371 Music History

  • 150

    Early Greek Instruments

    Early Greek Instruments
    o Lyra – same instrument as the cithara or Kithara which was a harp like instrument. It could have a tortoise shell as a sound board and it was plucked – each string had a different pitch
    o Panpipes or Syrinx – each pipe had a different length => different sound
    o Aulos: reed instrument, more like an oboe
  • 150


    The Greeks used this word to refer to the power of music to influence its hearer's emotions, behaviors, and even morals.
  • 150

    Music of the Ancient Greeks

    Music of the Ancient Greeks
    Ancient Greek Music - A musicologist's idea of what Ancient Greek music may have sounded. Note the sound of the Aulos (oboe-like sound) CD 1 Track 1Homer wrote about music in
    8th century BC
    • Music: organization of sounds and time capable of conveying meaning
    • Melody: succession of musical tones that belong together and convey a distinctive musical thought
    • Harmony: accompaniment that supports a melody, 2 or more pitches sound together
    • Texture: consists of all elements of music
    • Monophonic: one voice, no accompaniment, several voices can sing one tone
    • Polyphonic: more than 1 voice singing different pitches
  • 150

    Early Music

    Early Music
    • Homophonic: 1 chord per 1 note
    • Contrapuntal: melody is related in short snippets – music is imitated
    • Rhythm: most music has rhythm – refers to a sense of movement in music
    • Form: most music has form – guiding plan or principle the way music flow
  • 300

    Early Catholic Church Music

    Early Catholic Church Music
    Early Chant ca. 300 AD - monophonic CD 1 - Track 2
    Chant = Cantus Firmus, monophonic, from Jewish Synagogues
    Church Service: The Mass was for the public and had 2 parts.
    The Eucharist (= communion) and the Synaxis (= teaching part).
    Each of section was divided into an Ordinary (text and service did not change) and Proper (text and service changed with seasons) part
    The Divine Office was reserved for sheltered religious groups, e.g. monasteries
  • Period: 300 to

    Medieval Music

    is European music written during the Middle Ages. This era begins with the fall of the Roman Empire and ends in approximately the early fifteenth century. Establishing the end of the medieval era and the beginning of the Renaissance is difficult;
  • 313

    Edit of Milan

    Edit of Milan
    was issued by Emporer Constantine the Great (272 - 337) and granted religious freedom to all Christians to worship at will. This was the beginning of music history
  • 440

    Pope Leo the Great

    Pope Leo the Great
    codified and collected chants
  • 524

    Boethius' De Institutione Musica

    Boethius' De Institutione Musica
    The Institution of Music (book): talks about three different types of music
    o Musica Mundana: product of the regular rhythmic motion of the sun, moon, stars and planets
    o Musica humana: gave harmony to the human existence
    o Musica intrumentalis: sounding both vocal and instrumental
  • 540

    Pope Gregory the Great

    Pope Gregory the Great
    Monty Python and The Holy Grail Monks
    codified and collected chants. Gregorian chants
  • Jun 8, 600

    Gregorian Chants

    Gregorian Chants
    A program of propaganda spread the idea that the chant used in Rome came directly from Gregory the Great, who had died two centuries earlier and was universally venerated. Pictures were made to depict the dove of the Holy Spirit perched on Gregory's shoulder, singing God's authentic form of chant into his ear. This gave rise to calling the music "Gregorian chant". Gregorian chanting is a type of plainsong or plainchant.
  • Jun 9, 742


    collected and codified chants
  • Period: Jan 1, 1000 to Dec 31, 1150

    Romanesque Period

    free organum developed during this time with no more strict intervals. The intervals now can contract and expand. sung only in unison, note against note
  • Jun 10, 1000

    Free Organum

    Free Organum
    Free Organum ca. 1000 - 1100 - note the two parts are not parallel but actually cross each other CD 1 Track 4
    Free Organum ca. 1000 - 1100 - note the expansion and contraction of the parts CD 1 Track 5
    no more strict intervals.
    They will expand and contract & unison
    Note against note => only unison
    during the Romanesque Period
  • Jun 8, 1100

    Troubadours and Trouveres

    Troubadours and Trouveres
    Monty Pythhon and The Holy Grail Sir Robin
    were people who sang popular (secular) music. They were poets, musicians from high social standards. In Northern France they were called troubadours and in Southern France Trouveres. They sang in the local language, the music was monophonic and usually unaccompanied.
  • Period: Jan 1, 1150 to Dec 31, 1300

    Early Gothic Period

    A 3rd type of polyphony develops: the Melismatic Organum, a slow chant on the bottom and a faster version on top.
    Center for composition and early musicians was the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris.
  • Jun 10, 1150

    Melismatic Organum

    Melismatic Organum
    Melismatic Organum - Benedicamus domino
    o developed during the Early Gothic Period
    o Slow chant on the bottom
    o a faster moving line on top
    o in Latin
  • Period: Jan 1, 1160 to Dec 31, 1250

    Notre Dame School of Music

    The only composers whose names have come down to us from this time are Léonin and Pérotin. In addition to naming the two composers as "the best composers of organum," and specifying that they compiled the big book of organum known as the Magnus Liber Organi, he provides a few tantalizing bits of information on the music and the principles involved in its composition.
  • Jun 9, 1170


    Leonin Organum CD 1 Track 6leading liturgical composer of his generation, associated with the Notre Dame, or Parisian, school of composition. To him is attributed the Magnus liber organi, a collection of two-voiced organum settings, notably of Gradual, Alleluia, and Responsory chantsIn the Magnus liber, melismatic and note-against-note styles were combined within compositions characterized by the use of rhythmic modes.
  • Jun 10, 1177

    Richard the Lion-Hearted

    Richard the Lion-Hearted
  • Jun 9, 1200


    Perotin Organum - Alleluya: Nativitas
    French composer of sacred polyphonic music, who is believed to have introduced the composition of polyphony in four parts into Western music. Was Leonin's successor at the School of Notre Dame
  • Jun 10, 1200

    Troubadour Song

    Troubadour Song
    Troubadour Song CD 1 Track 9
    Troubadour Song CD 1 Track 12
    usually sung unaccompanied
  • Jun 10, 1200


  • Jun 8, 1250


    Estampie ca 1200 CD 1 Track 14
    Estampie "Retrove"
    popular instrumental style during the Early Gothic Period. Usually one solo instrument with a simple accompaniment in a perfect 4th interval.
  • Period: Jan 1, 1300 to Dec 31, 1450

    Ars Nova

    refers to a musical style which flourished in France and the Burgundian Low Countries in the Late Middle Ages: more particularly, in the period between the preparation of the Roman de Fauvel (1310 – 1314) and the death of the composer Guillaume de Machaut in 1377.
  • Jun 10, 1300


  • Jun 10, 1300


    The system devised in the late Middle Ages governing rhythmic relationships between long, breve/double whole-note and semibreve/whole-note.
  • Jun 9, 1311

    Philippe de Vitry

    Philippe de Vitry
    was a French composer, music theorist and poet. He was an accomplished, innovative, and influential composer, and may also have been the author of the Ars Nova treatise.
  • Jun 8, 1314

    Roman de Fauvel

    Roman de Fauvel
    The Roman de Fauvel, translated as The Story of the Fawn-Colored Beast, is a 14th century French poem accredited to French royal clerk Gervais du Bus, though probably best known for its musical arrangement by Philippe de Vitry in the Ars Nova style. First published in Paris in 1314, the piece serves as an allegorical criticism of church and state.
    Anthology of all musical styles of the Medieval times.
  • Jun 9, 1320

    Guillaume Marchaut

    Guillaume Marchaut
    Machaut, Ballade - Dame de Qui tout joie vient - CD 1 Track 17
    o Worked for King John of Bohemia
    o Motet = same as melismatic organum
    o Wrote several motet, mostly in Latin
    o Became the movement of the mass
    o Messe of Notre Dame – greatest piece he ever wrote
    o Wrote secular music as well
    o He was a troubadour
  • Jun 8, 1322

    Ars Nova Notandi

    Ars Nova Notandi
    Ars nova notandi (A New Technique of Writing [Music]) attributed to Philippe de Vitry
    mensuration = movement in music and meter
    rhythm and rythmic modes
  • Jun 8, 1364

    Messe de Nostre Dame

    Messe de Nostre Dame
    Machaut - Benedictus from Messe de Nostre Dame CD 1 Track 18
    is a polyphonic mass composed before 1365 by the French poet, composer and cleric Guillaume de Machaut (circa 1300-1377). One of the great masterpieces of medieval music and of all religious music, it is the earliest complete setting of the Ordinary of the Mass attributable to a single composer.
  • Jun 9, 1410

    John Dunstable

    John Dunstable
    Mastered a new style: panconsonance (big difference between Medieval and Renaissance)
    Panconsonance: harmony changed from the sound of the perfect intervals to the sounds of the consonant intervals
    Brought new style to France and helped establish the Burgundian School of Composition
  • Jun 9, 1415

    Giullaume Dufay

    Giullaume Dufay
    Dufay - Vasilisa ergo gaude - This motet is in panconsonant style. note use of imitation. CD 2 Track 3Guillaume Dufay - Ave Regina Coelorum - another example of motet & fauxbourdon style. Note imitation, some examples of troping, & different text in each part.Dufay was a prominent composer from the Burgundian Schoolfauxbourdon (English Discant Style) = music with a false bass => moved the cantus firmus from the bass and move it somewhere else in the motet
    Imitative Polyphony = somebody sang one part and it was imitated in another voice
  • Jun 8, 1430

    Burgundian School of Composing

    Burgundian School of Composing
    The Burgundian School is a term used to denote a group of composers active in the 15th century in what is now northern and eastern France, Belgium, and the Netherlands.
    Of all the names associated with the Burgundian School, the most famous was Guillaume Dufay, who was probably the most famous composer in Europe in the 15th century. He wrote music in many of the forms which were current, music which was melodic, singable and memorable.
  • Jun 10, 1440

    John Dunstable - Veni Sancte Spiritus

    John Dunstable - Veni Sancte Spiritus
    John Dunstable - Veni Sancte Spiritus CD 2 Track 2
    This motet is one of Dunstable's most celebrated compositions. It is a master example of isorhythmic structure and the panconsonant harmony typical of hte English School and later the Burgundian School.
  • Period: Jan 1, 1450 to


    Artists and thinkers went back to the pre-Christian ideas of ancient Greece and Rome
    Medici Family brought many works of art back
    People believed they were masters of their own fate
    Long held believes disappeared – e.g. earth was flat, Columbus sailed across to US, Copernicus proved that earth was not the center of the universe
    Great Britain invaded France
    The British took everybody with them including musicians and artists
    Music started to have a more consonant sound
  • Jun 9, 1460

    Josquin des Prez

    Josquin des Prez
    Chant - Pange Lingua followed by des Prez - Missa Pange Lingua Mass: Kyrie - note the use of one text, imitation, sectionalization, & harmonies CD 2 Track 6
    <a href='http://ereser
    Master composer of his time
     Came from Paris
     Went to Italy to study
     Music was panconsonant
     introduced 4 equal parts
     Composed 18 masses, 100’s of motets, instrumental music, secular and vernacular music
  • Jun 9, 1470

