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Early Music

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Tyrone Green

on 14 April 2015

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Transcript of Early Music

Early Music
Medieval, Renaissance, & Baroque Musics
2 different melodies
2 or more parts moving together, one is the focus
Apply it
Medieval- 450- 1450
Renaissance- 1450- 1700
Baroque- 1600- 1759
Classical- 1750- 1825
Romantic- 1825- 1900
Modern- 1900- Present

What we Need to know
Monophonic: 1 line of music
Gregorian Chant
Plainsong: Music with no strict meter or accompaniment, sung by a single voice or in unison choir

Parallel Organum: A Compositional method where 2 voices sing the same melody, one a perfect 4th or 5th higher
Score: Written notation

Neumes: Markings over or under the text to show pitch changes
Solmization: The method of assigning a syllable to each tone of the scale

Renaissance: A rebirth and revival of human creativity

Motets: Polyphonic choral compositions based on sacred texts
Madrigals: Nonreligious vocal works in several parts

Word Painting: Music that shows the meaning of the words of the text

Baroque Period: The style period between 1600 and 1750
Terraced Dynamics: Layered dynamic levels within a composition

Continuo: An accompaniment using a harpsichord sounding the chord and a viola da gamba playing the bass line
Fugue: A polyphonic composition with a series of successive melody imitations

Concerto: Solo parts alternating with a group of instruments
Guido of Arezzo:
Michael Praetorius:
Claudio Monteverdi:
Johann S. Bach:
Jean-Philippe Rameau:
Antonio Vivaldi:

Monophonic: Music with a single line

Polyphonic: Music with 2 or more parts with different melodies

Homophonic: Music with 2 or more parts moving together
Take these 6 songs and classify them as Monophonic, Polyphonic, or Homophonic
Happy Birthday
Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson
Row Row Row your boat (round)
Beat It by Michael Jackson
Scarborough Fair by Simon and Garfunkel
Happy Birthday:
Uptown Funk:
Row Row Row your boat:
Beat it:
Bach 6:
Foundations of Western Classical Music
Rooted in ancient Greek and Roman traditions
The philosophers Pythagoras and Aristoxenus developed some of the early rules for music
Earliest surviving music is from the Medieval period
Medieval Church Music
During the medieval period the church held a leadership role in every part of life, from politics to the arts.
The music of the church at this time was Plainsong, which is monophonic.
Some composers felt restricted by this style.
Medieval Church Music
Over time composers began experimenting with new things like Parallel Organum.
Parallel Organum was a reaction to Plainsong
It was also an early attempt at Harmony.
Plainsong: P. 384
Hymn to St. John the Baptist
Best known example of Gregorian Chant.
Named after Pope Gregory
He was Pope from 590 to 604
This chant is also in Parallel Organum
Technical Breakthroughs
Written notation was invented, called a score.
Before notation all chants and plainsongs had to be memorized.
Memory is not 100%, so mistakes added variations over time
Neumes began being used in the 9th century.
Neumes are the marking over or under the text showing pitch changes.
The earliest form of staff notation came from a Monk named Guido of Arezzo
He used a four line staff where the higher the note was on the staff the higher the pitch.
He also created solmization.
The method of assigning a syllabic name to each tone of a scale
He Used Hymn to St. John the Baptist
Secular Music & The Renaissance
Secular Music
The Church guided music in the medieval era but there was non-religious music too.
Secular music used instruments while church music did not.
Poet -musicians called Troubadours composed music and poetry as they traveled around Europe entertaining the fuedal lords and the wealthy.
Traveling musicians
Sang songs about love, news, and stories
"Prendes i garde" by Guillaume d'Amiens
The Renaissance:
The Renaissance in General
Inspired by Greek and Roman literature and art
The rise of Humanism
The wealthy were able to expand the arts and explore what people are capable of doing
Musically a new emphasis on instruments began
The Renaissance Music
Two dominant styles- Motets & Madrigals
Motets are polyphonic choral works based on sacred (religious) text
Madrigals are secular (nonreligious) vocal works usually in 5 parts
More Renaissance Music
Music in the Renaissance also emphasized instrumental music
Instruments were used independently rather than as supports for voice
A composer of both instrumental and vocal music was Michael Praetorius.
Michael Praetorius
1571- 1621
Wrote Motets
Wrote Madrigals
Wrote dance music too
Wrote for instruments like Shawms and Recorders
Word Painting
Renaissance composers began using poems as text instead of religious texts.
They used the music to enhance the language of the poems
This is called Word Painting, music that shows the meaning of the words of the text.
Word Painting Example
Composer Thomas Weelkes wrote the Madrigal "As Vesta Was Descending"
It's a Madrigal with 6 voices or lines
The music enhances the lyrics on pg. 392
Sacred Music in the Renaissance
Only two forms of Sacred music at this time Motets and the Mass.
Both use voice singing Latin
Motets are short while masses are longer works with 5 sections
Mass: Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, & Agnus Dei
The Renaissance composer Palestrina was the most famous composer of Mass music.
Motets are Secular or Sacred?
Madrigals are Secular or Sacred?
Troubadours were traveling musicians who sang about?
Love, events, news
In Sacred music there were two types during the renaissance, what were they?
Motets & Mass
The Baroque Period 1600- 1750
The Baroque Era:
1600- 1750
Leave behind the Greek and Roman influence
A new focus on flowing and free form curves
Composers began using embellishments and ornaments
Baroque period refers to the stylistic change
It's also the beginning of Opera
Opera Beginnings:
Composers began to see the potential of solo voice and solo instrument.
They also began using terraced dynamics
Terraced Dynamics are the layered dynamic levels within a piece.
Opera Beginnings:
Composers began assigning the melody to one voice instead of keeping all the voices busy
They also simplified the instrumental voices to support the sung melody
To help support the melody they also used Continuo.
Opera Beginnings cont.
Continuo is the use of a harpsichord to sound the chords and a viola da gamba to play the bass line.
Earliest opera that we know of from 1607
Written by Claudio Monteverdi
Tells the story of Orpheus and his trip to hell to get back his dead wife, Eurydice.
He gets her back but on one condition...
Orfeo cont...
As he leads his wife out of hell he cannot look back at her.
They make it to the exit back into the world of the living and he makes a mistake.
He looks back at his wife as he leaves hell.
Orfeo cont.
Eurydice is immediately sucked back into hell.
The god Apollo takes pity on Orpheus and takes him to a cloud where he can watch over Eurydice forever.
Monteverdi & Orfeo
In Orfeo, Monteverdi uses soloists, chorus, and orchestra.
He also uses recitatives, arias, madrigals, orchestral music, and word painting
The word painting he uses sets high notes on exciting words and low notes on sad or depressing words.
Tu se' morta ("You are dead")
Claudio Monteverdi
Began as a singer and violinist
While working for a wealthy benefactor he created the opera, Orfeo.
Wrote a total of 12 operas
Sought to create music with emotional intensity
Music was admired in his time
The Fugue:
A Fugue is a polyphonic composition that uses a series of successive melodic imitations
The word comes from the German word Chase.
Fugues are structured to have 2 parts that integrate
One part theme, one part answer
Fugues Cont.
Fugues can be performed by
Small ensembles
A chorus
or a single instrument like piano
Functional Harmony:
In 1722, French Composer Jean-Philippe Rameau published his Treatise on Harmony
His book set the rules for harmonization
It also forced Baroque composers to think of chords and harmony not just melody
The Concerto:
A Concerto is an instrumental work that has solo parts alternate with a group of instruments
It provided an opportunity for instrumentalists to show off their skill
Generally 3 movements- Fast, Slow, Fast
One of the greatest Baroque concertos came from Antonio Vivaldi.
Antonio Vivaldi:
More than 500 concertos
Favored 3 movements
Most are for solo instrument
Wrote mostly for Violin
Wrote the Concerto The Four Seasons in 1725
The Four Seasons:
Written by Vivaldi in 1725
Four concertos meant to represent the 4 seasons- Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter
Written for solo violin with orchestra and harpsichord
It is homophonic
Made of many sections
Alternates between tutti (Everyone) & Concertino (solo section)
Review Ch. 17
Gregorian Chant is what kind of texture?
Fugues are what kind of texture?
Concertos are what kind of texture?
Review Ch 17:
Guido of Arezzo developed what method for naming notes?
Who were the Troubadours?
Traveling poets/musicians
Word painting is a way of doing what?
Showing the meaning of the words in the music
Review Ch. 17
Motets and Madrigals were part of what era?
Who wrote Orfeo and i the father of Opera?
Claudio Monteverdi
The concerto usually alternates between what & what?
Soloist & Orchestra
Full transcript