Music History

  • 5000 BCE


    percussion, 5500 B.C, China Drums
  • 2000 BCE


    percussion, 2000 B.C, Asia Xylophone
  • 1500 BCE


    brass, 1500 B.C, Egypt History of the Trumpets
  • 500


    percussion, 500 AD, China Gong
  • 900


    woodwind, 900 B.C, China History of the Flute
  • 1300

    Fugue - Baroque Period

    "Fugue, in music, a compositional procedure characterized by the systematic imitation of a principal theme (called the subject) in simultaneously sounding melodic lines (counterpoint)."A prominent composer that uses the fugue style is Beethoven. This style first appeared in around the 14th century.
  • 1388


    woodwind, 14th century, Europe Britannica
  • 1450


    brass, 1450, Belgium History of the Trombone
  • 1498


    string, 16th century, Spain Britannica
  • 1500


    string, 1500s, Italy A Breif History of the Violin
  • 1500

    Intermezzo - Romantic Period

    In the 19th century, “intermezzo” was often used as a title for light instrumental pieces, such as the piano intermezzi composed by Franz Schubert and Johannes Brahms. Giovanni Battista and Pergolesi Georg Benda were key people of this style/type of composition.
  • 1501


    woodwind, 16th century, Northern Italy History of the Clarinet
  • 1561

    Sonata - Classical Period

    Sonata is a type of musical composition that is usually played on instruments. They also contain two to four movements or sections. Beethoven was a prominent user of this style. Sonata was first used in 1561.
  • Prelude - Romantic Period

    Prelude, musical composition, usually brief, that is generally played as an introduction to another, larger musical piece. The most notable composer of preludes, J.S. Bach, gave each prelude its own distinct character. Prominent composers were Bach and Chopin. In the 17th century, Preludes started being written by organists.
  • Transition from Baroque to Classical Music

    Structure of Baroque style, was "dignified seriousness" and "impressive grandeur". As compared to Classical music, which has a lighter and clearer texture. Frequent changes in mood and timbre were more common in Classical music than Baroque. From Baroque, Classical music became more simple.
    Music 101
  • Banjo

    string, 17th century, North America/Caribbean Banjo
  • Oboe

    woodwind, 17th century, France History of the Oboe
  • Cantata - Baroque Period

    Cantata is now, loosely, any work for voices and instruments. The early cantatas were written by Italian composers. A key person who used cantata is Bach. The word first appeared in 1620-29, from an Italian composer's work.
  • Horn

    brass, 1650, France Britannica
  • Harmony - Baroque Period

    Harmony can be thought of as chords that laid the foundation for the melody. Harmony became a fundamental element of Western Music. Mozart is a composer who used a harmonic style.
  • Arcangelo Corelli - Baroque Period

    Born - Feb. 17, 1653, Died - January 8, 1713
    Birthplace - Fusignano, near Imola, Italy,
    Corelli was an Italian violinist and composer known for his influence on the development of violin style and for his sonatas. In 1702, Corelli went to Naples where he possibly played in the presence of a king. His notable works include, "Sonata op.1", "12 Sonata for Violin and Violone", and "Christmas Concerto".
  • Antonio Vivaldi - Baroque Period

    Born - March 4, 1678, Died - July 28, 1741
    Birthplace - Venice, Italy
    Vivaldi made his debut as a composer of sacred vocal music in 1713. Some of his notable works include, "Ottone in Villa", "The Four Seasons", and “Violin Concerto in B Minor”. Vivaldi was influenced by Corelli.
  • Johann Sebastian Bach - Baroque Period

    Born - March 21, 1685, Died - July 28, 1750
    Birthplace - Eisenach, Germany
    Bach is regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time. Bach's music was "revived" in the 1800s. Some of his notable works include, "Brandenburg Concertos", Christmas Oratorio*", and "God is My King". Bach was influenced by Vivaldi and Pachelbel.
  • George Frideric Handel - Baroque Period

    Born - Februrary 23, 1685, Died - April 14, 1759
    Birthplace - Halle, Bradenburg (Germany)
    Handel’s years in Italy greatly influenced the development of his musical style. He spent about 4 years in Italy where he met some of the greatest Italian musicians. Handel's notable works include, “Acis and Galatea” , and “Agrippina”, “Almira”. Britannica
  • Piano

    string, 1700, Italy The origins of the Piano
  • Tambourin

    percussion, 18th century, Europe Tambourine
  • Triangle

    percussion, 18th century, Egypt About the Triangle
  • Acis And Galatea - George Handel