    Heinrich Isaac

    Heinrich Isaac
    Heinrich Isaac - Innsbruck ich muss dich lassen - "Innsbruck, I must Leave You" is an example of German Lieder using folk music as an example of Isaac's eclecticism CD 2 Track 8was a Franco-Flemish composer of the Renaissance. He is regarded as one of the most significant contemporaries of Josquin des Prez, and had an especially large influence on the subsequent development of music in Germany.
  • Jun 9, 1500

    Cantus Firmus Mass

    Cantus Firmus Mass
    Johannes Okegham - Kyrie from Mass: Fors Seulment - This is different from teh motet in that it uses only one text. This is a cantus firmus mass using the common cantus firmus for all movements. it is highly imitative. CD 2 Track 5The cantus firmus mass is a mass in which every section was composed using the same pre-existing melody as the contrapuntal foundation. The cantus firmas was often derived from a chant or popular song. This form was developed by the composers of the Burgundian School.
  • Jun 10, 1530

    Andrea Gabrieli

    Andrea Gabrieli
    was an Italian composer and organist of the late Renaissance. The uncle of the somewhat more famous Giovanni Gabrieli, he was the first internationally renowned member of the Venetian School of composers, and was extremely influential in spreading the Venetian style in Italy as well as in Germany.
  • Jun 9, 1539

    Girolamo Mei

    Girolamo Mei
    was an Italian historian and humanist, famous in music history for providing the intellectual impetus to the Florentine Camerata, which attempted to revive ancient Greek music drama. Many of his findings he communicated to Vincenzo Galilei through an extensive correspondence; this information was decisive in the formation of the new musical style which was developing in Florence at the end of the 16th century, the new recitative style from which developed monody, the first music dramas.
  • Jun 9, 1545

    Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina

    Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina
    Palestrina - Sanctus from Mass: Aeterna Christi munera CD 2 Track 10
    Great Italian composer
    Worked for Pope Julius III in Rome
    Composed over 100 masses, Missa of Papae Marcelli convinced the clergy to keep polyphonic music => Saved polyphonic music
  • Dec 13, 1545

    Council of Trent

    Council of Trent
    o Leaders of the Catholic Church got together to figure out what was wrong with the Catholic Church
    o Wanted monophonic music so they could hear the words clearly
    o They wanted simple music for simple people => wanted to abolish the composition of polyphonic music in the church => Palestrina saved polyphonic music by composing Missa Papae Marcelli
  • Jun 10, 1552

    Orlando De Lassus

    Orlando De Lassus
    de Lassus - Benedictus and Hosanna from mass: Puisque j'ai perdu CD 2 Track 9
    was a Franco-Flemish composer of the late Renaissance. He is today considered to be the chief representative of the mature polyphonic style of the Franco-Flemish school, and one of the two most famous and influential musicians in Europe at the end of the 16th century
  • Jun 9, 1562

    Missa Papae Marcelli

    Missa Papae Marcelli
    The mass is freely composed, not based upon a cantus firmus or parody. Perhaps because of this, the mass is not as thematically consistent as Palestrina's masses based on models. It is primarily a six-voice mass (there are eight during the Agnus Dei due to doubling), though the use of the full forces is reserved for specific climactic portions in the text, and voice combinations are varied throughout the piece. It is set primarily in a homorhythmic, declamatory style, with little overlapping
  • Jun 10, 1573

    Giovanni Gabrieli

    Giovanni Gabrieli
    Giovanni Gabrieli - In Excelsis - note the antiphonal choirs, instrumental usage as interludes and doublings CD 2 Track 11
    Nephew of Andrea
    one of the greatest composer of the late renaissance
    had to deal with the great space of the cathedral
    antiphonal music: call and response => Venetian style of music
    polychoral = contrasting, meter change, instrumental interludes, cantor, response
  • Jun 9, 1576

    Florentine Camerata

    Florentine Camerata
    The Florentine Camerata was a group of humanists, musicians, poets and intellectuals in late Renaissance Florence who gathered under the patronage of Count Giovanni de' Bardi to discuss and guide trends in the arts, especially music and drama. Ottavio Rinuccini, Vincenzi Galilei, Giulio Caccini and Jacopo Peri were some of the famous men of Florence.
  • Jun 11, 1576

    Vincenzo Galilei

    Vincenzo Galilei
    was an Italian lutenist, composer, and music theorist, and the father of the famous astronomer and physicist Galileo Galilei and of the lute virtuoso and composer Michelagnolo Galilei. He was a seminal figure in the musical life of the late Renaissance, and contributed significantly to the musical revolution which demarcates the beginning of the Baroque era. He was a member of the Florentine Camerata.
  • Jun 11, 1576

    Count Giovanni de Bardi

    Count Giovanni de Bardi
    Italian nobleman, patron of music and art, and composer; b. Florence, Feb. 5, 1534; d. Rome, Sept. 1612. He was the founder of the Florentine Camerata, a group of musicians who met at his home (1576–c. 1582) to discuss the music of Greek antiquity; this led to the beginnings of opera.
  • Jun 11, 1576

    Ottavio Rinuccini

    Ottavio Rinuccini
    was an Italian poet, courtier, and opera librettist at the end of the Renaissance and beginning of the Baroque eras. In collaborating with Jacopo Peri to produce the first opera, Dafne, in 1597, he became the first opera librettist. He was a member of the Florentine Camerata
  • Jun 11, 1576

    Jacopo Peri

    Jacopo Peri
    was an Italian composer and singer of the transitional period between the Renaissance and Baroque styles, and is often called the inventor of opera. He wrote the first work to be called an opera today, Dafne (around 1597), and also the first opera to have survived to the present day, Euridice (1600). He was a member of the Florentine Camerata.
  • Jun 9, 1580


  • Jun 10, 1580

    Italian Madrigal

    Italian Madrigal
    Luca Marenzio - Italian Madrigal - Scendi dal Paradiso CD 2 Track 12
    is through composed, but in sections featuring note against note and imitation. The madrigal was written for a wedding.
  • Variations

    the main theme is embellished by the composer with more notes or different rhythm
  • English Madrigal

    English Madrigal
    English Madrigal Thomas Morley - Now is the Month of May CD 2 Track 13
    The English turned the madrigal into a lighter derivative of this genre. Note the Fa La La's
  • French Chanson

    French Chanson
    French Chanson - Allons au Vert Bocage CD 2 Track 14
    The polyphonic chanson of the sixteenth century, the French counterpart of the madrigal. Note the opening rhythm (long, short, short), which will be used later in the canzona.
  • Canzona

    The instrumental canzona derived its form from the French polyphonic chanson known in Italy as canzon(a) francese; many early canzonas were instrumental arrangements of chansons, alternating between polyphonic and homophonic (based on chords) sections. Typically, the opening motif consisted of one long and two short notes of identical pitch. Although Italy remained the principal home of the canzona, it spread to other countries, notably Germany.
  • Ricercar

    Ricercar - instrumental counterpart of the motet. Note the imitation, crossing of voices and continous texture CD 2 Track 15A ricercar is a type of late Renaissance and mostly early Baroque instrumental composition. The term means to search out, and many ricercars serve a preludial function to "search out" the key or mode of a following piece. A ricercar may explore the permutations of a given motif, and in that regard may follow the piece used as illustration
  • Dance Suite

    composition that has several short movements and each movement was a popular dance
    • Basse Dance: smooth gliding dance in a triple meter
    • Saltarello: Italian dance, fast dance in three
    • Pavanne
    • Gaillardes
  • Toccata

    • Fast virtuoso type piece with fast notes
    • For strings and keyboard
  • Music at the end of the Renaissance

    Giovanni Gabrieli - Sonata Pian'e Forte & In Excelsis - arranged for 20th century brass instruments CD 2 Track 17* Mass
    * Motets
    * Lutheran Chorales = melody is in soprano, 4 voices, sung almost always note against note
    * in Germany: Lieder
  • Period: to

    Baroque Music

    It is conventionally accepted that the division between the Renaissance and the Baroque period began in Italy with the formation of the Florentine Camerata, a group of humanists, musicians, poets and intellectuals in late Renaissance Florence who gathered under the patronage of Count Giovanni de' Bardi to discuss and guide trends in the arts, especially music and drama. In reference to music, their ideals were based on their perception of Classical (especially ancient Greek) musical drama.
  • Period: to

    Early Baroque

    dance suite
    prelude followed by an allemande douple meter at a moderate tempo
    courante (triple meter and faster)
    sarabande (slow tempo and usually triple meter)
    gigue (fast compound rhythms)
    Baroque Sonata
    trio sonata
  • Opera

    is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text and musical score. Opera is part of the Western classical music tradition. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance. The performance is typically given in an opera house, accompanied by an orchestra or smaller musical ensemble. Opera started in Italy at the end of the 16th century and soon spread through the rest of Europe.
  • Venetian Style

    Monteverdi - Motet "Domine ad adiuvandaum me festina" CD 3 Track 13was a type of music of the late Renaissance early Baroque eras which involved spatially separate choirs singing in alternation. It represented a major stylistic shift from the prevailing polyphonic writing of the middle Renaissance, was one of the major stylistic developments which led directly to the formation of what we now know as the Baroque style. A commonly encountered term for the separated choirs is cori spezzati—literally, separated choirs.
  • Aria

    The aria first appeared in the 14th century when it signified a manner or style of singing or playing. Aria could also mean a melodic scheme (motif) or pattern for singing a poetic pattern, such as a sonnet. It was also attached to instrumental music Over time, arias evolved from simple melodies into a structured form. In the 17th century, the aria was written in ternary form (A–B–A); these arias were known as da capo arias. The aria later "invaded" the opera repertoire with its many sub-species
  • Le Nuove Musiche

    Le Nuove Musiche
    Caccini - Perfidissimo volto CD 3 Track 1
    Caccini - Belle rose porporine CD 3 Track 2
    is a collection of monodies and songs for solo voice and basso continuo by the composer Giulio Caccini, published in Florence in July 1602.
  • sacred concerto

    the modern style is applied to the composition of motets; in other words, the sacred concerto developed from teh Renaissance motet in the same way that vocal chamber music with basso continuo arose from the 16th century madrigal.
  • Monteverdi's Fifth Book of Madrigals

    Monteverdi's Fifth Book of Madrigals
    Cruda AmarilliThe Fifth Book of Madrigals shows the shift from the late Renaissance style of music to the early Baroque. Monteverdi made his reply in the introduction to the fifth book, with a proposal of the division of musical practice into two streams, which he called prima prattica, and seconda prattica. Prima prattica was described as the previous polyphonic ideal of the sixteenth century, with flowing strict counterpoint, prepared dissonance, and equality of voices.
  • monody

    it is a solo vocal style distinguished by having a single melodic line and instrumental accompaniment. Although such music is found in various cultures throughout history, the term is specifically applied to Italian song of the early 17th century, particularly the period from about 1600 to 1640. The term is used both for the for the style and for individual songs. Compositions in monodic form might be called madrigals, motets, or even concertos.
  • Aria Styles and Types

    Aria Styles and Types
    Bel Canto: "beautiful singing", used generally syllabic settings and relatively slow motion (usually in triple meter)
    Contrasting: was a florid style featuring rapid coloratura passages => showed vocal agility
    Variations: either in strophic form or with a melody unfolding over a short ostinato bass formula.
    Ternary design: later evolved into an elaborate, large-scale scheme.
  • Orfeo

