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Appeared first in Al-Wafaa News issue #14 Spring, 1993 Reprinted again in Issue # 30 Fall, 1997 The w "Music" comes from the Greek word "Mousiki" which means thescience of the composing of melodies. 'i musiqa was the name given bythe Arabs to the Greek theory of music to distinguish it from 'ilm al-ghin was the Arabian practical theory. The source of the Arabian theory of music was an older Semitic one w an impact on, if it had not been the foundation of Greek theory. "Of course, the Arabs and Persians pos theory of music long before they became influenced by the translations made from the Greek at the en 8th and beginning of the 9th century."
By the Middle of 9th Century, the effects of the musical theories ofancient Greeks on music began to be Among these treatises wereAristotle's Problems and De anima, the comentaries of Themistius and AlexanderAphrodisiensis on the latter, two works by Aristoxenus, the two books on musicof Euclid, a tr Nicomachus and the Harmonics of Ptolemy, all of whichhad been translated into Arabic as we know from Farabi.
The science of music now became one of the courses of the quadrivium, and was studied by most stud period. The first to deal with the newly-found treasures of the "Ancients" was Al-Kindi (d.874). Seven t music theory appear under his name. Four of them survived: three of them are at Berlin and the fourth British Musuem.After Al-Kindi, we have a gap of about a century in documentation.Following Al-Kindi w great theorist Al-Farabi. His book "AlkitabAlkabeer" included immense and detailed information on mus musicalinstruments.
"Al-Farabi was a good mathematician and physist, and that enabled him to do justice to what the Arabs speculative theory, even to not repeating the errors of the Greeks. Yet he was something more. He wa practical musician and could appreciate the art as well as the science, which was more than Themistius as Al-Farabi himself mentions. As a performer with a reputation, he could bring the practical art to bea discussions.So whilst he was more thorough than the Greeks in handling the physical bases of sound, h also make valuable contributions to physiological accoustics, i.e. the sensations of tone, a question whi Greeks left practically untouched."
Al-Farabi (d.950) describes a musical instrument called Al-Tunboor Al-Baghdadi which was used in his instrument's frets (dasateen, aPersian word) gave a "pre-Islamic scale." It was a quarter-tone scale wh developed by dividing a string into forty equal parts. Although Al-Farabi's instrument did not have the f scale, yet the theoretical division mentioned previously would produce a scale which expressed in cyclic would be: Fret Nut 2nd 4th 6th 8th 10thCent 0 89 182 281 386 498. Al-Farabi also describes the scale Tunboor Al-Khurasani which was prompted by al-Kindi's speculations. "It became the parent of the late the Systematist School."Henry George Farmer in his book; "Historical Facts for the Arabian Musical Infl notes that "the influence due to the Arabian culture contact in respect to musical instruments was far w has been generally acknowledged. The origin of the words lute, rebec, guitar and naker from the Arabic rabab, qithara and naqqara, is a well-known fact [seethe Oxford Dictionary]"
Other words such as adufe, albogon, anafil, exabeba, atabal, and atambalare originally Arabic as well. from Al-duff, Al-booq, Al-nafeer, Al-shabbabe, Al-Tabl and Al-Tinbal. The adufe is a square tambourine kind of tambourine mentioned in Farmer's book is a round type called panderete. "The word equates w Arabic bendair." The Bendair resembles the Taar, but without jingling metal discs. Instead, there are "snares"stretched across the inside of the head, which give the instrument a tone like the Western side Taar is another type of tambourine with jingling plates in the rim. The albogon, resembles the Arabian was in one case a horn, and in another a sort of saxophone improved by the Andalusian Sultan Al-Haki Shalahi (13th century) informs us that the Christians borrowed the instrument from the Arabs.The ana long straight trumpet. Farmer mentions that "it has been generally admitted by our musical antiquaries straight cylindrical bore trumpet came from the Arabs. Could this have been the particular feature of th anafil? We read in "Alf Laila wa Laila"(Thousand and One Nights) that a horn-player "blew" (nafakha) th but that a trumpter "blasted" (SaHe, lit. "Split") the nafir. It is possible that these terms convey the dis between the tones of the conical bore hornand the cylindrical bore trumpet." "The origin of the words a atambal from the Arabic al-Tabl and the Persian al-Tinbal, is I believe, clear enough philologically", say Farmer;"It would follow in consequence that the former is the older word, and that the latter was adop time of the Crusades." Al-Tabl is a big drum.Al-Tumboor seems to be identical to the Tabl. It belongs to military and processional music. It was adopted by Western armies for their military bandsat the time o
previous instruments, there are many others whose Arabic name or origin have not been well noticed. "Practically, the entiredrum family came into Western Europe through the Arabian contact, or was popu this medium." For example, the Kittledrum (naker, timbale)which was called "le tambour de Perses." Th (originally naqqara) or the kittledrum is a timpanic instrument with a dual hemispheric body played wit drumsticks. It is one of the essential instruments used with Maqam and goes as far back as the Abbasi to the 12th century) when Baghdad became the capital of the Muslim World.Dirbakka, dunbug and Tab various names of one kind of a drum. Tabla is an Arabic word while dunbug, a term used in Iraq and ot This section covers information, history and development of music like Indian music, Arabic music, classical music, countries, is Persian word. The word dirbakka (or dirbakki) is a Renaissance, Baroque, Medieval, Modern classical music,aromantic music, sufi qawwali etc in different eras such as slang used in the Laventine (Syria, Le Jordan and Palestine.)
The Tabla is about 15 inches long and being played either loose on either legs or while being suspende over the left shoulder and carried under the left arm. It is beaten with both hands and yields different s when beaten near the edge and near the middle. The Iraqi Tabla or dunbug which is only used in Iraq t about 3 inches in diameter and specifically used for country and gypsy style music.
