Baroque style; general characteristics
- Over the top ornamentation
- Heavy use of contrast
- Bold use of color and instrumental sound
- Mostly low pitches and high pitches, not much mid range
Classical Style; General characteristics
- Sought to reinstitute aesthetic values of ancient Greeks and Romans by incorporating balance and harmonious proportions.
- Balanced phrases, clear textures, easily audible musical forms.
- Light in tone and less pretentious or predictable than Baroque
- Tuneful single style with short phrases that are organized in antecedent consequent pairs.
- Dominantly homophonic
- Capacity for rapid change and endless fluctuation. Melodic style and texture can change within a few short bars.
- Bass driven chordal support in Baroque music
- Played by one or more instruments
The word "Baroque"
- Taken from the Portuguese word Barroco referring to a pearl of irregular shape then used in jewelry and fine decorations.
- Indicates excessive ornamentation in the visual arts and a rough, bold instrumental sound in music.
Repetition of a musical motive at successively higher or lower degrees of the scale.
The practice of shifting the volume of a sound suddenly from one level to another.
- Can be traced to late 16th century Italy from progressive musicians and intellectuals in the cities of Florence, Mantua, and Venice.
- Pursued the goal of late Renaissance humanism, recapture the expressive power of Greek music.
- In an attempt to imitate the ancient Greeks, fathers of Western opera strove to create a theatrical medium in which drama might be projected through intensified vocal recitations.
- Italian for "song"
- Type of monody that is more expansive, and more tuneful than a recitative, also tends to have a clear meter and more regular rhythms.
- Says what the character feels about events in the plot.
From Italian word recitativo. Musically heightened speech, through which the plot of the opera is communicated to the audience
The text of an opera, normally written by a poet working in collaboration with the composer.
Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)
- A musical genius during the Baroque period.
- His first opera Orfeo is the first important opera in the history of western music.
- Accepted position of maestro di capella at Saint Mark's in Venice to write church music but continued to compose opera.
- A female composer in the Baroque period.
- Published six collections of cantatas, more than any other composer of the early Baroque, each dedicated to a member of the high nobility.
- Has been called the "greatest of all English Composers"
- his opera Dido and Aeneas was among the first operas written in the English language.
Baroque orchestra instrumentation
- Impressive variety of instruments at beginning of 17th century but usually no more than one or two of each type..
- String ensemble dominated the orchestra. violins, violas, cellos, and the double bass.
- Woodwinds, flute, oboe, bassoon usually in pairs.
- Sometimes trumpets, and timpani's.
- Toward the end was french horn.
- Basso continuo provided by harpsichord to play chords and one or two low string instruments to play bass line.
Jean-Baptiste Lully (1632-1687)
- Hired by Louis XIV to direct music at the chord in Versailles.
- Built orchestra around nucleus of 24 string players.
- Set in place the core of the modern orchestra.
- Created the French overture which consists of two sections, first a slow duple meter, with stately dotted rhythms, and second in a fast triple meter featuring much imitation.
- When a small group of soloists work together, performing as a unit against the full orchestra.
- Concertino is the smaller group
- tutti is when the two groups play together.
All or part of the main theme, the ritornello, returns again and again, invariably played by the tutti. In between a soloist inserts fragments and extensions of ritornello theme in virtuosic fashion.
- Most influential in creating the Baroque concerto
- Wrote and produced nearly fifty operas which made him rich.
- Wrote Violin Concerto in E major, Opus 8. "The Spring"
- First to popularize ritornello form
Fugue, and its parts
- A contrapuntal form and procedure that flourished during late Baroque era.
- A composition for two, three, four, or five parts played or sung by voices or instruments, which begins with a presentation of a subject in imitation in each part (exposition), continues with modulating passages of free counterpoint (episodes) and further appearances of the subject, and ends with a strong affirmation of the tonic key.
J.S. Bach; musical influences
- Largely self-taught.
- Studied Corelli, Vivaldi, Pachelbel, and even Palestrina.
- Master of counterpoint.
A showy passage for soloist alone toward the end of a movement in a concerto.
Baroque period time frame
Classical period time frame
A spiritual melody or religious folk-song of the Lutheran Church, a hymn for other denominations.
George Frideric Handel (1685-1759)
- Played water music in 1717. Water music is a dance suite, a collection of dances, usually from two to seven in number, all in one key and for one group of instruments, whether an orchestra, soloist, etc.
- Brought Italian opera to England and wrote 2 dozen Italian opera seria
- Moved to oratorio after opera seemed unprofitable.
- Most famous oratorio is Messiah (1741)
- Italian for tail.
- Added at the end of a movement to wrap things up.
- Can be long or short.
- Most end with a final cadence in which the harmonic motion slows down to just to chords, dominant and tonic, played over and over.
Came in because it had more dynamics than harpsichord.
Mozart added clarinet as woodwind sections grew to balance growth of strings. Mozart was fond of the Clarinet and introduced it into his symphonies as early as 1778.
- A city with rich musical life. Where Mozart chose to be a freelance musician.
- Attracted musicians from throughout Europe.
Sonata-allegro, and its parts
- ABA plan.
- B section provides contrast in mood, key, and thematic treatment.
- A is called the exposition
- B is called development
- Return to A is called the recapitulation
Theme and Variations
When a melody is altered, decorated, or adorned in some way by changing pitch, rhythm, harmony, or even major or minor mode.
- Must have at least three statements of the refrain (A) and at least two contrasting sections (at least B and C). Often placement of refrain creates symmetrical patterns such as ABACA of ABACABA
- Often used for the finale of a sonata, quartet, or symphony.
A multimovement work for solo instrument or solo instrument with keyboard accompaniment.
a motive of phrase in the bass that is repeated again and again
Franz Joseph Haydn
- One of the first great composers to move to Vienna.
- Hired by the Esterházy family which where the richest and most influential German-speaking aristocrats of Hungary.
- Wrote the twelve London Symphonies
- Received honorary degree of doctor of music at Oxford and celebrity status.
- Influential creator of mature Classical style String quartet
- 104 Symphonies
- Introduced theme and variations in the genre.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
- Born in Austria
- Incredible musicianship
- Child prodigy.
- Most famous works:
- A Little Night Music, 1787
- Symphony No. 40, 1788
“When I am Laid in Earth,” Purcell
One of the First Opera's written in English
“Organ Fugue in G minor,” J.S. Bach
“Variations on Ah Vous dirai-je Maman,” Mozart
Theme and Variation