    Monteverdi - Toccata CD 3 Track 6Monteverdi - Recitativo CD 3 Track 7Monteverdi - Aria CD 3 Track 8
    is an early Baroque opera by Claudio Monteverdi. It is based on the Greek legend of Orpheus, and tells the story of his descent to Hades and his fruitless attempt to bring his dead bride Eurydice back to the living world. This is the very first opera ever written.
  • Claudio Monteverdi

    Claudio Monteverdi
    Monteverdi - A un giro (4th book of madrigals) CD 3 Track 3Monteverdi - Se vittorie si belle (9th book of madrigals) CD 3 Track 41st true great composer at the beginning of the Baroque and end of Renaissance; Studied with the Gabrielis; Succeeded them at St. Mark’s Cathedral; Wrote many books on madrigals, the 1st 4 books were in the old style and from the 5th book of madrigals on in the new style;
  • recititavo or recitative

    recititavo or recitative
    is a style of delivery (much used in operas, oratorios, and cantatas) in which a singer is allowed to adopt the rhythms of ordinary speech. The mostly syllabic recitativo secco ("dry", accompanied only by continuo) is at one end of a spectrum through recitativo accompagnato (using orchestra), the more melismatic arioso, and finally the full-blown aria or ensemble, where the pulse is entirely governed by the music.
  • Frescobaldi

    Frescobaldi - Canzona "La Vincenti" CD 3 Track 10
    (September 13, 1583 – March 1, 1643) was a musician from Ferrara, one of the most important composers of keyboard music in the late Renaissance and early Baroque periods.
  • homophonic texture

    When chordal harmony is present, "homophonic texture" is created. Often in homophonic texture, there is a melodic voice and another voice or group of voices which contain chords. Whenever there is a melody plus chords, the texture is homophonic texture.
  • Early Operas

    Sing notes but not in time = recitativo culminates in an Aria
    Aria was organized into orchestra parts and singer parts, interludes between the parts = ritornellos
    Prelude = Toccata
    Chorus = several people singing arias
  • Giulio Caccini

    Giulio Caccini
    was an Italian composer, teacher, singer, instrumentalist and writer of the very late Renaissance and early Baroque eras. He was one of the founders of the genre of opera, and one of the single most influential creators of the new Baroque style. He was a member of the Florentine Camerata.
  • Figured Bass / Thoroughbass / Basso Continuio

    Figured Bass / Thoroughbass / Basso Continuio
    is a kind of integer musical notation used to indicate intervals, chords, and non-chord tones, in relation to a bass note. Figured bass is closely associated with basso continuo, an accompaniment used in almost all genres of music in the Baroque period, though rarely in modern music.
  • Heinrich Schuetz

    Heinrich Schuetz
    the greatest composer of the new style in sacred music. He worked primarily in Dresden. From 1609 - 1612 he studied with Giovanni Gabrieli and from 1628 - 1629 he studied with Monteverdi. He established a synthesis that combined the monodic style and affective aesthetic of the Italians with the German language and taste.
  • Masque

    The English court had a tradition somewhat comparable to the French Court ballet in the masque, a variety entertainment with recitatives, songs, choruses, dances, and costumes.
  • ritornello

    instrumental passages between stanzas in an opera
  • Oratorio

    is a large musical composition including an orchestra, a choir, and soloists. Like an opera, an oratorio includes the use of a choir, soloists, an ensemble, various distinguishable characters, and arias. However, opera is musical theatre, while oratorio is strictly a concert piece—though oratorios are sometimes staged as operas, and operas are sometimes presented in concert form. In an oratorio there is generally little or no interaction between the characters, and no props or elaborate costumes
  • Giacomo Carissimi

    Giacomo Carissimi
    the composer most responsible for the early establishment of hte oratorio. He worked primarily in Rome. His works were mostly composed for a society of devout laymen, the brotherhood of the Sanctissimo Crocifisso (Most Holy Crucifix) at teh elite, upper-class Chruch of San Marcello.
  • Jules Mazarin

    Jules Mazarin
    was a French-Italian cardinal, diplomat, and politician, who served as the chief minister of France from 1642 until his death. Mazarin succeeded his mentor, Cardinal Richelieu. He was a noted collector of art and jewels, particularly diamonds, and he bequeathed the "Mazarin diamonds" to Louis XIV in 1661, some of which remain in the collection of the Louvre museum in Paris.
  • Baroque Canzona

    The canzona developed along the opposite path to that of the ricercar. Endangered by the same potential undirectedness as teh ricercar, the canzona tended to fall apart into short, contrasting sections that maintained interest more through contrast than through unity. The result was the rise of the sonata.
  • Jean Baptiste Lully

    Jean Baptiste Lully
    Lully - French Overture "Armide" CD 4 Track 1 was an Italian-born, French composer who spent most of his life working in the court of Louis XIV of France. He is considered the chief master of the French Baroque style. Lully disavowed any Italian influence in French music of the period. He was the most successful schemer and manipulator among all the great composers in the history of music.
  • Jephté

    Carissimi - Oratorio Plorate Fili Israel CD 3 Track 9Carissimi - Jeptha Plorates Colles
    is an opera by the French composer Michel Pignolet de Montéclair. It takes the form of a tragédie en musique in a prologue and five acts. The libretto, by the Abbé Simon-Joseph Pellegrin, is based on the Biblical story of Jephtha. It was the first opera in France using a story from the Bible to appear on a public stage. For this reason Cardinal de Noailles banned performances of the work for a time.
  • French Overture

    The French overture is a musical form widely used in the Baroque period. Its basic formal division is into two parts, which are usually enclosed by double bars and repeat signs. They are complementary in styles (slow in dotted rhythms and fast in fugal style), and the first ends with a half-cadence that requires an answering structure with a tonic ending. The second section often but not always ends with a brief recollection of the first, sometimes even repeating some of its melodic content
  • Baroque Ricercar

    To not have the impression of the music wandering aimlessly from one point to the next, the composer concentrated on working out one point of imitation or subject through an entire piece. Besides providing unity to the piece, this use of one predominant idea was in keeping with teh Baroque aesthetic assumption that an entrie piece or movement should be governed by a single affection.
  • Ballet de Cour

    France had a special tradition of court entertainment in the form of the ballet de cour. The ballet of hte early 17th century was not a stage production performed by professionals but a participatory art form with the courtiers themselves as teh dancers. following a quasi-dramatic plan, the ballet combined dance with instrumental music, spoken narrative & dialoque, airs & ensemble singing, & all the trappings of dramatic spectacle: costumes, sets, and machines.
  • French Overture

    An influential contribution to the history of instrumental form was the French Overture, which found a particulary satisfactory manner of treating the opening of a large-scale musical work. The overture began with a slow and stately passage in homorhythmic style, generally featuring dotted rhythms. There followed a faster, lighter, commonly fugal section, & there might be a brief return to the opening style at the end.
  • Academie Royale de Musique

    Academie Royale de Musique
    Academie Royale de Musique
    The purpose of the academy was to set up and maintain high intellectual and artistic standards and a French national style
  • Music of the Early Baroque

    Denis Gaultier - Gigue in D Major CD 3 Track 11
    Dance Suite:
    prelude followed by an allemande (duple meter at ta moderate tempo)
    Courante (triple meter and faster)
    sarabande (slow tempo and usually triple meter)
    gigue (fast compound rhythms)
    Baroque Sonata
    trio sonata
  • Giuseppe Torelli

    Giuseppe Torelli
    Giuseppe Torelli was an Italian violist and violinist, pedagogue and composer, who ranks with Arcangelo Corelli among the developers of the Baroque concerto and concerto grosso.
  • Henry Purcell

    Henry Purcell
    10 September 1659 – 21 November 1695), was an English organist and Baroque composer of secular and sacred music. Although Purcell incorporated Italian and French stylistic elements into his compositions, his legacy was a uniquely English form of Baroque music.
  • incidental music

    incidental music
    Henry Purcell wrote incidental music that was played between acts of a play, also called background music
  • Italian Overture/sinfonia

    Scarlatti - S. Flippe Neri CD 4 Track 2is a piece of orchestral music with which in the late 17th and early 18th centuries several operas, oratorios and other large-scale works opened.
    An Italian overture typically has a three-movement structure – the outer movements are quick, the middle movement slow.
    This type of overture was particularly popular among Italian composers such as Alessandro Scarlatti. In the early 18th century such type of overture would usually be called sinfonia to avoid confusion with other types of sinfonia.
  • Sonata de Chiesa

    (Italian: Church sonata) is an instrumental composition dating from the Baroque period, generally consisting of four movements. More than one melody was often used, and the movements were ordered slow–fast–slow–fast with respect to tempo. The second movement was usually a fugal allegro, and the third and fourth were binary forms that sometimes resembled the sarabande and gigue.
  • Sonata de Camera

    is literally translated to mean 'chamber sonata' and is used to describe a group of instrumental pieces set into three or four different movements, beginning with a prelude, or small sonata, acting as an introduction for the following movements.
    The term sonata da camera originated from Rome in the late 17th century from when Arcangelo Corelli was composing two different variations of sonata. These became known as sonata da camera and sonata da chiesa.
  • fantasia

    improvisatory pieces formed another class of instrumental compositions. The rise of virtuoso technique, especially on lute or vihuela and on keyboard instruments, led to the creation of many such workds. These pieces might bear titles as fantasia, reflecting the untrammeled freedom of the imagination exercised int the composition.
  • Arcangelo Corelli

    Arcangelo Corelli
    Corelli - Trio Sonata in A Major CD 3 Track 12
    (17 February 1653 – 8 January 1713) was an Italian violinist and composer of Baroque music. He was the outstanding composer of the genre of sonata.
  • Dietrich Buxtehude

    Dietrich Buxtehude
    (c.1637-1707) was a German-Danish organist and composer of the Baroque period. His organ works represent a central part of the standard organ repertoire and are frequently performed at recitals and in church services. He composed in a wide variety of vocal and instrumental idioms, and his style strongly influenced many composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach. Buxtehude, along with Heinrich Schütz, is considered today to be one of the most important German composers of the mid-Baroque
  • Johann Pachelbel

    Johann Pachelbel
    was an acclaimed German Baroque composer, organist and teacher who brought the south German organ tradition to its peak. He composed a large body of sacred and secular music, and his contributions to the development of the chorale prelude and fugue have earned him a place among the most important composers of the middle Baroque.
  • concerto

    in the late 17th century composers began to exploit the concertato principle in adapting the ensemble sonata for performance by a larger orchestral ensemble, thereby producing the concerto.
  • concerto grosso

    J S Bach - Concerto Grosso Brandeburg Concerto #2 CD 4 Track 8
    the full ensemble reinforces certain passages is the tutti or concerto grosso.
  • Period: to

    Late Baroque Music

  • fugue

    J S Bach - Organ Fugue in G minor CD 4 Track 4is a type of counterpoint or contrapuntal composition. It begins with a theme stated by one of the voices playing alone. A second voice then enters and plays the same theme, while the first voice continues on with a contrapuntal accompaniment. The remaining voices enter one by one, each beginning by stating the same theme. The remainder of the fugue develops the material further using all of the voices and, usually, multiple statements of the theme.
  • Alessandro Scarlatti