The Kaithaar is an interesting instrument as to the origin of the flat- chested guitar in Europe. It has be that the Spanish word guitarra (with t) was derived from the Arabic qitara, rather than from the Greek (with th). It seems that the Arabic words qitara or qithara, were only used when dealing with the Greek Byzantine instrument, while kaithaar was givento the Arabic insrtument. Henry George Farmer says tha Al-ShalaHi saysthat the word Kaithaar is post-classical. He quotes a short definition of itby Abu Bakr Al (d. 1126), who merely says that it is a "stringedinstrument." More important, however, is a verse by Ib Rabbihi (d.940)in its praise."Among stringed instruments, is the Arabian qanoon, which became the Eu Kanon, Canon and Canale at the same time.
Al-qanoon is atrapezoidal instrument with a range of three octaves which is played byplucking with a p the tip and index fingers of each hand. The totalnumber of strings may vary between 64 and 82.
Four theories are available to us by Arab and European scholars on the origin of al-qanoon: One states qanoon is originally Greek, the otherindicates that it has originated in ancient Egypt, the third says it h originated from a rectangular musical instrument used in ancient Assyria which had parallel strings on sound box, and the fourth theory states that qanoon is originally Indian.There has been various theorie to the origin of the word qanoon as well. However, the oldest recorded usage of the word qanoon as achrodophone instrument was during the Abbasid era around the 10th century. Itwas mentioned in the One Thousand and one Nights.
Al-'ud is a half pear-shaped with stripes of inlaid wood, the 'ud has 10to 12 strings, is unfretted and is a small plectrum. However, a detailed chapter in a book titled "Studies in Oriental Musical Instruments" George Henry Farmer indicates that the Arabian and Persian lute was Fretted.Mr. Farmer in The Legacy (1931) wrote: "The Islamic legagacy to Western Europe in musical instruments was of the greatest imp
There were many distinctly novel Arabian types introduced. With these instruments came several mate benefits. European minstrels, prior to the Arabian contact, only had the cithara and harp among stringe instruments, and they only had their ears to guide them when tuning. The Arabs brought to Europethe pandores, and guitars, with the places of the notes fixed on the fingerboard by means of frets which we determined by measurement. This alone was a note worthy advance."The origin of al-'ud is a complex with. There are six theories on the origin of al-'ud: One says it is originally Sumerian, the second is Per third is Egyptian, the fourth is Arian, the fifth is Jewish and the sixth is Akkadian of ancient Iraq.The wo comes from the Arabic word for wood. Pictures of 'Ud-likeinstruments have been discovered in the ruin ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. Persians and Indians played it in ancient times. However, it was the A (during the Abbasid Era), who perfected the 'Ud, called it so and passed it on to the West.
Another stringed instrument is al-SanToor. The word al-SanToor belongs to the family of Semetic langu Arabic, Hebrew, Aramaic and Amharic. In the Tourah or the Old Testament, the word "p'samterion" wa translated into Greek as "psalterim" and to Latin, it became "psalterium". In the Arabic translation of T word became "SanTeer". Al-SanToor belongs to the family of chrodophones and consists of 72 (to 100) is trapezoidaland played by two sticks. Its origin is said to be from ancient Babylonia.Al-jawza is nowad common in Iraq. It is one of the main instruments used with the Maqaam. Al-jawza is called so because of Jawz Al-Hind or the Indian Coconut. It has four strings and a round soundbox.Arab musicologists are trace their own folk forms back to the Bedouin of ancient times, whose caravan song-the huda- cheere desert voyages
The most two famous instruments used in the Bedouin music are the naay and rababeh or rebec.Rabab single string instrument with a square soundbox played witha single string bow. The rababeh was brou Spain by the Arabs and spread from Spain to Europe under the name rebec. It is usually referred to Al(10th century) as the first to have mentioned the rababeh. However,Ali of Isphahan mentioned that rab used at the court of Baghdad two centuries and a half before that. "This instrument was counted as on
worthyas that of the family of drums. The medieval xelami is actually the Arabian Zulami. An instrumen at Baghdad at the beginning of the ninth century.The exabeba was a small flute resembles the Arabian or Al-naay.Al-naay is a Persian term. The Arabic words for the same instrument may beQaSaba, Shabb minjara. Al-naay is a vertical flute and one of the oldest instruments employed in Arabic music. It is sim open tube madeof sugar cane whereby the instrumentalist blows diagonally accross the openend.The w goes as far back as the stone ages and was found all overthe Eastern hemisphere in ancient times.
Vocal Music References: Gharanas 1. Encyclopedia of Islam Volume III L-R, edited by M. Houtsma, A.J. Wensinck,E.Levi-Provencal, H.A.R. W. Heffening. Among the more popular and prolific gharanas of vocal music are the following. Most have been in exis 2. "A History of Arabian Music", by Henry George Farmer, published by Lowe &Brydone, Haverhill, Suff at least five to England, 1929.six generations. Their descendants include some of the most famous classical musicians performing and Oriental Music" by Egon Wellesz, published by OxfordUniversity Press. 3. "Ancient today. 4. "Studies in Oriental Musical Instruments" by H.G. Farmer, London, 1931. 5. Article on "Arabic Music" by Halim Dabh, The Arab World Magazine Jan.-Feb. 1966 (Arab Information The Gwalior Gharana: New York) 6. Article by Ustad Hassu Khan, Ustad Haddu Khan and Ustad Nathu Khan. A few famous Indian artistes Founded on "Music in the Middle East" by Afif A. Boulos, Aramco WorldMagazine, Jan.-Feb 1966 gharana include Pandit Vishnu Digambar Paluskar, Omkarnath Thakur, and Smt Veena Sahasrabuddhe
The Patiala Gharana: The founders of this tradition were Ustad Fateh Ali Khan and Ustad Ali Baksh. The descendants include Bade Ghulam Ali Khan, Munawar Ali Khan, Begum Parveen Sultana and Begum Ak among the more famous.
