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Chapter 12: Classical Style PowerPoint Presentation
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Chapter 12: Classical Style

Chapter 12: Classical Style

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Chapter 12: Classical Style

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  1. Chapter 12: Classical Style

  2. The Classical Era (1750-1820) • Musical proportion, balance, and formal correctness • Emulation of the art of ancient Greece and Rome • Classical architecture: geometric shapes, balance, symmetrical design, lack of clutter

  3. The Enlightenment • Also called the Age of Reason • Pursuit of truth and discovery of natural laws • Encyclopedia Britannica and the French Encyclopédie • Scientific advances • Growth of the middle class • Age of Revolution • American Revolution – Declaration of Independence, 1776 • French Revolution – storming of the Bastille, 1789

  4. The Democratization of Classical Music:Public Concerts • Performances gradually moved from the palace to the concert hall • Supported by the middle class • Concert spirituel: Successful Parisian concert series • First noncourt orchestra played on a regular schedule of performances • Two-tiered price scheme for a subscription series made performance accessible to several strata of society • Commercialization of a shared musical experience • London – Vauxhall Gardens • Vienna – Burgtheater (City Theatre) opened in 1759

  5. The Rise of Popular Opera • Comic Opera: Expressed middle class values; satire of pompous and incompetent aristocrats • Also called Opera buffa • Use of everyday characters and situations • Use of da capo arias (ABA) • Sight gags, bawdy humor, and social satire • Reflected social change as well as inspired it

  6. The Advent of the Piano • Invented in Italy around 1700 • Replaced the harpsichord • Could play more than one dynamic level • Originally named the pianoforte • Amateur music making in the home • Many amateur pianists were women • Simpler, more homophonic style of keyboard music

  7. Elements of Classical Style • Melody: Tuneful, catchy, singable melodies • Simple and short with balanced phrases • Antecedent and Consequent phrases • Example from Mozart’s Piano Concert in C major (1785)

  8. Elements of Classical Style • Harmony: Harmonic rhythm much more fluid and flexible than in the Baroque music • Alberti Bass: Spreads out pitches of a chord to provide a steady steam of sound • Rhythm: More flexible rhythm • Greater variety within a single movement

  9. Elements of Classical Style • Texture: Mostly homophonic • Light and transparent • Thin bass and middle range • Counterpoint used sparingly and mainly for contrast

  10. The Dynamic Mood of Classical Music • Use of rapid changes in mood, texture, color, and dynamics adds a new sense of urgency and drama • Use of crescendo and diminuendo • An Example of Classical Style: Mozart, Le nozzi di Figaro (1786)