    Alessandro Scarlatti
    (1660 - 1725) leading composer of the Neapolitan opera.
  • Neapolitan Opera

    style of Italian opera written chiefly by 18th-century composers working in Naples
  • da Capo Aria

    Scarlatti - Cantata "Su Le Sponde Del Tebro" CD 4 Track 3
    developed from the ternary aria form. Da capo aria structure had two large constrasting parts, the second followed by a return to the first indicated simply by the marking "da capo."
  • exposition

    In musical form and analysis, exposition is the initial presentation of the thematic material of a musical composition, movement, or section. The use of the term generally implies that the material will be developed or varied.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach

    Johann Sebastian Bach
    was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, & violinist whose sacred & secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period & brought it to its ultimate maturity. Although he did not introduce new forms, he enriched the prevailing German style with a robust contrapuntal technique, an unrivalled control of harmonic and motivic organisation, & the adaptation of rhythms, forms & textures from abroad, particularly from Italy & France.
  • Antonio Vivaldi

    Antonio Vivaldi
    Vivaldi - Violin Concerto in G Major CD 4 Track 7was an Italian Baroque composer, priest, and virtuoso violinist, born in Venice. Vivaldi is recognized as one of the greatest Baroque composers, and his influence during his lifetime was widespread over Europe. Vivaldi is known mainly for composing instrumental concertos, especially for the violin, as well as sacred choral works and over 40 operas. His best known work is a series of violin concertos known as The Four Seasons.
  • Recitative accompagnato

    an entire string ensemble might be used for special effects
  • recitative secco

    most of the recitative was supported only by the basso continuo, which tended to play at a very slow harmonic rhythm
  • Johann Sebastian Bach - Weimar

    Johann Sebastian Bach - Weimar
    J S Bach - Flute Sonata in E Major CD 4 Track 9
    Bach progressed to a new style of musical life, taking an appointment at the court of the duke in Weimar. His main duties were again as organist, & he must have played chamber music as well.
  • ornamentation

    the embellishment of a melody, either by adding notes or by modifying rhythms. In European music, ornamentation is added to an already complete composition in order to make it more pleasing.
  • George Frideric Handel

    George Frideric Handel
    G F Handel - Air and Variations for Harpsichord on the Harmonious Blacksmith CD 4 Track 13was a German-British Baroque composer, famous for his operas, oratorios, and concertos. Handel was born in Germany in the same year as Johann Sebastian Bach and Domenico Scarlatti. He received critical musical training in Italy before settling in London and becoming a naturalised British subject. His works include Messiah, Water Music, and Music for the Royal Fireworks. He was strongly influenced by the great composers of the Italian Baroque and the middle-German polyphonic choral tradition.
  • cantata

    J S Bach - Cantata #80 "Eine Feste Burg ist Unser Gott" CD 4 Track 10
    a sophisticated type of vocal chamber music. As the genre evolved, it tended more and more to form a series of articulated movements, alternating recitatives and arias. The text became like monodramas for solo voice with basso continuo, possibly obbligato instruments, or even small orchestra ensembles.
  • George I

    George I
    Handel was subject to his former master the elector of Hanover who became King of the English throne after Queen Anne died
  • episode

    A passage between statements of a main subject or theme, as in a rondo or fugue.
  • mature baroque sonata

    Corelli - Violin Sonata in A major CD 4 Track 6
    The archetype for instrumentation in the sonata was scoring for 1 or 2 violins & basso continuo, though naturally a wide variety of combinations of linear instruments was available.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach - Coethen

    Johann Sebastian Bach - Coethen
    Bach left the service of the Duke of Weimar for the very musical prince at Coethen. He served 6 years as Kapellmeister and his duties were in the secular rather than the sacred sphere.
  • Water Music

    Water Music
    is a collection of orchestral movements, often considered three suites, composed by George Frideric Handel. It premiered on 17 July 1717 after King George I had requested a concert on the River Thames. The concert was performed by 50 musicians playing on a barge near the royal barge from which the King listened with close friends
  • ritornello form

    Many Baroque concertos are structured in a form known as ritornello form. Ritornello form was prevalent in early opera before being adopted in instrumental music. In this form, stable instrumental interludes, known as ritornellos (literally, "the little thing that returns"), alternated with verses of singing over a continuo accompaniment. The verse and chorus sturcutre of modern popular music derives from this form.
  • Stradivari

    was an Italian luthier, a crafter of stringed instruments such as violins, cellos, guitars, violas, and harps. Stradivari is generally considered the most significant artisan in this field. The Latinized form of his surname, Stradivarius, as well as the colloquial, "Strad", is often used to refer to his instruments.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach - Leipzig

    Johann Sebastian Bach - Leipzig
    J S Bach - Toccata and Fugue in D CD 4 Track 11
    His responsibilities in Leipzig varied from teaching Latin as well as music & supervised the music for 4 churches & special music for civic occasions.
  • orchestral suite

    a suite is an ordered set of instrumental or orchestral pieces normally performed in a concert setting rather than as accompaniment; they may be extracts from an opera, ballet, or incidental music to a play or film, or they may be entirely original movements. In the Baroque era the suite was more precisely defined, with the pieces unified by key, and consisting of dances usually preceded by a prelude or overture.
  • Ballad Opera

    a combination of spoken dialogue with simle songs accompanied by basso continuo. Ballad opera offered a variety of appeals to the London middle class: the plots, often featuring political satire, & characters were taken from contemporary life; ther words were in the vernacular; the music was simple & the tunes catchy; & it did not use castrati.
  • John Gay

    John Gay
    was an English poet and dramatist and member of the Scriblerus Club. He is best remembered for The Beggar's Opera (1728), set to music by Johann Christoph Pepusch. The characters, including Captain Macheath and Polly Peachum, became household names.
  • Beggar's Opera

    Beggar's Opera
    is a ballad opera in three acts written in 1728 by John Gay. It is one of the watershed plays in Augustan drama and is the only example of the once thriving genre of satirical ballad opera to remain popular today. Ballad operas were satiric musical plays that used some of the conventions of opera, but without recitative. The lyrics of the airs in the piece are set to popular broadsheet ballads, opera arias, church hymns and folk tunes of the time.
  • Domenico Scarlatti

    Domenico Scarlatti
    was an Italian composer who spent much of his life in the service of the Portuguese and Spanish royal families. He is classified as a Baroque composer chronologically, although his music was influential in the development of the Classical style.
  • intermezzi

    in the most general sense, is a composition which fits between other musical or dramatic entities, such as acts of a play or movements of a larger musical work
  • Giovanni Battista Sammartini

    Giovanni Battista Sammartini
    was an Italian composer, organist, choirmaster & teacher. He counted Gluck among his students, & was highly regarded by younger composers including Johann Christian Bach. Sammartini is especially associated with the formation of the concert symphony through both the shift from a brief opera-overture style & the introduction of a new seriousness and use of thematic development that prefigure Haydn and Mozart
  • Guarniri

    is the family name of a group of distinguished luthiers from Cremona in Italy in the 17th and 18th centuries, whose standing is considered comparable to those of the Amati and Stradivari families.
  • The Art of The Fugue

    The Art of The Fugue
    is an incomplete masterpiece by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750). The work was most likely started at the beginning of the 1740s, if not earlier. The first known surviving version, which contained 12 fugues and 2 canons, was copied by the composer in 1745. This manuscript has a slightly different title, added afterwards by his son-in-law Johann Christoph Altnickol: Die Kunst der Fuga. Bach's second version was published in 1751 after his death. It contains 14 fugues and 4 canons
  • Amati

    is the name of a family of Italian violin makers, who flourished at Cremona from about 1549 to 1740.
  • Mannheim Orchestra

    Mannheim Orchestra
    refers to both the orchestral techniques pioneered by the court orchestra of Mannheim in the latter half of the 18th century as well as the group of composers who wrote such music for the orchestra of Mannheim and others.
  • The Well Tempered Clavier

    The Well Tempered Clavier
    J S Bach - Prelude and Fugue in C CD 4 Track 5is a collection of solo keyboard music composed by J S Bach. He first gave the title to a book of preludes & fugues in all 24 major & minor keys, dated 1722, composed "for the profit & use of musical youth desirous of learning, & especially for the pastime of those already skilled in this study." Bach later compiled a second book of the same kind, dated 1742, but titled it only "Twenty-four Preludes & Fugues." The two works are now usually considered to comprise The Well-Tempered Clavier.
  • Messiah

    G F Handel - Recitativo Accampagnato, Aria "The Trumpet Shall Sound" CD 4 Track 14is an English-language oratorio composed by George Frideric Handel, and is one of the most popular works in the Western choral literature. The libretto by Charles Jennens is drawn entirely from the King James and Great Bibles, and interprets the Christian doctrine of the Messiah. Messiah (often but incorrectly called The Messiah) is one of Handel's most famous works.
  • Galant Style

    Galant Style
    D Scarlatti - Sonataqs for Harpsichord CD 5 Track 2J C Bach - Symphony in D Mvt 1 CD 5 Track 1 The French term galant implies elegance, charm, intimacy, grace, clarity, & naturalness.
  • Empfindsam Stil

    D Scarlatti - Sonatas for Harpsichord CD 5 Track 3important movement occurring in northern German instrumental music during the mid-18th century and characterized by an emphasis upon the expression of a variety of deeply felt emotions within a musical work. This aesthetic is typical of an age that was much given to the expression of moving sentiments not only in art but in everyday life.
  • B minor Mass

    B minor Mass
    is a musical setting of the complete Latin Mass by Johann Sebastian Bach. The work was one of Bach's last, although much of it was made of music that Bach had composed earlier. Bach assembled the Mass in its present form in 1749, just before his death in 1750.
  • Royal Fireworks Music

    Royal Fireworks Music
    G F Handel - Overture to the Royal Fireworks CD 4 Track 12
    is a wind band suite composed by George Frideric Handel in 1749 under contract of George II of Great Britain for the fireworks in London's Green Park on 27 April 1749. It was to celebrate the end of the War of the Austrian Succession and the signing of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle in 1748.
  • Period: to


    The Classical period falls between the Baroque and the Romantic periods.
  • subject

    theme of a fugue
  • Hapsburg Family

    Hapsburg Family
    ruler of Austria. Maria Teresa was enlightened and very supportive of the arts.
  • Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach

    Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
    was a German Classical period musician and composer, the fifth child and second (surviving) son of Johann Sebastian Bach and Maria Barbara Bach. He was a crucial composer in the transition between the Baroque and Classical periods, and one of the founders of the Classical style, composing in the Rococo and Classical periods
  • Franz Joseph Haydn

    Franz Joseph Haydn
    Haydn - Symphony No.94 ('Surprise') 2mvt
    Franz Joseph Haydn is the composer who, more than any other, epitomizes the aims and achievements of the Classical era. Perhaps his most important achievement was that he developed and evolved in countless subtle ways the most influential structural principle in the history of music: his perfection of the set of expectations known as sonata form made an epochal impact.
  • Maria Teresa

