managed to get the leading position as organist in Northern Europe in the Marienkirche in Lübeck, and for the rest of his life he lived and worked there. Unfortunately several of his main works have not survived, and only one authentic painting of him exists. But with the steadily growing interest in baroque music, his music now attracts great international attention. In Danish the literature about him is not extensive, although he might well now be the Danish composer whose music is most widespread worldwide.