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The Baroque Period 1600-1750 Time of Turbulent Change Conquest of new worlds Rise of the middle class (against monarchy) Characterized by “appalling poverty and wasteful luxury, magnificent idealism and savage oppression.” Art of the time period lends credence to the term “Baroque” – which means exaggerated, abnormal or bizarre. Sant’Andrea The Creation of Adam, Michelangelo Absolute Monarchy All arts and culture served the ruler Had own orchestras, opera troupes, chapel choirs Enjoyed stories about nobility, and composers saw that they contained elements to flatter their patrons. Other happenings Middle class created a culture of their own Music making in the home, and art of the era focused on life of the common man and a celebration of life Age of discovery—from astronomy, physics, mathematics to medicine Intensely devout period – many wars: Catholics vs. Protestants Rise of Homophony Known as “monody” – a solo song with instrumental accompaniment. First cultivated by the Florentine Camerata New Music – music should heighten the emotional power of the text; named it “the expressive style.” Other musical developments Figured bass – a short-cut for musicians consisting of numbers written below the staff to tell the “performer” what to play. Called “basso continuo” and consisted of two players: often one keyboard player and one instrumentalist. Establishment of major-minor tonality and the rise of the importance of a central tone, or tonic. New tuning system EQUAL TEMPERAMENT. Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier Musical Style Very rhythmic – often driving and forceful More use of dissonance for effect (might use it for a particular word, i.e., death). Doctrine of the Affections – Music should suggest a particular mood. Although used in the Renaissance in the form of word painting, it was often the case that a entire piece or a movement was based on a single affection in the Baroque era. Rise of the Virtuoso As instruments improved, so did the playing. Composers wrote more demanding literature. Vocal followed Castrato Improvisation Music added embellishments or decorations to the written score. Performance practice of the time.