The Classical (1730 - 1810s)

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  • Musical Traits

    Musical Traits of the Classical period included singable melodies, symmetrical phrasing, and easier harmonies. It also included slower harmonic rhythms and easy accompaniments figures as opposed tot the difficult figured bass of the Baroque
  • Empfindsamkeit

    The style of Empfindsamkeit desired to be, above all, simple and expressive of “natural” feeling. Primarily composed by CE Bach and strove to be "natural" sounding.
  • Musical Changes

    Musical changes of classical style included expression through restraint, order, reason, symmetry, and serenity. Melodic ideas or themes also are used as compositional building blocks, and melodies consist of short melodic or rhythmic fragments, aka motifs.
  • Absolute Music

    Absolute music is music with no programmatic or literary connections – just music, no story
  • Chamber Music

    Instrumental music played by a small ensemble, with one player to a part, the most important form being the string quartet which developed in the 18th century
  • Opera Buffa

    Opera's with more comedic elements began appearing in Italy. This eventually became more popular than opera seria.
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica

    The first edition of Encyclopaedia Britannica, the largest encyclopedia in the world, is written.
  • La Scala Inaugerated

    La Scala opera house in Milan is inaugerated. Most of Italy's greatest operatic artists, and many of the finest singers from around the world, have appeared at La Scala. The theatre is regarded as one of the leading opera and ballet theatres in the world and is home to the La Scala Theatre Chorus, La Scala Theatre Ballet and La Scala Theatre Orchestra
  • The Piano

    The first patented version of a piano was in London in 1777.
  • American Revolution Ends

    General Cornwallis surrenders the British Army after the successful American siege of Yorktown.
  • The Marriage of Figaro

    Mozarts "The Marriage of Fiagro premieres. This opera became one of Mozart's most successful works. The overture is especially famous and is often played as a concert piece.
  • The Industrial Revolution Begins

    The transitions to new manufacturing processes in Europe and the United States, in the period from about 1760 to sometime between 1820 and 1840.
  • Paris Conservatory of Music Funded

    The Paris Conservatory of music is founded. This institute is still offering instruction in music, dance, and drama, drawing on the traditions of the "French School."
  • Trumpet

    A brass instrument commonly used in classical and jazz ensembles. The trumpet still had no valves in the 1780s and 90s: Haydn’s colleague, court trumpeter Anton Weidinger, developed an experimental trumpet with keys
  • Napolean crowned

    Napoleon Bonaparte is crowned emperor of France.
  • Prague Conservatoire Begins First School Year

    The Prague Conservatory ranks among the oldest music schools of this type in Europe. It was founded to provide education to orchestral musicians.
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    Bach (1685 - 1750)

    Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer and musician of the Baroque and Classical period. He is widely known for his 'Bradenburg Concertos' and for vocal music such as 'St Matthew Passion'. He is regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time
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    Wesley (1703 - 1791)

    John Wesley was an English cleric, theologian and evangelist who was a leader of a revival movement within the Church of England known as Methodism. The societies he founded became the dominant form of the independent Methodist movement that continues to this day
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    Haydn (1732 - 1809)

    Franz Joseph Haydn was an Austrian composer of the Classical period. He was instrumental in the development of chamber music such as the piano trio. His contributions to musical form have earned him the epithets "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet"
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    Clementi (1752 - 1832)

    Muzio Clementi was an Italian-born English composer, pianist, pedagogue, conductor, music publisher, editor, and piano manufacturer
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    French Indian War

    The French Indian war pitted the colonies of British America against those of New France, each side supported by military units from the parent country and by American Indian allies.
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    VIotti (1755 - 1824)

    Giovanni Viotti was an Italian violinist whose virtuosity was famed and whose work as a composer featured a prominent violin and an appealing lyrical tunefulness. He was also a director of French and Italian opera companies in Paris and London. He personally knew Joseph Haydn and Ludwig van Beethoven
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    Mozart (1756 - 1791)

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a prolific and influential composer fo the Classical period. He composed more than 600 works, many of which are acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, operatic, and choral music. He is considered among the greatest classical composers of all time, and his influence is profound on subsequent Western art music
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    Beethoven (1770 - 1827)

    Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist; his music is amongst the most performed of the classical repertoire and he is one of the most admired composers in the history of Western music. His works span the transition between the classical and romantic eras in classical music.
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    Paganini (1782 - 1840)

    Niccolo Paganini was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was the most celebrated violin virtuoso of his time and left his mark as one of the pillars of the modern violin technique. His 24 Caprices for Solo Violin Op. 1 are among the best known of his compositions and have served as an inspiration for many prominent composers
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    von Weber (1786 - 1826)

    Carl Ernst von Weber was a German composer, conductor, pianist, guitarist[3][4] and critic, and was one of the first significant composers of the Romantic school.
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    Czerny (1791 - 1857)

    Calr Czerny was an Austrian composer, teacher, and pianist of Czech origin whose vast musical production amounted to over a thousand works. His books of studies for the piano are still widely used in piano teaching. He was one of Beethoven's numerous pupils.
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    Meyerbeer (1791 - 1864)

    Giacomo Meyerbeer was a German opera composer of Jewish birth who has been described as perhaps the most successful stage composer of the nineteenth century. With his 1831 opera Robert le diable and its successors, he gave the genre of grand opera 'decisive character'. Meyerbeer's grand opera style was achieved by his merging of German orchestra style with Italian vocal tradition
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    Rossini (1792 - 1868)

    Gioachino Antonio Rossini was an Italian composer who gained fame for his 39 operas, although he also wrote many songs, some chamber music and piano pieces, and some sacred music. He set new standards for both comic and serious opera before retiring from large-scale composition while still in his thirties, at the height of his popularity
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    Donizetti (1797 - 1848)

    Domenico Maria Donizetti was an Italian composer, best known for his almost 70 operas. Along with Gioachino Rossini and Vincenzo Bellini, Donizetti was a leading composer of the bel canto opera style during the first half of the nineteenth century
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    Bellini (1801 - 1835)

    Vincenzo Bellini was an Italian opera composer, who was known for his long-flowing melodic lines for which he was named "the Swan of Catania"
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    Berlioz (1803 - 1869)

    Louis-Hector Berlioz was a French Romantic composer. His output includes orchestral works such as the Symphonie fantastique and Harold in Italy, choral pieces including the Requiem and L'Enfance du Christ, his three operas Benvenuto Cellini, Les Troyens and Béatrice et Bénédict, and works of hybrid genres such as the "dramatic symphony" Roméo et Juliette and the "dramatic legend" La Damnation de Faust
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    Bizet (1838 - 1875)

    Georges Bizet, registered at birth as Alexandre César Léopold Bizet, was a French composer of the Romantic era. Best known for his operas in a career cut short by his early death, Bizet achieved few successes before his final work, Carmen, which has become one of the most popular and frequently performed works in the entire opera repertoire