    Maria Teresa
    (13 May 1717 – 29 November 1780) was the only female ruler of the Habsburg dominions and the last of the House of Habsburg. The imperial family staged opera productions, often conducted by Charles VI, in which she relished participating. She was educated in drawing, painting, music and dancing – the disciplines which would have prepared her for the role of queen consort.
  • Singspiel

    an opera written in German and has spoken dialogue
  • Leopold Mozart

    Leopold Mozart
    Leopold Mozart Minuet (Notenbuch)
    (November 14, 1719 – May 28, 1787) was a German composer, conductor, teacher, and violinist. Mozart is best known today as the father and teacher of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and for his violin textbook Versuch einer gründlichen Violinschule.
  • Nicholas Esterhazy

    Nicholas Esterhazy
    (18 December 1714 – 28 September 1790) was a Hungarian prince, a member of the famous Esterházy family. His building of palaces, extravagant clothing, and taste for opera and other grand musical productions led to his being given the title "the Magnificent". He is remembered as the principal employer of the composer Joseph Haydn.
  • Haydn

    (31 March 1732 – 31 May 1809), known as Joseph Haydn, was an Austrian composer, one of the most prolific and prominent composers of the Classical period. He is often called the "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet" because of his important contributions to these forms. He was also instrumental in the development of the piano trio and in the evolution of sonata form.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791), was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. He composed over 600 works, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music. He is among the most enduringly popular of classical composers.
  • Mozart Family

    Mozart Family
    The Mozart family on tour: Leopold, Wolfgang, and Nannerl. Watercolor by Carmontelle
  • Johann Christian Bach

    Johann Christian Bach
    was a composer of the Classical era, the eleventh and youngest son of Johann Sebastian Bach. He is sometimes referred to as 'the London Bach' or 'the English Bach', due to his time spent living in the British capital. He is noted for influencing the concerto style of Mozart.
  • symphony

    is an extended musical composition in Western classical music, scored almost always for orchestra.
  • Johann Stamitz

    Johann Stamitz
    was a Czech composer and violinist. Johann was the father of Carl Stamitz and Anton Stamitz, also composers. His music reflects the transition of the baroque period to the classical era.
  • Rondo Form

    Haydn - Concerto for Trumpet CD 5 Track 4Haydn - String Quartet in E flat major - finale CD 5 Track 5is a word that has been used in music in a number of ways, most often in reference to a musical form, but also to a character-type that is distinct from the form. Although now called rondo form, the form started off in the Baroque period as the ritornello, from the Italian word ritornare meaning "to return" – indicating the return to the original theme or motif ("A"). The typical Baroque ritornello pattern is ABACABA. Although there are a few differences, some people use the two terms, rondo and
  • Minuet

    is a social dance of French origin for two people, usually in 3/4 time. The word was adapted from Italian minuetto and French menuet, and may have been from French menu meaning slender, small, referring to the very small steps, or from the early 17th-century popular group dances called branle à mener or amener. The term also describes the musical form which accompanied the dance, and subsequently developed more fully, often with a longer structure called the minuet and trio.
  • Baron von Swieten

    Baron von Swieten
    Baron Gottfried van Swieten (Leiden, October 29, 1733 - Vienna, March 29, 1803) was a diplomat, librarian, and government official who served the Austrian Empire during the 18th century. He was an enthusiastic amateur musician and is best remembered today as the patron of several great composers of the Classical era, including Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig van Beethoven.
  • Opera Seria

    Opera Seria
    Florian Gassmann OPERA SERIA, Alexandrina Pendatchanska as Stonatrilla
    is an Italian musical term which refers to the noble and "serious" style of Italian opera that predominated in Europe from the 1710s to c. 1770.
  • Period: to

    Period of Imitation

  • Sonata Allegro Form

    Sonata Allegro Form
    Mozart - Concerto for Flute & Harp - andantino 2nd mvt CD 5 Track 7Mozart - piano sonata in B flat major - Allegro 1st mvt CD 5 Track 6Sonata Allegro form was a development of the classical era. It represents a more open form than many of the earlier Baroque forms such as fugues, rondeau form, etc. While there is a formula that can be applied, there was not a rigid, formal concept for the form. Rather it evolved over the classical era & beyond. Sonata Allegro form can simplistically be described as an "ABA'" form.
  • Christoph Wilibald Gluck

    Christoph Wilibald Gluck
    was an opera composer of the early classical period. After many years at the Habsburg court at Vienna, Gluck brought about the practical reform of opera's dramaturgical practices that many intellectuals had been campaigning for over the years. With a series of radical new works in the 1760s, among them Orfeo ed Euridice and Alceste, he broke the stranglehold that Metastasian opera seria had enjoyed for much of the century.
  • Opera Reform

    Opera Reform
    The historical position of Christoph Willibald Gluck as the most important figure of the 18th-century reform movement was assured by the number of composers who claimed to be his legitimate successors & by the obvious influence his ideals exercised on figures such as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Among Gluck’s Italian followers were Antonio Salieri & Niccolò Piccinni, The Gluckian “reform” produced only Gluck’s own unique works, which may be described as a synthesis of French and Italian styles
  • Salieri

    (18 August 1750 – 7 May 1825) was an Italian classical composer, conductor and teacher who spent his adult life and career as a faithful subject of the Habsburg monarchy. Franz Schubert, Ludwig van Beethoven and Franz Liszt were among the most famous of his pupils.
  • Two Part/Binary Form

    Two Part/Binary Form
    is a way of structuring a piece of music in two related sections, both of which are usually repeated. Binary form was popular in the Baroque period, often used to structure movements from sonatas for keyboard instruments. It was also used for short, one-movement works. Around the middle of the 18th century, the form largely fell from use as the principal design of entire movements as sonata form & organic development gained prominence.
  • Sinfonia concertante

    Sinfonia  concertante
    is a musical form that emerged during the Classical period of Western music. It is essentially a mixture of the symphony and the concerto genres: a concerto in that one or more soloists (in the classical period, usually more than one) are on prominent display, and a symphony in that the soloists are nonetheless discernibly a part of the total ensemble and not preeminent.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Mozart in 1777. Portrait requested by Padre Martini for his gallery; Mozart with the Order of the Golden Spur which he received in 1770 as a 14-year old from Pope Clement XIV in Rome.
  • Franz Josep II

    Franz Josep II
    (1741 - 1790) son of Maria Teresa, ruled the Hapsburg empire. Was very supportive of the arts
  • String Quartet

    String Quartet
    is a musical ensemble of four string players — usually two violin players, a violist and a cellist — or a piece written to be performed by such a group. The string quartet is one of the most prominent chamber ensembles in classical music. The string quartet is widely seen as one of the most important forms in chamber music, with most major composers, from the late 18th century onwards, writing string quartets.
  • Divertimento

    Mozart-Divertimento K136-1
    is a musical genre, with most of its examples from the 18th century. The mood of the divertimento is most often lighthearted (as a result of being played at social functions) and it is generally composed for a small ensemble.
  • Mozart Family

    Mozart Family
    Family portrait from about 1780 by Johann Nepomuk della Croce: Nannerl, Wolfgang, Leopold. On the wall is a portrait of Mozart's mother, who had died in 1778.
  • Constanze Mozart

    Constanze Mozart
    Wolfgang & Constanze were married on 4 August 1782, The couple had six children, of which only two survived infancy:
    Raimund Leopold (17 Jun – 19 Aug 1783)
    Karl Thomas Mozart (21 Sep 1784 – 31 Oct 1858)
    Johann Thomas Leopold (18 Oct – 15 Nov 1786)
    Theresia Constanzia Adelheid Friedericke Maria Anna (27 Dec 1787 – 29 Jun 1788)
    Anna Maria (died soon after birth, 25 Dec 1789)
    Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart (26 Jul 1791 – 29 Jul 1844)
  • Seraglio

    Diana Damrau - Die Entführung aus dem Serail - act I aria
    (K. 384; The Abduction from the Seraglio; also known as Il Seraglio) is an opera Singspiel in three acts by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The German libretto is by Christoph Friedrich Bretzner with adaptations by Gottlieb Stephanie. The plot concerns the attempt of the hero Belmonte, assisted by his servant Pedrillo, to rescue his beloved Konstanze from the seraglio of the Pasha Selim.
  • Classical Sonata

    Classical Sonata
    Sonata form denotes a particularly fertile manner of organizing the musical structure of a single movement. It commonly occurs within the larger context of a multimovement scheme. Maturing in the second half of the 18th century, it provided the instrumental vehicle for much of the most profound musical thought until about the middle of the 19th century, and has continued to figure largely in the methods of composers down to the present day.
  • Marriage of Figaro

    Marriage of Figaro
    is an opera buffa (comic opera) composed in 1786 in four acts by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, with Italian libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte, based on a stage comedy by Pierre Beaumarchais, La folle journée, ou le Mariage d
    Mozart - Marriage Of Figaro - Overture
  • Opera Buffa

    Opera Buffa
    is a genre of opera. It was first used as an informal description of Italian comic operas variously classified by their authors as ‘commedia in musica’, It is especially associated with developments in Naples in the first half of the 18th century, whence its popularity spread to Rome and northern Italy. It was at first characterized by everyday settings, local dialects, and simple vocal writing, the main requirement being clear diction and facility with patter.
  • Count Waldstein

    Count Waldstein
    (24 March 1762, Vienna – 26 May 1823, Vienna) was a German nobleman and patron of the arts. A member of the Waldstein family and an early patron of Beethoven.
  • Don Giovanni

    Don Giovanni
    "The Commendatore Scene" Don Giovanni
    (K. 527; complete title: Il dissoluto punito, ossia il Don Giovanni, literally The Rake Punished, or Don Giovanni) is an opera in two acts with music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and with an Italian libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte.
  • Cosi Fan Tutte

    Cosi Fan Tutte
    Cosi fan tutte Mozart
    Mozart and Da Ponte took as a theme "fiancée swapping" which dates back to the 13th century, with notable earlier versions being those of Boccaccio's Decameron and Shakespeare's play Cymbeline. Elements from Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew are also present. Furthermore, it incorporates elements of the myth of Procris as found in Ovid's Metamorphoses,
  • Enlightenment

    was a cultural movement of intellectuals in 18th century Europe to mobilize the power of reason to reform society and advance knowledge. It promoted intellectual interchange and opposed intolerance and abuses in Church and state
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Ludwig van Beethoven
    baptized 17 December 1770 – 26 March 1827) was a German composer and pianist. The crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential composers of all time.
  • Christian Neefe

    Christian Neefe
    (5 February 1748 – 28 January 1798) was a German opera composer and conductor. He later became court organist in Bonn and was a teacher of Ludwig van Beethoven. He helped Beethoven produce some of his first works.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Posthumous painting by Barbara Krafft in 1819
  • The Magic Flute

    The Magic Flute
    Mozart - The Queen of the Night aria
    Video: Magic Flute - Queen of the Night
    Opera in two acts by Mozart; words by Emanuel Schikaneder and Gieseke. Produced in Vienna in the Theatre auf der Wieden
  • Hieronymus Colloredo

    Hieronymus Colloredo
    Hieronymus von Colleredo,1772-1812, was Prince- Archbishop of Saltzburg. He was a man of great influence and discrimination. Amongst othe endeavours, he was the first patron of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and always took a great interest in his career.
  • Franz Joseph Haydn

