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Music History: A Brief Synopsis
Transcript of Music History: A Brief Synopsis
Why study Music History?
In Your Journal, respond to the following quote:
"Music is the universal language of mankind."
-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Middle Ages (450-1400)
Why such a long span of time in one era?
The Middle Ages are often referred to as "Dark Ages" or "Medieval."
Knowledge is exponential, so progress is slow during this time.
Music is organized for the first time, so we start our journey here...
- Means "rebirth." In your journal speculate why this time period would be called rebirth.
If it ain't Baroque, don't fix it!
The Classical Era
The reason we have the genre "classical" era
An expansion on the Baroque Era
Created By: Bethany Maples
-What does the quote mean?
-How has music changed throughout history?
Music of the Middle Ages
The Middle Ages was a time of plain chant. Music as we know it today began it's lengthy journey in this era.
- Gregorian Chant and Hildegard Von Bingen
-Troubadours and trouveres
-Notre Dame and Guillame de Machaut
Three classes: nobility, clergy, and peasantry.
-nobility: very protected; castles
-peasantry: Majority of the population
-clergy: church people
The Church (clergy)
The Roman Catholic Church was the musical ruler at the time. It was a time of kings and queens. It was a time of the class system. It was a time of religion. The Roman Catholic Church was the musical ruler at the time.
Secular music in the middle ages
Secular music was composed by and for nobles. The secular movement started in France.
The people who wrote secular music wrote about love stories, and they were called Troubadours and Trouveres.
Troubadours and Trouveres
Largely wrote songs of unrequited love.
School of Notre Dame
The school at Notre Dame began in 1163. Although there was much learning going on, it was not a traditional school. It was a place for those with a desire to advance music to work together.
Through their work, we received POLYPHONY.
Music History Eras
1. Middle Ages (450-1450)
2. Renaissance (1450-1600)
3. Baroque (1600-1750)
4. Classical (1750-1820)
5. Romantic (1820 - 1900)
6. 20th Century and Beyond (1900-present)
-Named for Pope Gregory I, the Great (r. 590-604)
- All melodies were set to religious Latin texts picked by clergy.
- Many composers were Monks
Monophonic - everyone is doing the same thing at the same time; one sound.
Part of TEXTURE!!
Hildegard Von Bingen (1098-1179)
-A nun, and most popular composer of Gregorian chant.
- A visionary with the most diverse chants of the era.
- Wrote the first musical drama: "Ordo Virtutum"
- Known for dramatic embellishments with solo lines.
- from Germany
Music of the middle ages started to change greatly with the insurgence of
melodic music. Theses composers could take great liberties in the thirteen and fourteen centuries. The movement soon spread to Italy and accross Europe.
(many sounds) singers and instrumentation are not doing the same thing. Each has a different melody that harmonizes.
Characteristics of music
The words of vocal music were more important than the sound. Music was written to compliment the meaning of the text. (text painting)
Texture is largely polyphonic
Flowing in rhythm and melody.
Important information of the Renaissance
Motet (a polyphonic or homophonic work set to Latin text not found in the Mass)
Important Sacred Renaissance Composers
Josquin Desprez (motets)
Palestrina (flowing melodic texture)
Madrigal - a piece for several solo voices to sing a poem. Usually about love. Combines homophonic and polyphonic textures.
**Small group singing**
Started in Spain and moved to England once published (1588)
Thomas Weelkes (English)
Thomas Morley (English)
"Now is the month of
Usually involved the harpsichord (piano's predecessor), harp, or lute.
Intended for dancing.
Important facts to know
-"Baroque" means bizarre or elegant
-Aristocracy takes over in power
-Louis XIV in Versailles
- Known as age of absolutism
- Emotions are highlighted, but only one per piece.
- Melody and Rhythm compose repeated patterns
-Dynamics become composer assigned and part of the music.
-Texture- contrast between monophonic and polyphonic
-The creation of figured bass and basso continuo
-Text painting continues to be prominent.
New Styles in the Baroque Era
Concerto Grosso - a small group of soloists.
Ritornello - the return of a phrase throughout the piece.
Fugue - a polyphonic composition based on one main theme or subject; staggered entrances.
Oratorio - a large composition for chorus and orchestra, usually a narrative text.
Sonata - several related movements for instruments
Church music - Chorale, cantata, suite
Johann Sebastian Bach
George Frederic Handel
Figured Bass -
A short hand of music notation where only the bass line is written, but numbers below decode the rest of the chord.
What's going on in this Era?
A return to nature (simplicity)
Music in the Classical Era
An explosion of styles and genres
Music is made for enjoyment and is revered - not required.
Composers- Mozart and Haydn
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Franz Joseph Haydn
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Franz Joseph Haydn
*Both Composers are Austrian!
Specifically from Vienna*
Music in the Classical Period
-Unlike the Baroque, many moods.
-Rhythms become more complex with syncopations and different note values
-Texture - Mostly homophonic, but also flexible
-Melody, Harmony, and Form - most tuneful and memorable of any era
thus far. Example-
The piano was invented during the classical era. It was the heir of the harpsicord. The additions of pedal and felt hammers allowed for a more melodic and
Nationalism - Music that portrays the tone color and melodies of a nation.
Program Music - Symphonic Stories
Colorful Harmonies - chromaticism
Forms: Miniature and Monumental
More of free artists now. Rather than being employed.
"Works of Art make rules;
rules do not make works
of art." -Claude Debussy
Nationalism - music that has a national identity
Program Music - symphonic story telling
Chromatic harmony - chords that didn't exist in the primary scale
Rubato - slight holding back or pressing forward of a tempo