Johann Sebastian Bach. J.S. Bach worked at different times for nobility and the church. He never moved far from his birthplace, Leipzig, Germany. He composed about 1000 pieces, mainly religious oratorios and pieces for organ or harpsichord. Bach was a master of the fugue.
Many hymns of today began as chorales from some of Bach’s larger works.
The beat or pulse of Baroque music is usually very steady.
The tempo of Baroque music can be any speed. The tempo stays the same through the entire composition.Beat: steady pulseTempo: the speed of the beat
These pieces were composed as music to listen to. Where do you think these pieces were originally performed, and who was there to listen?
Would this be good music to listen to if you are working on homework? In an office? Why or why not?
Dynamics: the loudness or softness (quietness) of music.During the Baroque period, how loud or soft the music is depends on the number of musicians playing. Instruments are fairly crude and not easy to control. 1 bassoon = softer more bassoons = louder
Composers began to write dynamic markings in their music during the 17th century (1600s). It wasn’t long before piano and forte are written in new Italian music. Similar markings are added to music by composers in other European countries.Why do you think little or no orchestra music was composed in the New World at this time?
When 3 bassoons play, then 2, then 1, the change from loud to softer to soft is more like steps than a gradual change. This effect is called terraced dynamics.
In your notes, write three details of Handel’s clothing that make you think he lives during the Baroque Period.
performance in London. During the section called
“Hallelujah Chorus,” King George II was so
enthusiastic he stood! No one can remain seated
when the king is standing, so everyone in the audience
stood, too. Since that day, everyone stands for the “Hallelujah Chorus.”
Why do you suppose people have continued to enjoy Handel’s (and Bach’s) music for more than 250 years?
In your notes, name the instruments of the concertino.
Why would conducting an orchestra at an orphanage for girls be unusual around 1700?
Describe the mood or feeling you get from
this movement. Predict the moods of
“Spring,” “Summer,” and “Winter.”What
tempo or dynamics might to help convey the different mood or feeling?
5. Performers were expected to sing or play the melody of a piece exactly as the composer wrote it. True or False, and why?
6. How is harmony created in a fugue?
7. If you wanted a group of instruments to play loud, then a little softer, then soft, why would the dynamics be terraced and not gradual?
8. How is music of the Baroque like the art, architecture, and fashions of the time?