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The Baroque Era

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Cody Boling

on 4 November 2013

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Transcript of The Baroque Era

The Baroque Era
1600 - 1750
Various Meanings
Elaborately Ornamented
Age of Absolution
rulers used absolute power over subjects
divided into 3 phases
Early (1600 - 1640)
Middle (1640 - 1680)
Late (1680-1750)
texts written to convey emotion
Text ruled music
Most of the music we know of today came from the latest era of the baroque
The Baroque Orchestra
performing group based on violin family
10 - 30 (small compared to today)
Instrument make-up:
basso continuo
harpsichord, cello, bass, bassoon
upper strings
1st and 2nd Violins & violas

Rhythmic patterns heard at beginning of piece were repeated throughout
creates a compelling drive and energy
forward motion rarely interrupted
beat more emphasized than Renaissance
creates a feeling of continuity
opening melody will be heard again and again
even when varied, its character tends to remain constant
impression of dynamic expansion rather than of balance or symmetry
level tends to stay constant for a stretch of time
sudden shift, physically stepping from one level to another
terraced dynamics - alteration between loud and soft
Gradual changes through crescendo and decrescendo are not prominent features of baroque music

Chords and Basso Continuo
Unity of Mood
expresses one basic mood
begins joyful will remains joyful
Affections: Joy, grief, agitation
Moods = specific rhythms and melodic patterns associated
Vocal Music - prime exception to the whole mood
Main Keyboard Instruments
Three Main Types:
Organ - no dynamic changes
Harpsichord - no dynamic changes
Clavichord - gradual changes
produced sound by means of brass blades striking the strings
home - use
predominately polyphonic
Soprano and Bass lines most important
Imitation very common
Chord became important
mesh with melodic line
interest in chords gave prominence to bass parts
Basso Continuo
Basso - Continuo
played by 2 instruments
keyboard instrument
low melodic instrument
left-hand: plays basso continuo
right-hand: improvised chords using figured bass
Emphasizes the bass part
Words and Music
used music to depict the meaning of specific words
Heaven - high tone
hell - low tone
chromatic scale - pain, grief
rapid notes on a single syllable of text

Characteristics of Baroque Music
Baroque Forms
Movement: a piece that sounds fairly complete and independent but is part of a larger composition
3-part Form (ABA)
2-part form (AB)
Full transcript