The Kirana Gharana: Ustad Abdul Karim Khan founded this gharana. Some of the more famous expone tradition include Sawai Gandharva, Smt Gangubai Hangal, Pandit Bhimsen Joshi and Prabha Atre.
The Jaipur-Atrauli Gharana: The founder of this gharana was Ustad Alladiya Khan who's descendants in Kesarbai Kerkar, Mogubai Kurdikar, Kishori Amonkar, Mallikarjun Mansur, Arati Ankalikar and Shruti Sa Katkar, the last two being relatively young musicians.
Other gharanas include The Agra Gharana (founded by Ustad Gagghe Khuda Bakhsh), The Rampur-Seh Gharana (founded by Ustad Inayat Khan), The Delhi Gharana (founded by sarangiya Ustad Mamman K Benaras Gharana (founded by sarangiya Pandit Gopal Mishra; his descendants Rajan Mishra and Sajan carrying on this tradition today), The Indore Gharana (founded by Ustad Amir Khan), The Jaipur-Mewa and The Talwandi Gharana, among others. Ragas
A raga is a rather metaphysical concept to define. At one level, it could be called an emotion, a state of set of feelings and thoughts that the singer conveys to you through his voice and skill in scaling notes.
At a more academic level, it is a musical composition that functions within a structure and follows certa with relation to the kind of notes used in it.
Ragas belong to certain classes or categories called thaats. A thaat is defined as that set of seven note which a raga can be made. There are ten thaats in all: Bilaval, Kalyan, Khamaj, Kafi, Bhairav, Bhairavi, Marva, Poorvi and Todi.
Historically there has always been some debate on thaats. Different scholars have given their own inter of thaats. The first scholar to present thaats was Lochan Pandit in the 14th century. However, it was in century that Pandit Vyankatmukhi first gave a comprehensive picture of the thaat as a concept in class He studied the ragas and mathematically arrived at 72 thaats. However, Hindustani classical music acc 32 of these. It was Pandit Bhatkhande who finally arrived at the list of ten given above.
Ragas must belong to one of the above thaats. However, this is not the only classification of a raga. Ra also classified on the basis of jati, or number of notes used in the raga.
When the basic structure of a raga is made up of seven notes, it is said to be Sampoorna (complete). W basic structure is of six notes, it belongs to the Shadav jati. When the basic structure is of five notes, it Audav jati. There can be a maximum of seven notes in a raga and a minimum of five notes. A deeper study of ragas that will help you better acquaint yourself with Indian classical music follows. Dhrupad
raag to taal, beats, a Dhrupad composition has text that is generally longer than Dadra or Thumri and in praise of the lord.
This section covers information, history and development of music like Indian music, Arabic music, classical music, Dhrupad enjoyed prime status in the imaginations of eras such as long time. Baroque, Medieval, of vari classical music, romantic music, sufi qawwali etc in differentsingers for aRenaissance,Sung in the courts Modern
Interestingly, the compositions were written in Brajbhasha, or Deshi bhasha, as it was sometimes calle Dhrupads of the 14th to 16th centuries became very popular especially during the reign of one of the T rulers -- Raja Dungarendra Singh Tomar.
many different vanis, styles of singing Dhrupad, emerged. These styles were practiced and perfected to extent that avid listeners learnt to trace the vanis back to the singers from whom they originated. It ha argued by some researchers that these vanis were the first signs of gharanas, styles of singing or perfo classical music, as we know them today. The Dhrupad vanis, however, merged into one another later o now difficult to trace a vani back to its origin.
The style enjoyed supremacy for nearly five centuries till the 18th century, when the Khyal started catc Now there are very few exponents of Dhrupad left. The Dagar family is the only set of musicians who s traditional Dhrupad. Khyal
It is difficult to say when the Khyal first made its tentative appearance in classical music. While it has b acknowledged that the basis of the Khyal was set sometime in the 13th and 14th centuries, it was only 18th century during the reign of Emperor Muhammad Shah that it finally came into its own.
The Khyal, according to 'Evolution of Indian Classical Music' by Neerja Bhatnagar (Publication Scheme, First Edition 1997), is said to have emerged as a reaction against the puritanical rigidity of Dhrupad wh retained its primacy as a classical genre till the second decade of the 18 century.
The main contributors to the Khyal are said to be two composers, Adaranga and Sadaranga, whose nam in the lyrics of many compositions. It has been argued that it was during this time that the Khyal finally overtake the Dhrupad in popularity and the level of domination to which it reached is still enjoyed by it today.
The ghazal as a form of music originated in Iran around the 10th century AD. It came to India with the invasion in the 13th Century and, ever since, has captured the hearts and minds of people who listen to beautiful, most poetic of genres.
The basis of the ghazal lies in Persian poetry. The language medium changed to Urdu sometime during century after Urdu became the accepted language of culture in the courts. One of the first, most prolif composers of the ghazal was Amir Khusrau who, it is said, at the height of his career wrote as much a ghazal a day. The ghazals of Amir Khusrau are still as treasured by connoisseurs or Urdu shayari, poet
Ghazals evolved from the Persian qasida which came to Iran from Arabia. The qasida often stretched t more couplets. The ghazal, through innovation, arrived at a dozen or so couplets. These couplets are c music that does not restrict itself to the rigid structures of ragas. One of the ghazal's greatest virtues, widely when it first gained popularity, was that it was the kind of music that could draw from a variety to arrive at a melody that made for perfectly aesthetic listening. Another beautiful aspect of the traditi is the fact that each of the shers, couplets, that comprise a ghazal can be quoted and used as individu ideas, thoughts or feelings.