    George Handel, "Acis and Galatea", 1718, opera
  • The Four Seasons - Antonio Vivaldi

    Antonio Vivaldi, "The Four Seasons", 1723, Baroque-instrumental
  • Franz Joseph Haydn - Classical Period

    Born - March 31, 1732 - Died May 31, 1809
    Birthplace - Rohrau, Austria
    Hadyn was often referred to as the "Father of the Symphony" and "The Father of the String Quartet". When he was younger, Haydn was invited to serve as a chorister at the Austrian capital's most important church. Some of his notable works include, "The Creation" and "Trumpet Concerto". Hayden's influences were, Handel and Porpora.
  • Christmas Oratorio - Johann Bach

    Johann Sebatian Bach, "Christmas Oratorio", 1734, oratorio
  • Symphony - Classical Period

    Symphonies began to be composed around the Classical era, about 1740-1820. "Symphony, a lengthy form of musical composition for orchestra, normally consisting of several large sections, or movements, at least one of which usually employs sonata form ". Key people of this style include, Joseph Haydn and Franz Schubert.
  • Concerto - Classical Period

    (1750-1830) A concerto is a piece written for a single type of instrument. The solo instrument will be joined by an orchestra. Mozart crated a new piano concerto. Key people were, Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven.
    The Classical Novice
  • Transition from Classical to Romantic Music

    While the classical period had an emphasis towards elegance and balance in its music, the romantic period focused on the use of song like melodies and newer harmonic elements designed to feel much more emotive to the listener or player. Romantic Symphonies also had more instruments.
    Key Differences
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Classical Period

    Born January 27, 1756 - Died- December 5, 1791
    Birthplace - Salzburg, Austria
    Mozart composed from the age of 5 and he performed In front of European royalty when he was 17. He was also considered to be a child prodigy. Some of his notable works include, "Symphony No. 40", "Requiem"(also known as Lacrimosa), and "Sonata No. 16". Mozart was influenced by Bach and Handel.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven - Classical Period

    Born December 17, 1770 - Died March 26, 1827
    Birthplace - Bonn, Germany
    Beethoven was a crucial composer for the transition between the Classical and Romantic Period. By age 28, he started to lose his hearing. Some of his notable works include "Fur Elise", "Symphony No. 5", and "Moonlight Sonata". He was influenced by Mozart, Bach, Hayden, and Handel.
  • Gioachino Rossini - Classical Period

    Born - February 29, 1792, Died - November 13, 1868
    Birthplace - Pesaro, Italy
    At age 14 he entered Bologna’s Philharmonic School (now the G.B. Martini State Conservatory of Music). When his voice broke and he was unable to continue singing, Rossini became an accompanist and then a conductor. Some of Rossini's notable works include, "Armida", "Aureliano in Palmira", and "Cinderella". His influences are Mozart and Haydn.
  • Requiem - Wolfgang Mozart

    Wolfgang Mozart, "Requiem", 1791, classical-operatic
  • Franz Schubert - Romantic Period

    Born - January 31, 1797, Died - November 19, 1828
    Birthplace - Himmelpfortgrund, Austria
    Austria is considered a bridge between the Classical and Romantic Period. Schubert received his music education foundation from his father and his eldest brother.
    Notable works include, “Ave Maria!”, “Das Wandern”, and “Der Hirt auf dem Felsen”.
  • The Creation - Joseph Hayn

    Joseph Haydn, "The Creation", 1797, oratoria
  • Moonlight Sonata - Ludwig Beethoven

    Ludwig Beethoven, "Moonlight Sonata", 1801, Western Classical Music
  • Frederic Chopin - Romantic Period

    Born March 1, 1810 - Died October 17, 1849
    Birthplace - Żelazowa Wola, Poland
    Chopin was born into a family that had artistic learnings. He was considered a child prodigy as he was a pianist and composer. Chopin’s notable works consist of “Berceuse” “Chopin Preludes, Op. 28” “Heroic Polonaise” and “Polonaise in G Minor”. He was influenced by Vivaldi, Pachelbel, and Kerll.
  • Nocturne - Romantic Period

