Baroque Period 1600 - 1750


Johann Sebastian Bach



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The Baroque style period was from 1600 - 1750. It was an important ttime in the world. The thirteen American colonies were formed. Galileo, Kepler and Newton were discovering new ways to exlain the universe. Fancy decortion and ornimentation were the rule for fashion, art, music andf architecture. Upper-class men and women wore wigs and coats with lace.


Baroque Music- Baroque composers wrote complex polyphonc music by layering compliated melodies with many trills and fast moving notes on top of each other. It was also common to layer these melodies over chords on the bass. The most famous composer was Johann Sebastian Bach. Others included Antonio Vivaldi, Johann Pachelbel, and George Fredric Handel. Composers also began to write dynamics and tempo markings into their music. The use of Improvisation 0(then art of making uo the music as you play) became very popular - even in the church. Composers also used their music to express emotions.

Patronage System - In the Baroque period composers were employed by the church and the wealthy, ruling class. This system of employment was called the patronage system. Usually one wealthy person (or patron ) would pay the composer for each work and decided what kind of piece the composer would write. Unfortunately this limited the composers freedom of creativity.
Vocal Music - Opera made its debut during the Baroque period. An opera uses music, acting, scenery, costumes and props. In opera the text or libretto is sung rather than spoken. Some operas are serious and some are funny. Claudio Monteverdi wrote the first opera, Orfeo. The plot of Orfeo is bassed on a Greek Myth about Orpheus who tries to save his dead lover Eurydice from Hates, the underworld.
Instrumental music - In the Barque period instrumental music was equally as important as vocal music. Viols were replaced by violins violas, and cellos. There was a big rise in music written for flute, oboe, bassoon, trombone, valveless trumpt, french horns, harpsichord and organ. Much of the music written for instruments had several contrasting sections or movements. an example of this is the concerto grosso. The concerto grosso was written for a small group of solo instruments and orchestra and consisted of three movements (fast - slow - fast)