There have been many poets who composed ghazals over the centuries. Some of the more famous of include Wali Mohammed Wali, Khwaja Mir Dard, Asadullah Khan Ghalib (known as Mirza Ghalib), Faiz A and the Mughal emperor Bahadur Shah Zafar. The ghazal is still as widely popular today and composers like Gulzar and singers like Jagjit Singh rule contemporary scene.
The Vedic Period Music, according to Hindu mythology, originated with the first sound ever to be heard in the universe, the Naadbrahma, or Om. This Naadbrahma pervades the entire universe and, being a manifestation of the divine power (or Brahma), is the purest sound to be heard. It is this purity that the musician attempts to achieve in his dedicated pursuit, or sadhana, of the music he is involved in. Where Indian cultural history is concerned, the farthest one can go back is, perhaps, the time of the Vedas, approximately 5000 to 4000 BC. These are arguably the earliest written documents to have emerged from the Indian subcontinent. The Vedic chants themselves, though, would date back even further subcontinent. The Vedic chants themselves, though, would date back even further because before writing, shruti, sound or speech in this case, and smriti, memory, were the only means of passing knowledge down the generations. The Vedic chants, set in three basic notes, formed a melody giving them a rhythm that probably made them easier to remember.Music, however, was obviously in existence and practice much before the Vedas were written. Research indicates that the Samveda had a rather complicated way of chanting that used more than just three notes as in the case of the other Vedas. Also, it has been found that a rather definite scale of svaras, notes, had been arrived at by scholars of the Vedic period. According to 'Evolution of Indian Classical Music' by Neerja Bhatnagar (Publication Scheme, Jaipur, First Edition 1997), "In the early Vedic period, the svaras were called Krushta, Prathama, Dvitiya, Tratiya, Chaturtha, Mandra and Atisyarya. Later, these were called Shadja, Rishabha, Gandhara, Madhyama, Panchama, Dhaivata and Nishada." Or, Sa, Re, Ga, Ma, Pa, Dha and Ni as they are sung. Her book also makes mention of the fact that these notes, if played today, would start
sapthak, lower octave. Also, the concept of shruti being intervals between the seven notes had been arrived at, as had the distinction between notes that are definitely musical and those that are not. As the centuries faded into one another and civilisations like that of the Indus valley rose and fell, the writings of the Vedas endured. It is difficult to say how many manuscripts actually survived and how many took the beating of time then. However, the people of that time followed the way of life as propounded in the four books and most cultures and societies of the time continued studies in the realms started by the Renaissance Era (1400 - 1600 C.E.) Vedic sages. The Renaissance era encompasses Western music history from 1400 to the begining The 1st to 13th Century of the 1600’s. This period in time marked the rebirth of humanism, and the revival of cultural achievements for their own sake in all forms of art, including music. The word The passing of itself is defined as way meant that studies by scholars and sages was "Renaissance" inthe Vedic age in no a "rebirth"or a "reconstruction". During this time, stopped. musicians produced works that displayed more artistic freedom and artists andAdvancements, however slow, were definitely made in the spheres of study started in the Vedic age, music being of particular concern in this ways individualism. This creativity allowed artists to abandon the strictercase. of the Medieval Era. Their art forms rediscovered the ancient Greek ideals. The great According to Renaissance were BC or in their own lifetimes of music evolved masters of theresearchers, by 600reveredso the grammatisation (rather than after quite a bit. The three sapthaks, octaves -- mandra sapthak, the lower octave, madhya their deaths), which was different from most of their Medieval predecessors. With the sapthak, the middle octave, and taar sapthak, the higher octave preserved and new printing techniques, music and musical ideas were able to be -- had been established the people. The distinctive musical sounds of the Renaissance Concepts distributed toas the ranges within which musical composition could function. era were like taal, of a and jati, ways in polyphonic can be used, in the music of Byrd, comprisedbeat,smooth, imitative,which notes style, as seenwere being recognised and established. Palestrina, and Lassus. While sacred music remained of great importance, secular music was starting to become increasingly common. Therefore, the polyphonic style was not around this time, between 200 BC and secular madrigals. The repertoire of is It was only used in sacred music, but also in 200 AD, that Bharata's Natyashastra instrumental music written. One of the first authoritative texts on the performing arts, said to have been also began to grow considerably. New instruments were invented, including two keyboard intended as the fifth Veda, laying down rules and structures that the Natyashastra was instruments called the clavichord and virginal. In addition, many existing instruments were enhanced. The lute became the favored instrument performers were to follow in theatre, dance and music. of the time period, and it was established as the standard instrument for family music making writing about music, Bharata makes the distinction the primary forms formusic, When during the 16th century. Masses and motets were between Gandharva sacred vocal polyphony.Dhruva were accompanied by theHe also a small instrumental ritualistic singing, and These Gana, music for theatre. lute or provides excellent ensemble or consort. his writing, the high includedwhich studies in music had reached. indications, through Secular vocal forms level to motets, madrigals and songs, while instrumental pieces were usually short polyphonic works or music for dancing. RenaissanceNatyashastra gives very significantcompared with the Indian music, various "Bharata's polyphony was harmonious when information about Medieval style. Imitation was a methodand musical instruments,makeserves as an indispensable link concepts related to it, that composers used to and elaborate music more coherent and to give the listener the Vedic period, music in the epics, Panini, Buddhist and Jain between music during a sense of arrangement. Imitation, where one melodic line shares, or "imitates," the same musicalof Matangaaand Sarangadeva." (Evolution of works, and the music during the time theme as previous melodic line became an important polyphonic technique. Imitative polyphony can be easily heard in the music Indian Music, Neerja Bhatnagar, Publication Scheme, Jaipur, First Edition 1997) of Byrd, Gibbons, and Gabrieli. Additionally, the masses and motets of composers such as Josquin also displayed the imitative polyphonic style. Imitative polyphony For the first seven centuries or so, the Natyashastra functioned as the main doctrine was so important that it continued into the Baroque period, especially in sacred music to be followed in terms of music. Till Matanga, a scholar who lived somewhere in the for the church. 