    Franz Joseph Haydn
    Haydn at the age of 60
  • Schenk

    (30 November 1753 – 29 December 1836) was an Austrian composer and teacher. Mozart was a good friend of Schenk and Beethoven studied under him in 1793.
  • Albrechtsberger

    February 3, 1736 - March 7, 1809
    Johann Georg Albrechtsberger was an Austrian musician, master of musical theory, and teacher of Hummel and Beethoven.
  • Symphonic Development

    can be for an orchetstra or a work for orchestra
    early pioneers: Stamitz & Sammartini
    1st & last movement in sonata allegro form: Exposition, Development, Recapitulation
    2nd movement: 2 part binary form
    3rd movement: minuet or scherzo
    last movement can also be in rondo form
  • Scherzo

    is a piece of music, often a movement from a larger piece such as a symphony or a sonata. Joseph Haydn wrote minuets which are very close to scherzi in tone, but it was Ludwig van Beethoven and Franz Schubert who first used the form widely, with Beethoven in particular turning the polite rhythm of the minuet into a much more intense — and sometimes even savage — dance.
  • Period: to

    Period of Externalization

    Beethoven's 2nd period of composition
  • Heroic Period

    Heroic Period
    Beethoven's 2nd period of composition style (1802 - 1816). also know as the period of externalization.
  • Paganini

    (27 October 1782 – 27 May 1840) was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was one of the most celebrated violin virtuosi of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique. His Caprice No. 24 in A minor, Op. 1, is among the best known of his compositions, and has served as an inspiration for many prominent composers.
  • Fidelio

    is a German opera in two acts by Ludwig van Beethoven. It is Beethoven's only opera.
  • Rescue Opera

    Rescue Opera
    is a modern term used to describe a popular genre of opera in the late 18th and early 19th century. Generally, rescue operas deal with the rescue of a main character from danger and end with a happy dramatic resolution in which lofty humanistic ideals triumph over base motives. Stylistically and thematically, they were influenced by the French opéra comique, and in turn influenced German Romantic opera and French grand opera.
  • Beethoven Symphony #5

    Beethoven Symphony #5
    Allegro con brio (Sonata Allegro Form) CD 6 Track 9
    The Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67, was written by Ludwig van Beethoven in 1804–08. This symphony is one of the most popular and best-known compositions in all of classical music, and one of the most often played symphonies.] It comprises four movements: an opening sonata, an andante, and a fast scherzo which leads attacca to the finale.
  • Romantic Symphony (Composers)

    Haydn, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Liszt, Strauss, Tchaikovsky
  • Spohr

    (5 April 1784 – 22 October 1859) was a German composer, violinist and conductor.
  • Erlkoenig

    is a poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. It depicts the death of a child assailed by a supernatural being, the Erlking or "Erlkönig" (suggesting the literal translation "alder king", but see below). It was originally composed by Goethe as part of a 1782 ballad opera entitled Die Fischerin. The poem has been used as the text for Lieder (art songs for voice and piano) by many classical composers, the most famous undoubtedly being that of Franz Schubert, his Opus 1 (D. 328).
  • Period: to

    Period of Reflection

  • Barber of Seville

    Barber of Seville
    is an opera buffa in two acts by Gioachino Rossini with a libretto by Cesare Sterbini. The libretto was based on Pierre Beaumarchais's comedy Le Barbier de Séville (1775), which was originally an opéra comique, or a mixture of spoken play with music.
  • Franz Schubert

    Franz Schubert
    January 31, 1797 – November 19, 1828) was an Austrian composer. Although he died at an early age, Schubert was tremendously prolific. He wrote some 600 Lieder, nine symphonies (including the famous "Unfinished Symphony"), liturgical music, operas, some incidental music, and a large body of chamber and solo piano music.
  • Lieder

    is a German and Dutch word meaning "song"; among English speakers, however, the word is used primarily as a term for European romantic songs, also known as art songs. The term is usually used to describe songs composed to a German poem of reasonably high literary aspirations, especially during the nineteenth century, beginning with Carl Loewe, Heinrich Marschner, and Franz Schubert and culminating with Hugo Wolf. The poetry forming the basis for Lieder often centers upon pastoral themes, or them
  • Rossini

    (February 29, 1792 – November 13, 1868) was an Italian composer who wrote 39 operas as well as sacred music, chamber music, songs, and some instrumental and piano pieces. His best-known operas include the Italian comedies Il barbiere di Siviglia (The Barber of Seville) and La Cenerentola and the French-language epics Moïse et Pharaon and Guillaume Tell (William Tell).
  • German Romantic Opera

    was a genre of early nineteenth-century German opera, developed from the opéras comiques of the French Revolution. Weber's Der Freischuetz inaugurated the genre, which increasingly became associated with a distinctively German national style, as exemplified by composers such as Spohr. Themes explored included Nature, the supernatural, the Middle Ages and popular culture, specifically folklore. Musically, German folksong also served as an inspiration.
  • Weber

    (1786 – 1826) was a German composer, conductor, pianist, guitarist and critic, one of the first significant composers of the Romantic school.
  • Der Freischutz

    is an opera in three acts by Carl Maria von Weber with a libretto by Friedrich Kind. It is considered the first important German Romantic opera, especially in its national identity and stark emotionality.
  • Beethoven - Symphony #9

    Beethoven - Symphony #9
    The Symphony No. 9 in D minor: Choral, Op. 125, is the final complete symphony of Ludwig van Beethoven. Completed in 1824, the symphony is one of the best known works of the Western classical repertoire,[1] and has been adapted for use as the European Anthem. It is considered by critics to be one of Beethoven's masterpieces and one of the greatest musical compositions ever written.
  • Guillaume Tell

    Guillaume Tell
    is an opera in four acts by Gioachino Rossini to a French libretto by Etienne de Jouy and Hippolyte Bis, based on Friedrich Schiller's play Wilhelm Tell. Based on the legend of William Tell, this opera was Rossini's last, even though the composer lived for nearly forty more years. The William Tell Overture, with its famous finale, is a major part of the concert and recording repertoire.
  • Period: to


  • Richard Wagner

    Richard Wagner
    (1813 – 1883) was a German composer, conductor, theatre director and essayist, primarily known for his operas (or "music dramas", as they were later called). Wagner's compositions, particularly those of his later period, are notable for their complex texture, rich harmonies and orchestration, and the elaborate use of leitmotifs: musical themes associated with individual characters, places, ideas or plot elements.
  • leitmotif

    sometimes written leit-motif, is a musical term referring to a recurring theme, associated with a particular person, place, or idea. It is closely related to the musical idea of idée fixe. The term itself comes from the German Leitmotiv, literally meaning "leading motif", or, perhaps more accurately, "guiding motif."
  • Chopin

    22 February or 1 March 1810 – 17 October 1849) was a Polish composer, virtuoso pianist, and music teacher of French–Polish parentage. He was one of the great masters of Romantic music. He is also known as "the poet of the piano".
  • French Grand Opera

    French Grand Opera
    s a genre of 19th-century opera generally in four or five acts, characterised by large-scale casts and orchestras, and (in their original productions) lavish and spectacular design and stage effects, normally with plots based on or around dramatic historic events. The term is particularly applied to certain productions of the Paris Opéra from the late 1820s to around 1850, and has sometimes been used to designate the Paris Opéra itself, but is also used in a broader application in respect of con
  • Franz Liszt

    Franz Liszt
    (October 22, 1811 – July 31, 1886) was a 19th century Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist, conductor, and teacher. He was an important and influential composer, a notable piano teacher, a conductor who contributed significantly to the modern development of the art, and a benefactor to other composers and performers, notably Richard Wagner, Hector Berlioz, Camille Saint-Saëns, Edvard Grieg and Alexander Borodin.
  • Giuseppe Verdi

    Giuseppe Verdi
    10 October 1813 – 27 January 1901) was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of the 19th century.
    La Traviata
  • Realist Controversy

    radical composers wanted to add everything new to music including insruments, large scale orchestras etc.
    Liszt, Mahler, Berlioz
  • Meyerbeer

    (5 September 1791 – 2 May 1864) was a noted German opera composer, and the first great exponent of "grand opera."
  • Concert Overture (composers)

    Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Schubert
  • symphonic poem (composers)

    Liszt, Tchaikovsky, Strauss
  • Music Drama

    type of serious musical theatre, first advanced by Richard Wagner. This new type of work was intended as a return to the Greek drama as Wagner understood it—the public expression of national human aspirations in symbolic form by enacting racial myths and using music for the full expression of the dramatic action. Wagner’s emphasis on opera as drama merely resumed and developed the ideas of Claudio Monteverdi and Christoph Gluck.
  • Bizet

    (25 October 1838 – 3 June 1875) was a French composer and pianist of the Romantic era. He is best known for the opera Carmen.
  • Russian Five

    Russian Five
    group of five Russian composers—César Cui, Aleksandr Borodin, Mily Balakirev, Modest Mussorgsky, and Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov—who in the 1860s banded together in an attempt to create a truly national school of Russian music, free of the stifling influence of Italian opera, German lieder, and other western European forms.
  • Monet, Manet, Degas

    Monet, Manet, Degas
    was a 19th-century art movement that originated with a group of Paris-based artists whose independent exhibitions brought them to prominence during the 1870s and 1880s. The name of the style is derived from the title of a Claude Monet work, Impression, soleil levant (Impression, Sunrise), which provoked the critic Louis Leroy to coin the term in a satiric review published in the Parisian newspaper Le Charivari.
  • Renoir

    was a French artist who was a leading painter in the development of the Impressionist style. As a celebrator of beauty, and especially feminine sensuality, it has been said that "Renoir is the final representative of a tradition which runs directly from Rubens to Watteau."
  • Mallarme, Verlaine, Rimbaud

    Mallarme was a French poet and critic. He was a major French symbolist poet, and his work anticipated and inspired several revolutionary artistic schools of the early 20th century, such as Dadaism, Surrealism, and Futurism.
    Verlaine was a French poet associated with the Symbolist movement. He is considered one of the greatest representatives of the fin de siècle in international and French poetry
  • French Opera Comique

    French Opera Comique
    is a genre of French opera that contains spoken dialogue and arias. It emerged out of the popular opéra comiques en vaudevilles of the Fair Theatres of St Germain and St Laurent, which combined existing popular tunes with spoken sections. Associated with the Paris theatre of the same name, the Opéra-Comique, opéra comique is not always comic or light in nature — indeed, Carmen, probably the most famous opéra comique, is a tragedy.
  • Carmen

    The opera premiered at the Opéra-Comique of Paris on 3 March 1875, but its opening run was denounced by the majority of critics. It was almost withdrawn after its fourth or fifth performance, and although this was avoided, ultimately having 48 performances in its first run, it did little to bolster sagging receipts at the Opéra-Comique. In October 1875 it was produced in Vienna which began its path to worldwide popularity. It was not staged again at the Opéra Comique until 1883.
  • Characteristics of Impressionistic Music

    focuses on a suggestion and an atmosphere rather than on a strong emotion or the depiction of a story as in program music. Musical Impressionism occurred as a reaction to the excesses of the Romantic era. Impressionist music was tending to make more use of dissonance. Rather uncommon scales such as whole tone scale are also typical for this movement & were favoring short forms such as nocturne, arabesque and prelude.
  • Giacomo Puccini