    The first nocturne was first published in 1814 by John Field. Nocturne in music, is a composition that was created in the 19th century as a character piece for piano. Prominent composers of this style are Chopin and Debussy.
  • Cornet

    brass, 1820s, France The Met
  • Ave Maria - Franz Schubert

    Franz Schubert, "Ave Maria", 1825, Compositional
  • Nocturne op 9 No.2 - Frederic Chopin

    Frederic Chopin, "Nocturne op 9 No.2", 1831, Nocturne
  • Johannes Brahms - Romantic Period

    Born May 7, 1833 - Died April 3, 1897
    Birthplace - Hamburg, Germany
    Brahms was a child genius who started performing at age 8. By age 11, he was improvising sonatas. Some of Brahms' notable works include, "Wiegenlied op. 49 n. 4", "Hungarian Dance No. 5", and "Symphony No 4 in E minor, Op 98". Brahms' was influenced by Beethoven, Mozart, and Schumann.
  • Tuba

    brass, 1835, Germany The origins of the Tuba
  • Saxophone

    woodwind, 1846, Belgium History of the Saxophone
  • Claude Debussy - 20th Century

    Born - August 22, 1862, Died - March 25, 1918
    Birthplace - Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France
    Debussy is considered a 20th century composer. By the time he was nine, Debussy showed talent in the Piano. He developed a highly original system of harmony and musical structure. Some of his notable works include, “Clair de lune”, “Nocturnes”, and “Pelleas et Melisande”. His influences include Fredric Chopin. Britannica
  • Richard Strauss - 20th Century

    Born - June 11, 1864, Died - September 8, 1949,
    Birthplace - Munich, Germany
    Strauss's father was considered "Germany's leading virtuoso of the instrument". When he left school in 1882, he had already composed more than 140 works. Some of his notable works are, “A Hero’s Life” “An Alpine Symphony, Op. 64”, “Arabella”.
  • Amy Marcy Beach - Romantic Period

    Born - September 5, 1867, Died - December 27, 1944
    Birthplace - Henniker, N.H., U.S.
    Beach wrote "Gaelic Symphony (1894)", which was the first symphony by an American woman composer. When she was four, Beach began making simple melodies on the keyboard. Some of her notable works include, "Gaelic Symphony" and "Piano Concerto in C-sharp minor".
  • Igor Stravinsky - 20th Century

    Born - June 5, 1882, Died - April 6, 1971
    Birthplace - Lomonosov, Russia
    Stravinsky is a composer who's work is considered to have had a revolutionary impact on musical though and sensibility, before and after WWl. He has also been awarded three Grammys. Some of his notable works include, “Oedipus Rex”, “Persephone”, and “Requiem Canticle”.
  • Jazz - 20th Century

    Jazz, musical form, often improvisational, developed by African Americans and influenced by both European harmonic structure and African rhythms. Key people were, Astrud Gilberto and Roberta Flack.
  • Clair de lune - Claude Debussy

    Claude Debussy, "Clair de lune", 1908, musical impressionism
  • John Cage - 20th Century

    Born - September 5, 1912, Died - August 12, 1992,
    Birthplace - New York, New York
    Cage's "unorthodox" ideas influenced the mid-20th-century music. He experimented with tape recorders, record players, and radios in his effort to step outside the bounds of conventional Western music. Notable works include, “1O1”, “4′33"″, and "Concert for Piano and Orchestra”.
  • Electric Guitar

    string, 1931, United States Britannica
  • Persephone - Igor Stravinsky

    Igor Stravinsky, "Persephone", 1934, melodrame
  • Electronic Music - 20th Century

    Electronic music, any music involving electronic processing, such as recording and editing on tape, and whose reproduction involves the use of loudspeakers.1948 was the year electronic music's foundation was made to be able compose it in the future.
  • Experimental Music- 20th Century

    The compositional structure abandons traditional things like rhythm, melody, timbre, or tempo in favor of free improvisation or total deconstruction. Experimental Music is a style that dates back to the mid-20th century. John Cage is a composer who used this style.
    Experimental Music Guide
  • Hungarian Dance No.5 - Johannes Brahms

    Johannes Brahms, "Hungarian Dance No.5", 1950, Hungarian Folk Music
  • 4'33" - John Cage

    John Cage, "4'33"", 1952, Modernist