7th to 9th Centuries, wrote the Brhaddesi. Later, in the 13th century, Sarangadeva VOCAL the Sangita Ratnakar which, till today, is regarded as the most comprehensive wrote 15TH CENTURY treatise on ancient Indian classical music. English and Burgundian elaborates a great deal on the significance that each of the The Sangita Ratnakar Music FORM During the beginning of the Renaissance period, musical notes followed the same basic principles that the mind ofthe Medieval era. seven form has in evoking sentiment or feeling in were used the listener. It has However, techniques evolved and newof the raga as we The three main forms about up been argued that the later concepts styles emerged. know it originated at used this to the sixteenth century were mass, motet, and chanson. They were similar in that time. In fact, some ragas were mentioned as well. they all were polyphonic in texture, had four to six parts, and were all composed for voice. Additionally, the carol was watershed in the evolution of Indian Classical Music, a "The Sangita Ratnakar marks a also a popular Renaissance form. Mass The mass was a standard from which any It was polyphonic in style, with plainsong used music can be standard liturgical form. deviations or new developments in the field of for the tenor parts. Sometimes secular tunes would of Indianfor cantus firmus. The mass had a identified and examined." (Evolution be used Music, Neerja Bhatnagar, Publication regal mood to it and was of considerable length. It was divided into five sections, or Scheme, Jaipur, First Edition 1997) movements, and used sacred Latin text. Motet A motet was a sacred choral The Persian Invasion composition based on a single Latin text and sung in all voice parts. The top voice was greatly emphasized. The motet short in length, and written in one continuous By the time was also written on a variety of different subjects, usually derived from movement. It the Muslims established their rule in India, Indian music had already attained its classical form through the dedicated works of the Vedic saints and sages. Later, scholars like Bharata, Dattila, Matanga, Narad, and Sarangadeva contributed their own knowledge and wisdom in music to the scriptures and developed the field further. With the Persian invasions came a lot of destruction, not just of land and property, but of the very way of life in Northern India. While most of the Southern states (South of
suffered a great deal. The Hindu culture that had been in existence and had been evolving since the time of the Vedas had now to assimilate all the values and traditions of the Muslim rulers. The Persian kings brought with them their own entourages of artists, singers and scholars and thus their own evolved styles of music. The music of India, though, did not suffer and in The most popular and common secular own during fairly intact. the Bible. Chansonfact managed to survive with most of itsmusicidentity the early Renaissance was the polyphonic chanson. It was reminiscent of the solo song, which used the principalthis were many. Not only These secular texts were written in French. The reasons for melody in the top voice. had centuries of the guru- shishya The chanson had the same polyphonic texture of the mass butof learning rhythmic. parampara, teacher-student tradition, established a set way was more and passing on information down the generations, the very qualities of Indian music helped it Carol During the qualities would include the very a popular music structure within which survive. These Renaissance era, the carol was highly scientific form in England. It consisted of two parts and was sung to a religious poem of numerous stanzas with the a musician could operate with total freedom, the aesthetic appeal of the music, the same music and refrain. Franco-Flemish Music FORM The Franco-Flemish school of melodies and the unmistakable spiritual aspect of the music. music was at its height during the 1400s. The Franco-Flemish composers were more interested in creating new techniques within the popular existing forms, as opposed to Also, it has been pointed out that while a lot of Hindus did convert to Islam at that inventing new form types. Canon The cannon made its first appearance during the time, most of them grew up with Indian music and perhaps felt more comfortable with 1300s in the popular caccia of the Medieval era. It was abandoned at the turn of the it than with Persian music. next century and reappeared with new popularity during the latter part of the 1400s. The new canon employed some interesting techniques. 1. Mensuration canons-several Apart from these same melody at different rates of speed. 2. Retrograde canons-the voices carrying the social factors, research has uncovered that even during these turbulent times, Indian classical music was flourishing time values of the notes melody is sung backwards. 3. Augmentation canons-thein various kingdoms all across the country like Rajputana, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh parts with two the South. Gwalior increase in the imitating voice. 4. Double canons-four and Devagiri in different was fast emerging the stronghold of Indian classical form and many later renowned melodies, each canonically imitated. (55) Mass A new musicof mass emerged, called musicians came mass. Here, each successive section of the who sang in Akbar's the cantus firmus from this state including the famous Tansenordinary had the same court. melody. These cantus firmi were usually written in the plainsong style, but sometimes secular music was used. Most of the time, these masses were based on cantus firmus. It was around this time that the Bhakti movement started and various contributions by Motet Ther was less use of cantus firums in motetsChandidas were made, further saint poets like Alvaras, Jayadeva, Vidyapati and than in masses. The FrancoFlemish motet made useof Indian music. enriching the tradition of sections written in duet style, chordal style, fugal or imitative style, and free non-imitative counterpoint. Secular Music The chanson Developments During the 13th and 14th as it had been in the English style. The remained the dominant form of secular music, centuries Franco-Flemish school made variations to it and made it less sectionalized. Lieder, a monophonic or polyphonic Germanmehfil, gatherings of musicians, singers, dancers the With the Muslim rulers came the secular work, gained popularity from the end of and 1400s to the end of the noblemen and royals. These gatherings were for the express poets at the homes of 1500s. purpose of patronising artistes and performers in their skills and giving them platforms 16TH CENTURY It is in the 1500s for many Renaissancethese mehfils were a way of of to display their talents. In fact, that the performers reached its height. In terms vocal polyphony, the Renaissance exhibited monumental growth. Throughout the earning their living. For if they pleased the nobleman or royal, handsome rewards sixteenth be received in the form of reached its ultimate degree of perfection. Religious were to century, vocal polyphony precious jewels or sovereigns, rewards that would musicthem no longer led by the and thatCatholic Church, as legacy for their descendants. see was through hard times Roman would help build a Protestant music was also coming into common