    Giacomo Puccini
    22 December 1858 – 29 November 1924) was an Italian composer whose operas, including La bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, and Turandot, are among the most frequently performed in the standard repertoire.
  • Cui

    was a Russian of French and Lithuanian descent. His profession was as an army officer and a teacher of fortifications; his avocational life has particular significance in the history of music, in that he was a composer and music critic; in this sideline he is known as a member of The Five, the group of Russian composers under the leadership of Mily Balakirev dedicated to the production of a specifically Russian type of music.
  • Verismo

    movement in music that deals with real human life and problems, realistic settings and usually very tragic
  • Mahler

    7 July 1860 – 18 May 1911) was a late-Romantic Austrian composer and one of the leading conductors of his generation.
  • Borodin

    was a Russian Romantic composer and chemist of Georgian–Russian parentage. He was a member of the group of composers called The Five (or "The Mighty Handful"), who were dedicated to producing a specifically Russian kind of art music.
  • Balakirev

    was a Russian pianist, conductor and composer known today primarily for his work promoting musical nationalism and his encouragement of more famous Russian composers, notably Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. In the late-1850s and early 1860s Balakirev brought together the composers now known as The Five.
  • Mussorgsky

    one of the Russian composers known as 'The Five', was an innovator of Russian music in the romantic period. He strove to achieve a uniquely Russian musical identity, often in deliberate defiance of the established conventions of Western music.
  • Rimsky-Korsakov

    was a Russian composer, and a member of the group of composers known as The Five. He was a master of orchestration.
  • Scott Joplin

    Scott Joplin
    was an American composer and pianist. He achieved fame for his unique ragtime compositions, and was dubbed the "King of Ragtime." During his brief career, Joplin wrote 44 original ragtime pieces, one ragtime ballet, and two operas. One of his first pieces, the "Maple Leaf Rag", became ragtime's first and most influential hit, and has been recognized as the archetypal rag.
  • Debussy

    (22 August 1862 – 25 March 1918) was a French composer. Along with Maurice Ravel, he was one of the most prominent figures working within the field of impressionist music, though he himself intensely disliked the term when applied to his compositions. Debussy is among the most important of all French composers, and a central figure in European music of the turn of the 20th century.
  • Songs of a Wayfarer

    is Gustav Mahler's first song cycle. While he had previously written other lieder, they were grouped by source of text or time of composition as opposed to common theme. The four-movement cycle, for low voice (but often performed by a female singer), was inspired by the conclusion of Mahler's unhappy love affair with soprano Johanna Richter, whom he met while conductor of the opera house in Kassel, Germany
  • work songs

    is a piece of music closely connected to a specific form of work, either sung while conducting a task (often to coordinate timing) or a song linked to a task or trade which might be a connected narrative, description, or protest song.
  • Scriabin

    was a Russian composer and pianist who initially developed a lyrical and idiosyncratic tonal language inspired by the music of Frédéric Chopin
  • Prelude to an Afternoon of a faun

    Prelude to an Afternoon of a faun
    is a symphonic poem for orchestra by Claude Debussy, approximately 10 minutes in duration. It was first performed in Paris on December 22, 1894, conducted by Gustave Doret
  • Characteristics of Debussy's Music

    Characteristics of Debussy's Music
    • Glittering passages and webs of figurations which distract from occasional absence of tonality;
    • Frequent use of parallel chords which are "in essence not harmonies at all, but rather 'chordal melodies', enriched unisons"; some writers describe these as non-functional harmonies;
    • Bitonality, or at least bitonal chords;
    • Use of the whole-tone and pentatonic scale;
    • Unprepared modulations, "without any harmonic bridge."
  • Tom Turpin

    Tom Turpin
    was an African-American composer of ragtime music. Turpin himself is credited with the first published rag by an African-American, his "Harlem Rag" of 1897 (it was composed by 1892, a year before ragtime's introduction to the world at the 1893 Worlds Fair). His other published rags include "Bowery Buck," "Ragtime Nightmare," "St. Louis Rag," and "The Buffalo Rag".
  • blues

    is the name given to both a musical form and a music genre that originated in African-American communities of primarily the Deep South of the US at the end of the 19th century from spirituals, work songs, field hollers, shouts and chants, and rhymed simple narrative ballads. The blues form, ubiquitous in jazz, rhythm and blues, and rock and roll is characterized by specific chord progressions, of which the twelve-bar blues chord progression is the most common.
  • field hollers

    were African American styles of music from before the American Civil War, this style of music is closely related to spirituals in the sense that it expressed religious feelings and included subtle hints about ways of escaping slavery, among other things. Slaves in New Orleans had a field area called Congo Square in which they were allowed time on Sundays to dance and sing more freely than they could on the plantations.
  • Nocturnes

    is an orchestral composition (L 91) in three movements by the French composer Claude Debussy. It was completed on 15 December 1899.
  • Period: to

    20th century

  • Nauges (Clouds), Fetes (Festival), Sirenes (mermaids)

    The three movements are:
    I. Nuages ("Clouds")
    II. Fêtes ("Festivals")
    III. Sirènes ("Sirens")
    The three movements were inspired by a series of impressionist paintings, also entitled "Nocturnes" by James Abbott McNeill Whistler.
  • Jelly Roll Morton

    Jelly Roll Morton
    was an American ragtime and early jazz pianist, bandleader and composer. Morton claimed to have invented jazz outright in 1902 — much to the derision of later musicians and critics.
  • Louis Chauvin

    Louis Chauvin
    Louis Chauvin was a ragtime jazz pioneer and contemporary of Scott Joplin. Little is known about Chauvin since he died at such a young age and had yet to make any recordings. He did, however, leave three published compositions behind, one of which, “Heliptrope Bouquet” was written with Joplin. The other two were “Babe, It’s Too Long Off” and “The Moon is Shining in the Skies.”
  • Kid Ory

    Kid Ory
    was a jazz trombonist and bandleader. Ory was a banjo player during his youth and it is said that his ability to play the banjo helped him develop "tailgate," a particular style of playing the trombone. In "tailgate" style the trombone plays a rhythmic line underneath the trumpets and cornets. House on Jackson Avenue, New Orleans, was Ory's residence in the 1910s. He had one of the best-known bands in New Orleans in the 1910s, hiring many of the great jazz musicians of the city.
  • Stravinsky

    was a Russian-born, naturalized French, later naturalized American composer, pianist, and conductor. He is widely acknowledged as one of the most important and influential composers of 20th century music.
    Russian Period (circa 1908–1919)
    Neoclassical Period (circa 1920–1954)
    Serial Period (1954–1968)
  • Serge Diaghilev

    Serge Diaghilev
    was a Russian art critic, patron, ballet impresario and founder of the Ballets Russes, from which many famous dancers and choreographers would arise. Diaghilev heard Stravinsky's early orchestral works Fireworks and Scherzo fantastique, and was impressed enough to ask Stravinsky to arrange some pieces by Chopin for the Ballets Russes. In 1910, he commissioned his first score from Stravinsky, The Firebird. Petrushka (1911) and The Rite of Spring (1913)
  • Firebird

    is a 1910 ballet created by the composer Igor Stravinsky and choreographer Michel Fokine. The ballet is based on Russian folk tales of the magical glowing bird of the same name that is both a blessing and a curse to its captor. The ballet has historic significance not only as Stravinsky's 'breakthrough piece', but also as the beginning of the collaboration between Diaghilev and Stravinsky that would also produce Petrushka and The Rite of Spring.
  • Petruska

    s a ballet with music by Russian composer Igor Stravinsky, composed in 1910–11 and revised in 1947. Petrushka is a story of a Russian traditional puppet, Petrushka, who is made of straw and with a bag of sawdust as his body, but who comes to life and develops emotions.
  • Ragtime

    is an original musical genre which enjoyed its peak popularity between 1897 and 1918. Its main characteristic trait is its syncopated, or "ragged," rhythm. It began as dance music in the red-light districts of American cities such as St. Louis and New Orleans years before being published as popular sheet music for piano. Ragtime originated in African American music in the late 19th century, descending from the jigs and march music played by black bands.
  • syncopation

    includes a variety of rhythms which are in some way unexpected in that they deviate from the strict succession of regularly spaced strong and weak but also powerful beats in a meter (pulse). These include a stress on a normally unstressed beat or a rest where one would normally be stressed. "If a part of the measure that is usually unstressed is accented, the rhythm is considered to be syncopated."
  • Joe "king" Oliver

    Joe "king" Oliver
    was a jazz cornet player and bandleader. He was particularly noted for his playing style, pioneering the use of mutes. Also a notable composer, he wrote many tunes still played regularly, including "Dipper Mouth Blues", "Sweet Like This", "Canal Street Blues", and "Doctor Jazz". He was the mentor and teacher of Louis Armstrong. His influence was such that Armstrong claimed, "if it had not been for Joe Oliver, jazz would not be what it is today".
  • Hudy Ledbetter (Leadbelly)

    Hudy Ledbetter (Leadbelly)
    was an iconic American folk and blues musician, notable for his strong vocals, his virtuosity on the twelve-string guitar, and the songbook of folk standards he introduced. He is best known as Lead Belly.
  • Rite of Spring

    Rite of Spring
    is a ballet with music by Igor Stravinsky; choreography by Vaslav Nijinsky; and concept, set design and costumes by Nicholas Roerich. It was produced by Sergei Diaghilev for his Ballets Russes ballet company and had its premiere in Paris on 29 May 1913. The music's innovative complex rhythmic structures, timbres, and use of dissonance have made it a seminal 20th century composition.
  • Prokofiev

    was a Russian composer, pianist and conductor who mastered numerous musical genres and is regarded as one of the major composers of the 20th century.
  • pedal point

    pedal point
    In tonal music, a pedal point (also pedal tone, pedal note, organ point, or pedal) is a sustained tone, typically in the bass, during which at least one foreign, i.e., dissonant harmony is sounded in the other parts.
  • Aaron Copland

    Aaron Copland
    was an American classical composer, composition teacher, writer, and later in his career a conductor of his own and other American music. He was instrumental in forging a distinctly American style of composition, He is best known to the public for the works he wrote in the 1930s and 40s in a deliberately more accessible style than his earlier pieces, including the ballets Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid, Rodeo and his Fanfare for the Common Man.
  • Nadia Boulanger

    Nadia Boulanger
    was a French composer, conductor and teacher who taught many composers and performers of the 20th century. From a musical family, she achieved early honours as a student at the Paris Conservatoire, but believing that her talent as a composer was inferior to that of her younger sister Lili, she gave up composing and became a teacher. In that capacity she influenced generations of young composers, including many from the U.S., beginning with Aaron Copland.
  • The Originial Dixiland Jazz Band

    The Originial Dixiland Jazz Band
    was a New Orleans, Dixieland Jazz band that made the first jazz recordings early in 1917. Their "Livery Stable Blues" became the first jazz single issued. The group composed and made the first recordings of many jazz standards, the most famous being Tiger Rag. In late 1917 the spelling of the band's name was changed to Original Dixieland Jazz Band. The band consisted of five musicians who previously had played in the Papa Jack Laine bands, a diverse and racially integrated group of musicians.
  • Pulcinella Suite

