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Music of the Baroque Period (1600-1750) Baroque Historical Highlights Age of Absolutism; Kings and Queens are all- powerful Known for extreme decadence.

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Presentation on theme: "Music of the Baroque Period (1600-1750) Baroque Historical Highlights Age of Absolutism; Kings and Queens are all- powerful Known for extreme decadence."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Music of the Baroque Period ( )

3 Baroque Historical Highlights Age of Absolutism; Kings and Queens are all- powerful Known for extreme decadence and extravagance of aristocracy (e.g. Louis XIV and his palace of Versailles) Church Splits in Two; Europe split into Catholic countries (Italy, France, Spain) and Protestant countries (England, Germany, Netherlands, Sweden)

4 The Palace at Versailles

5 The Royal Chapel, Hall of Mirrors & Royal Coach

6 The King’s Bedroom, Marie Antoinette’s Room, The Opera House

7 “Baroque” Defined Baroque means exaggerated or over- ornamented; these adjectives relate to music and visual arts

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12 Baroque Artistic Highlights Emphasis on DRAMA (extreme and heightened emotion) in music and visual arts –Caravaggio’s paintings show this emphasis on DRAMA

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15 Baroque Musical Highlights Birth of OPERA - theatrical presentations with music and elaborate stage spectacle New focus on instrumental music and instrumental accompaniment to voices New emphasis on chords and use of BASSO CONTINUO

16 Baroque Music Style Characteristics Timbre new emphasis on instrumental music & instrumental accompaniment to voices Rhythm beat is emphasized; lots of forward motion Melody elaborate, ornamented, continuously expanding, long and winding Form one main theme repeated over and over Dynamics sudden changes from loud to soft and soft to loud called terraced dynamics Texture more rapid changes in texture (homophony, imitative polyphony) throughout a single movement or piece of music Harmony new emphasis on chords; orchestra mainly consists of strings and basso continuo (bass melody instrument like cello or bassoon + chord generating instrument harpsichord, organ, or lute) Mood the same mood throughout movement; this heightened emotional state called affect (vocal music is exception; vocal music has many changes of mood, but closely follows text)

17 Baroque Music Genres Vocal Music Genres –Opera –Oratorio –Cantata Instrumental Music Genres –Chamber Music –Concerto Grosso

18 Opera Sung theatrical work Staged with costumes and sets Example: HENRY PURCELL "Dido's Lament" from Dido and Aeneas CD#1/69-70

19 Henry Purcell

20 HENRY PURCELL "Dido's Lament" from Dido and Aeneas Aria vs. Recitative

21 Aria Song for solo voice with orchestral accompaniment –usually expressing an emotional state through its outpouring of melody –found in operas, oratorios, and cantatas

22 Recitative Vocal line in opera, oratorio, or cantata that imitates the rhythms and pitch fluctuations of speech, often serving to lead into an aria

23 HENRY PURCELL "Dido's Lament" from Dido and Aeneas Listen for Basso continuo in Recitative

24 Basso Continuo (‘continuous bass’) Baroque accompaniment made up of a bass part usually played by two instruments: –A keyboard (or other chord-making instrument, such as a lute or organ), and –A low melodic instrument (such as cello or a basson)

25 HENRY PURCELL "Dido's Lament" from Dido and Aeneas Aria built on Ground bass

26 Ground Bass (basso ostinato) A repeating bass line –This one has dark-sounding harmony and is descending in pitch Variation form in which a musical idea in the bass is repeated over and over while the melodies above it constantly change –Common in Baroque music

27 Dido’s Lament from Dido and Aeneas Dido sings: Thy hand, Belinda, darkness shades me, On thy bosom let me rest; More I would be death invades me; Death is now a welcome guest.

28 Dido’s Lament from Dido and Aeneas When I am laid, am laid in earth, may my wrongs create No trouble in thy breast. Remember me! But ah! Forget my fate.

29 Oratorio Like opera, but unstaged Uses a religious story Example: GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL’s Messiah – "Hallelujah" CD#2/11-16 – "Ev'ry Valley Shall Be Exalted" CD#2/10

30 George Frideric Handel

31 G.F. Handel’s “Ev’ry Valley Shall Be Exalted” from The Messiah Listen for – Terraced dynamics –Emphasis of beat –Ornamented melody –Continuous affect – Word painting

32 Terraced Dynamics Abrupt alternation between loud and soft dynamic levels Characteristic of Baroque Music – Not found in Medieval or Renaissance Music

33 Affections /Affect p.95 of text The expression of one basic mood in Baroque music Specific rhythms or melodic patterns were associated with specific moods Not characteristic of OPERA, but found in oratorio and cantatas

34 G.F. Handel’s “Ev’ry Valley Shall Be Exalted” from The Messiah Ev’ry valley. (text painting highlighted in blue and purple) Ev’ry valley shall be exalted, and ev’ry mountain and hill made low, The crooked straight, and the rough places plain.

35 GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL’s "Hallelujah” Chorus from Messiah Listen for –Changes in texture Hymn-like Homophony Imitative Polyphony Pedal Point –Emphasis of beat

36 Cantata Like opera, but unstaged, with religious text Performed ONLY in churches Example: J.S. BACH Cantata No. 140: Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme (Sleepers Awake) Mvt. 4 [Tenor Chorale] CD#1/71-73 & Mvt. 7 [Chorale] CD#1/74-75

37 Johann Sebastian Bach

38 J.S. BACH Cantata No. 140: Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme (Sleepers Awake) Mvt. 4 [Tenor Chorale] – Listen for Ornamented melody Continuous affect Mvt. 7 [Chorale] – Listen for Hymn-like homophony Complete and incomplete cadences

39 Chamber Music Uses a small group of musicians, with one player to a part Meant for smaller, more intimate performance venues Includes music for solo instruments –J.S. Bach’s Organ Fugue in G Minor “The Little”

40 J.S. BACH Organ Fugue in G Minor (The "Little") Fugue form (features imitative polyphony) – Subject (Main Theme) stated in different “voices” during Exposition – Exposition followed by alternating Episodes (non- imitative) and Subject Entries (imitative) – Countersubject - countermelody that accompanies Subject in Exposition & Subject Entries Picardy Third

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42 Concerto Grosso Ritornello form - Ritornello (a homphonic or polyphonic block of music) alternating with Episodes (contrasting melodic, softer dynamics, virtuosic scales and arpeggios) Tutti vs. Soli groups

43 Antonio Vivaldi

44 Examples of Baroque Concerto Grosso J.S. Bach – Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D Major – Movement 1 Antonio Vivaldi –Concerto for Violin and String Orchestra, Op. 8, No. 1, La Primavera [Spring] –from The Four Seasons –Movement 1


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