usage. While the vocal style still dominated the musical world, instrumental style began to increasingly appear. Secular music gained additional One such poet to emerge from the artistic ambience of the mehfil was Amir Khusrau popularity, and schools besides the dominating Franco-Flemish one evolved all across during the reign of Sultan Jalal-ud-din-Khalji. Amir Khusrau was a prolific poet who, it the globe. ROMAN CATHOLIC MUSIC Form Throughout the 1500s, liturgical music is said, in his young days wrote one new ghazal every day. His poetry is famous even grew in size, technique, and usage. Religious music was still dominated by masses and today and many still enjoy its timeless lyricism. In his later years he turned towards motets. Also, some non-liturgical forms began to develop and became somewhat Sama, mystic music sung by Chishtia Sufis. popular during the second half of the Renaissance. Mass The main type of mass used during this time was the cantus firmus mass. It used plainsongs and secular melodies. Khyal, common mass used during the time, found its origins in this period and the Another though not initiated during this sixteenth century was the parody mass, which superstructure of the chanson or motet altered years. These were ordinary mass. had a complete secular Khyal was formed in theseto fit the text of thealso the years in which Dhrupad as a completely canonic masses became less and less commonly After the early 1500s,distinct style of singing emerged. However, the most popular forms of singing in the 13th change centuries, were technique. In fugal motets, used. Motet The motet did notand 14thmuch in form or ghazals and qawwalis. each successive phrase of text introduced a new concept or theme that was then The Reign of Akbar imitated in other voices. Some motets divided the text from one line to the next so that more than one voice sang each new line of text. Non-liturgical forms The most By the time Akbar's form of the time period was the laude. This was a religious song popular non-liturgical rule came about in the 16th century, the music of North India had evolved into an entity a simple polyphonic of South India. The courts kept musical of praise that was givenrather distinct to thatsetting in chordal style. Its text was in traditions or Italian. either Latin alive and the darbar was a place for many a musician to nurture his talent. Schools Although the Franco-Flemish school still dominated the musical world, other It was during Akbar's reign that Abul Fazl's two works, Akbar Nama and Ain-i-Akbari were written. In addition to describing the music of the day, the latter dealt a little with the classification of ragas as well. Scholars, however, do make note of the fact that while Abul Fazl was, no doubt, a great thinker and knew a lot about music, most of his texts were based on enquiry and the questions he asked of various musicians and people he met.
understanding the Sangita Ratnakar. Stories abound of Tansen testing the musical talents of other musicians in the court by asking highly technical questions of them, questions that could only be answered by someone who had deeply studied music. Simultaneously, in other kingdoms across the country, vast amounts of research and enquiry was being done in the field of music in an attempt to better understand the form. schools became important, and developed music themselves. These schools were the An interesting the English school, the Venetian school, reign, gharanas school. Spanish school, point to note here is that before Akbar's and the German have very rarely been referred The was only Reformation led that his new developments REFORMATION MUSICto. ItProtestantafter Tansen diedto many descendants were in referred to as belonging to the Senia Gharana dominated the era, but Protestantism church music. Roman Catholic church music stillfrom the Gwalior school of music. However, some do feel that the music development of Martin Luther, who styles of added creative innovations to during the world. Germany Dhrupad, the vanis, sparked singing Dhrupad, were akin to his Ninety we Theses, in today. Akbar's court was the Protestant Reformation, withgharanas asFive know them1517, believed strongly said to be the liveliest in terms of patronage of the arts. A lot of this was also due that music should be involved in church music. He felt that the congregation should to the fact that Akbar himself was avidly interested in Chorale The chorale to promote participate in the service, especially in hymn singing. the arts and did a lot was one of good artistes. With the passing of Akbar, out said that a golden period in Indian the most important musical forms to come it is of the Protestant Reformation. It was a classical was meant to be sung by the congregation. At first, chorales were hymn thatmusic passed away. monophonic and then progressed to four part harmony. Eventually, the chorales were After Akbar (16th to 18th centuries) used in more elaborate settings and were performed by choruses. Choral preludes, were contrapuntal arrangements of chorales which were played on an organ. Akbar was the most celebrated of Mughal rulers not only because of his patronage of France In but also the Huguenot movement yielded an important literature they the arts France, because he was a strong king. His descendants, though of psalms set to music. Psalms Biblicalas exalted a place in history as Akbar did. and then set to favoured art, never found psalms were translated into French verse melodies. These psalms were meant to be sung in unison by the congregation and also to be sung at home. Additionally, kings andharmonization flourished.elaborate from the However, as long as there were four part courts, music and more Musicians contrapuntal arrangements of psalms were their gayaki, styles, and were continuously various states were constantly improving developed in this era. England Church Music Psalm and studyingbecame popular in England during the second half of the innovating singing also deeper aspects of music. Renaissance. The English mass equivalent of the Catholic mass was called the "service." This mass was set centuries, the Dhrupad was still the king of the courts. In the 17th and early 18th to texts in a polyphonic manner. Besides services, two other formsby the 18th century, the Khyal this point in time. These were the Catholic However, of polyphony were present at was becoming more and more popular with anthem, which was a catholic motet with had fairly embedded the verse anthem, of singers. By the 19th century, the Khyal an English text, and itself in the minds which alternated solo and choral sections and used organ or stringin the reign of Nawab Wajid musicians and the Thumri, too, was coming up, especially accompaniment. In addition, Anglican chant was based upon Catholic plainsong. The English language now Ali Shah (1847-56). replaced Latin texts, and the melodies were given metrical organization. The Rise of the British (18th to 19th centuries) SECULAR MUSIC Secular music of the time developed into wider geographic areas during the second half of the Renaissance. It continued to grow and diversify in form By this time, though, the British had fairly established their presence in the country. and style well into the 1600s. Secular music of the time had specific rules, according Bahadur Shah Zafar was the last Mughal emperor to rule North India. After the to Hugh M. Miller: 1. As in the 14th century, secular music again rivaled sacred music, Revolution of 1857, the British deposed him, took control and did away with the largely because of the widespread renaissance spirit of secularization and also because independent princely states. All Rajas and Nawabs began owing allegiance to the poetry was flourishing. 