    Pulcinella Suite
    is a ballet by Igor Stravinsky based on an 18th-century play — Pulcinella is a character originating from Commedia dell'arte. The ballet premiered in Paris on 15 May 1920 under the baton of Ernest Ansermet. The dancer Léonide Massine created both the libretto and choreography, and Pablo Picasso designed the original costumes and sets. It was commissioned by Sergei Diaghilev.
  • Fletcher Henderson

    Fletcher Henderson
    As the big band era started to simmer, Fletcher Henderson distinguished himself as one of the best arrangers and big band leaders. His main emphasis while arranging was on soloists, and often, in his voicings he pitted saxes against brass. Henderson is also known for perfecting the block voicing technique. Henderson learned to play the piano from his mother who was a classical piano teacher. His knowledge in music theory, and his ability to read music fluently helpled him to succeed in blues.
  • Classic or Urban Blues

    Classic female blues was an early form of blues music, popular in the 1920s. Popular singers like Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith and Ethel Waters were among the first blues artists to be recorded and were instrumental in spreading the popularity of the blues.
  • Louis Armstrong

    Louis Armstrong
    was an American jazz trumpeter and singer from New Orleans, Louisiana. With his instantly recognizable deep and distinctive gravelly voice, Armstrong was also an influential singer, demonstrating great dexterity as an improviser, bending the lyrics and melody of a song for expressive purposes. He was also greatly skilled at scat singing, vocalizing using sounds and syllables instead of actual lyrics.
  • Fats Waller

    Fats Waller
    born Thomas Wright Waller, was a jazz pianist, organist, composer, singer, and comedic entertainer. Waller's touch varied and he was a master of dynamics and tension and release. He played with many performers, from Nat Shilkret and Gene Austin to Erskine Tate to Adelaide Hall, but his greatest success came with his own five- or six-piece combo, "Fats Waller and his Rhythm"
  • Creole Jazz Band

    Creole Jazz Band
    King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band was one of the best and most important bands in early Jazz. The Creole Jazz Band was made up of the cream of New Orleans Hot Jazz musicians, featuring Baby Dodds on drums, Honore Dutrey on trombone, Bill Johnson on bass, Louis Armstrong on second cornet, Johnny Dodds on clarinet, Lil Hardin-Armstrong on piano, and the band's leader, King Oliver on cornet. In 1922 Armstrong received a telegram from his mentor Joe Oliver, asking him to join the band in Chicago.
  • Count Basie

    Count Basie
    was an American jazz pianist, organist, bandleader, and composer. Basie led his jazz orchestra almost continuously for nearly 50 years. Many notable musicians came to prominence under his direction, including tenor saxophonists Lester Young and Herschel Evans, trumpeters Buck Clayton and Harry "Sweets" Edison and singers Jimmy Rushing and Joe Williams. Basie's theme songs were "One O'Clock Jump" and "April In Paris".
  • Dorsey Brothers

    Dorsey Brothers
    were a studio group fronted by musicians Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey. They started recording under their name in 1928 with a series of studio recordings for the OKeh label (they had come to New York in the mid-1920s and were among the most sought-after musicians). Always just a studio group, members (during the 1928-1934 period) included nearly all of the great white jazz musicians playing around New York City
  • Papa Charlie Jackson

    Papa Charlie Jackson
    was an early American bluesman and songster. He played a hybrid banjo guitar and ukulele, his recording career beginning in 1924.
  • ostinato

    is a motif or phrase which is persistently repeated in the same musical voice. An ostinato is always a succession of equal sounds, wherein each note always has the same weight or stress. The repeating idea may be a rhythmic pattern, part of a tune, or a complete melody in itself.
  • Bix Beiderbecke

    Bix Beiderbecke
    was an American jazz cornetist, jazz pianist, and composer. With Louis Armstrong, Beiderbecke was one of the most influential jazz soloists of the 1920s.
  • The Red Hot Peppers

    The Red Hot Peppers
    Jelly Roll assembled a group of musicians who could play in the New Orleans style and called them the Red Hot Peppers. Many of the musicians came from Lil Hardin-Armstrong's recently disbanded Dreamland Syncopators. The tracks recorded in Chicago in 1926 and 1927 are considered some of the finest recordings in the "Hot Style".
  • Glenn MIller

    Glenn MIller
    was an American jazz musician, arranger, composer, and bandleader in the swing era. He was one of the best-selling recording artists from 1939 to 1943, leading one of the best known "Big Bands". Miller's notable recordings include "In the Mood", "American Patrol", "Chattanooga Choo Choo", ""A String of Pearls"", "Tuxedo Junction", "Moonlight Serenade", "Little Brown Jug" and "Pennsylvania 6-5000".
  • Blind Lemon Jefferson

    Blind Lemon Jefferson
    was a blues singer and guitarist from Texas. He was one of the most popular blues singers of the 1920s, and has been titled "Father of the Texas Blues". Jefferson's singing and self-accompaniment were distinctive as a result of his high-pitched voice and originality on the guitar. He was not influential on some younger blues singers of his generation, as they did not seek to imitate him as they did other commercially successful artists.
  • James P. Johnson

    James P. Johnson
    was an American pianist and composer. A pioneer of the stride style of jazz piano, he was a model for Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Art Tatum and Fats Waller. Johnson composed many hit tunes including "Charleston" and "Carolina Shout" and remained the acknowledged king of New York jazz pianists until he was dethroned c. 1933 by the recently arrived Art Tatum. His influence and success is often overlooked.
  • Gauguin, Matisse, Picasso

    Gauguin, Matisse, Picasso
    20th-century French art developed out of the Impressionism and Post-Impressionism that dominated French art at the end of the 19th century. The first half of the 20th century in France saw the even more revolutionary experiments of cubism, dada and surrealism, artistic movements that would have a major impact on western, and eventually world, art.
  • Duke Ellington

    Duke Ellington
    was an American composer, pianist, and big band leader. Ellington wrote over 1,000 compositions.
  • Schoenberg, Berg, Webern

    Schoenberg, Berg, Webern
    Schoenberg's approach, both in terms of harmony and development, is among the major landmarks of 20th century musical thought; at least three generations of composers in the European and American traditions have consciously extended his thinking or, in some cases, passionately reacted against it. During the rise of the Nazi Party in Austria, his music was labeled, alongside jazz, as degenerate art.
  • Dizzy Gillespie

    Dizzy Gillespie
    was an American jazz trumpet player, bandleader, singer, and composer dubbed "the sound of surprise". Together with Charlie Parker, he was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz.
  • Charlie Parker

    Charlie Parker
    famously called Bird or Yardbird, was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. Parker, with Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, is widely considered to have been one of the most influential jazz musicians. Parker played a leading role in the development of bebop, a form of jazz characterized by fast tempos, virtuoso technique, and improvisation based on harmonic structure. Parker's innovative approaches to melody, rhythm, and harmony exercised enormous influence on his contemporaries.
  • Robert Johnson

    Robert Johnson
    was an American blues singer and musician. His landmark recordings from 1936–37 display a combination of singing, guitar skills, and songwriting talent that have influenced later generations of musicians. Johnson's shadowy, poorly documented life and death at age 27 have given rise to much legend, including a Faustian myth. As an itinerant performer who played mostly on street corners, in juke joints, and at Saturday night dances, Johnson enjoyed little commercial success or public recognition.
  • Bebop or Bop

    is a style of jazz characterized by fast tempo, instrumental virtuosity and improvisation based on the combination of harmonic structure and melody. It was developed in the early and mid-1940s. It first surfaced in musicians' argot some time during the first two years of American involvement in the Second World War. This style of jazz ultimately became synonymous with modern jazz, as either category reached a certain final maturity in the 1960s.
  • Gerry Mulligan

    Gerry Mulligan
    was an American jazz saxophonist, clarinetist, composer and arranger. Though Mulligan is primarily known as one of the leading baritone saxophonists in jazz history – playing the instrument with a light and airy tone in the era of cool jazz – he was also a notable arranger, working with Claude Thornhill, Miles Davis, Stan Kenton, and others.
  • John Lewis

    John Lewis
    was an American jazz pianist and composer best known as the musical director of the Modern Jazz Quartet. Born in LaGrange, Illinois and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he learned classical music and piano from his mother starting at the age of seven. He continued his musical training at the University of New Mexico and also studied anthropology. He served in the Army in World War II. While stationed in France on a three-year tour of duty, he met and performed with Kenny Clarke.
  • Maynard Ferguson

    Maynard Ferguson
    was a Canadian jazz musician and bandleader. He came to prominence playing in Stan Kenton's orchestra, before forming his own band in 1957. He was noted for being able to play accurately in a remarkably high register, and for his bands, which served as stepping stones for up-and-coming talent
  • Stan Kenton

    Stan Kenton
    was a pianist, composer, and arranger who led a highly innovative, influential, and often controversial American jazz orchestra. In later years he was widely active as an educator.
  • Ornette Coleman

    Ornette Coleman
    is an American saxophonist, violinist, trumpeter and composer. He was one of the major innovators of the free jazz movement of the 1960s.
  • Cool Jazz

    Cool Jazz
    is a style of modern jazz music that arose following the Second World War. Musicians mixed with the bebop musicians already there and were influenced by the "smooth" sound of saxophonist Lester Young. The style that emerged became known as Cool Jazz because it avoided the aggressive tempos of bebop. Cool Jazz included intricate arrangements, innovative forms, and songs having a thoroughly composed sound, although they did include improvised sections.
  • Miles Davis

    Miles Davis
    was an American jazz musician, trumpeter, bandleader, and composer. Widely considered one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century, Miles Davis was, with his musical groups, at the forefront of several major developments in jazz music, including bebop, cool jazz, hard bop, modal jazz, and jazz fusion.
  • Free Jazz

    is an approach to jazz music that was first developed in the 1950s and 1960s. Though the music produced by free jazz pioneers varied widely, the common feature was a dissatisfaction with the limitations of bebop, hard bop, and modal jazz, which had developed in the 1940s and 1950s. Each in their own way, free jazz musicians attempted to alter, extend, or break down the conventions of jazz, often by discarding hitherto invariable features of jazz, such as fixed chord changes or tempos.
  • Charlemagne created one unified church body for music

    Charlemagne created one unified church body for music
    The Frankish emperor Charlemagne took an intense interest in church music, and its propagation and adequate performance throughout his empire. He not only caused liturgical music to flourish in his own time, throughout his empire in Western Europe, but he laid the foundations for the subsequent musical culture of the region. The emperor's agents and representatives were ordered to watch over the faithful carrying out of his orders regarding music. He created a single church body for music.
  • Musica Enchiriadis

    Musica Enchiriadis
    Early Polyphony - Sit Gloria Domini - an example of parallel organum taken from Musica Enchiriadis CD 1 Track 3
    is an anonymous musical treatise from the 9th century. It is the first surviving attempt to establish a system of rules for polyphony in classical music, especially parallel organum.
  • Parallel Organum

    Parallel Organum
     existing chant is sung in perfect intervals in strict motion all the way through
     2 voices
     perfect interval P4, P5 and 8ve
     Latin
     during the Carolingian Period
  • Period: to Dec 31, 1000

    Carolingian Period of Music

    started to add extra words and/or music to an existing chant = Trope
    Trope led to the first polyphony => parallel organum: existing chant is sung in Latin in perfect intervals in strict motion all thw way through