2. The rise of national schools was even more pronounced in British Empire. The taxes they formerly collected for themselves were now a part of secular that in sacred music, although the influence of Netherlands composers was still the British exchequer and they, in turn, received a Privy Purse out of which they had strong. 3. Secular music flourished in all European courts under the patronage of to maintain their expenses. Smaller nawabs had a rough time and most had to give up nobility 4. It should be remembered that Renaissance secular music everywhere was their lavish lifestyles. intended as entertainment for amateur performers rather than as concert music. 5. It was composed and performed as chamber music for a few participants rather than for The rise of the British Italian Form During the late 1400s, popular vocal gone, large choral ensembles.Empire spelt death for court arts. With their wealthforms, the nawabs and noblemen no longer canzoni, appeared in Italy. These forms of music referred to collectively as the vocalhad rewards to lavish on performers. Most had to move to other occupations. Yet, a few gharanas managed to survive and had dance were generally in four parts, strongly metrical, predominantly chordal, the ravages of this period to them. These forms Independence. like rhythms to emerge strong aftercame right before the 16th century madrigal. The madrigal developed from the 1500s to the 1600s, and had more expressiveness to it, The 20th Century was more contrapuntally elaborate, and was more polished overall. French Form The most popular secular form in France were the polyphonic chanson and the solo By the time the 20th century dawned, the Indian populace was gradually awakening to chanson with contrapuntal accompaniment. While some chansons were in chordal the fact that it no longer wanted to be ruled by a foreign government. The early years style, others had more elegant counterpoint with imitation. The chanson measures, a of the century saw the beginning of efforts made by people in different parts of the type of chanson from the late 1500s, made use of quantitative rhythms, which country to get independent. stressed syllables were given twice the note values of unstressed syllables, resulting in frequently shifting meters. English Form English madrigals were popular during the From a century. An English would seem that voices. of classical Indian light and sixteenthmacro perspective, itmadrigal used fivethe field It was written in a music reached a point A rest. With the patronage of the noblemen and royals gone, leisurely manner. of form of the madrigal called ballett was also popular. It usedvery few Indian classical artistes survived. Interest seemed to fade and classical music became the prerogative of the intellectuals. Then, newer forms of media started to emerge that brought with them sounds from all over the world. The airwaves were coming alive and a vast variety of western influences crept into Indian music. Popular music, which was mainly folk music till now, began to take on a different meaning altogether, especially with the advent of
populace all over the country could relate to was more in demand. Which is not to say that classical artistes were not -- musicians who were very deeply rooted in the classical tradition composed a lot of popular tunes. The gradually growing film industry began attracting professional musicians and the middle of the century saw many efforts made by the government to revive the classical lively contrapuntal style the hands with British. However, the trend refrains in arts that had suffered at alternatingof thechordal style for the stanzas.set by the movies completely type of secular of Indian music around. German Form A popular turned the face music in Germany during this time was the polyphonic lied. This was written in four voices with imitative counterpoint. The basis Within the was often popular songs. Another popular German form during the for this formfield of classical music, it was a different kind of development that started taking place in quodlibet. This form had various taking classical music out of Renaissance wasthe 60s with Pandit Ravi Shankar popular tunes and their textsthe country to audiences abroad. He was manner. Spanish Form The main Spanish humorously combined in a contrapuntalalso the first to experiment with mixing western music with during the Renaissance to the villancico. The villancico was a four part secular form the Indian classical formwasarrive at what is called fusion, or world music, a genre that is exceedingly popular with a work, written mostly in chordal style, today. regular metric construction. This was based on a three stanza poem and was musically structured according to the formula A However, popularof music was performed as solo songs with instruments by B B A. This form music was still only film music. Pop music, disco music playing the lower parts. artistes, did make something of an appearance in the late 70s and early independent 80s with singers like Nazia Hasan and Runa Laila. However, the trend didn't quite The Renaissance Era Instrumental catch on and it was only a few years later that pop artistes Alisha Chinai and Sharon Prabhakar the instrumental music of the there's one period did not equal the vocal Even thoughbroke the ice. Now, in the 90s, Renaissancenew pop star practically every month. music, in terms of quality and quantity, it still played an integral part of the era. Instrumental music gained in popularity and developeda musical form that was distinct from a longmusic. the popular perception of classical music was 'too cerebral' or 'too For vocal time, heavy'. However, recent years have seen a resurging interest in the field. An increase Even though the instrumental music of the Renaissance period did not equal the vocal in the number of artistes indulging in fusion and a growing number of organisations music, in terms of quality and quantity, it still played an integral part of the era. dedicated to spreading the richness of the tradition has helped revive interest in Instrumental music gained in popularity and developeda musical form that was distinct classical music. Also, younger, media savvy artistes realise the potential of the from vocal music. During the Renaissance era, instrumental music was written 'Channel [V]-MTV' platform and are working more towards attracting the younger according to specific rules. 1. Improvisation was very important in performance and listener. for melodic ornamentation. 2. Transcriptions of vocal music for instrumental performance were numerous. 3. Instruments were freely employed in the performance The Indian classical music tradition, however, has by no means faded. There are still of vocal music. 4. Some instrumental forms were borrowed from vocal forms, while teachers and disciples all over the country who dedicate a major part of their lives to others were instrumentally invented. Instrumental music also had specific the pursuit of this art, the sadhana of shastriya sangeet. characteristics during the Renaissance Era. The instrumental style of the Renaissance time period was also distinct. 1. Melodic range was wider than vocal limitations. 2. There was extensive ornamentation including coloration, embellishment, and figuration. 3. There was a much freer treatment of dissonance. 4. In lute and keyboard music contrapuntal parts were freely added or dropped without indicating rests. 5. There were exceedingly long and rapid scale passages. 6. There were numerous wide skips. During this era, the instruments on which musicians played from day to day also improved. The instruments most commonly used were of keyboards, strings, and winds. STRING INSTRUMENTS Bowed Strings Ancestors of the 17th century violin family, Renaissance viols, were fretted instruments with six strings tuned in fourths, with a third in the middle (A d g b e’ a’). They were used in various ensembles called consorts (consisting entirely of viols) or in mixed consorts, which had recorders and other instruments in it. Plucked Strings The most popular solo instrument of the Renaissance was the lute. It had an angled neck and pear shaped body. Lutes were fretted instruments. It had six strings tuned, as did viols, in fourths with a third in the middle (G c f a d’ g’). Lute music was often written in tablature, a special kind of musical notation that indicates the fret and string for a given note. Being extremely versatile, the lute was used for solo, accompaniment and for ensemble music purposes. WIND INSTRUMENTS The most important wind instrument of the Renaissance era was the recorder. The recorder was a hollow, end-blown wooden flute. The recorder was also a very versatile instrument and it was used in may different types of ensemble music. It ranged in size from treble to bass. Other notable wind instruments were the
shawm and the cromorn (double reed woodwinds), coronets (soft toned instruments made out of wood or ivy), and early trumpets and trombones (restricted to the natural tone of the harmonic series). These instruments were first emerging and were confined to fanfares or to outdoor music festivals. KEYBOARD INSTRUMENTS Organs and keyboards were the primary keyboard instruments used during the Renaissance era. They were commonly found in churches. In their earliest form, pedalboards were not built into such organs (except in Germany). Regals, or positive organs, were in wide use since the Medieval period, while the portative organ died out during the latter 1600s. Additionally, there were two other types of keyboard instruments now present in the musical world. They were the clavichord and the harpsichord. Keyboard instruments were mainly used for solo purposes during the Renaissance, and rarely accompanied vocal polyphony. It was an even rarer occurrence that a vocal or ensemble piece to be accompanied by a clavichord or harpsichord. ENSEMBLES The term Renaissance ensemble is meant to be used in a simplistic, unevolved form. Rarely did an ensemble match what we would today call an orchestra. Instead, ensembles were basically small chamber groups. Seldom was specific instrumentation for ensembles declared in a score. FORMS OF MUSIC Renaissance composers did not give much thought to whether their pieces would be vocal or instrumental. Most pieces of the time were written “per cantar e sonar”, which means “for singing and playing”. Composers wrote their works so that either the voice or instruments could be used to convey the message of their work. There was still a distinction between sacred and secular music during the 1700s. Dance Music In its begining stages, dance music was written to accompany social gatherings. Later on, during the 1700s, a more structured and specifically styled dance form was developed. Dance music became popular and its form was filled with strong rhythm and repeating sections. The dances of the time were usually arranged in groups of 2 or 3 movements. In the typical dance pair, both sections had the same tune; the first dance was in slow tempo while the following one was faster with a change of meter. The lute, which was popular, helped to play dance music, while the harpsichord and small ensembles also contributed to this art form. Cantus Firmus Forms The cantus firmus musical form was basically for use in the Church, as it was liturgical music. Usually, this type of music was played by an organist between verses of a hymn sung by the congregation or choir. Stylistically, a cantus firmus piece was based on simplistic plainsong or secular song, which was meant to be played by a harpsichord, organ, or an ensemble of viols. Improvisational Forms The prelude was the main improvosational form during the Renaissance. Usually composed for keyboard or lute instruments, it was an instrumental type which made use of a collection of materials in order to give the listener a feeling of improvisation. Variation Forms Variations were written in many different ways. Theme and variation form was based on a popular tune which itself was modified with each restatement. Another variation was called ground, which used short themes of four to eight measures in the bass and had a changing counterpoint played above it. A cantus firmus variation used a single melody which was repeated a number of times. Each time the melody was repeated it was accompanied by a different counterpoint and in a different voice. English hexachord variations used as a theme the first 6 notes of a scale. This was most common in virginal music. The Renaissance Era Composers Byrd, William (1543-1623) William Byrd was born in the county of Eincolnshire,
England (the same place where Robin Hood lived). William Byrd was a composer of music for both the Protestant and Catholic churches. For the Protestant church, he composed Great Service and Short Service. For the Catholic church, he composed masses, hymns, and madrigals. During his childhood, he was probably one of the Children of the Chapel Royal in London, since it is known that Byrd was raised listening to music composed by Thomas Tallis. Tallis was the organist and choir director of that Chapel. At age twenty, he became Organist of the Lincoln Cathedral in his home town and later became a Gentleman at the Chapel Royal. He became the organist at the Chapel and worked along with his mentor Thomas Tallis. Byrd is famous for writing extraordinary masses, motets, vocal and solo songs, and for chamber music composed for strings without voice. He is well known for his madrigals as well. The Sweet and Merry Month of May is very typical of the madrigals that Byrd wrote. He was described as a man with natural gravity and piety. He was versatile in instrumental form too, as he also wrote chamber music. During his life, he was considered the foremost composer of keyboard music in all of Europe. Byrd composed and excelled in writing sacred, secular, vocal and instrumental music and left a lasting impression on the musical world. Desprez, Josquin (1440-1521) Throughout his life, he was by far the most sought after composer in all of Europe. He was born in the Duchy of Burgandy, now Beligium, and spent his life living in various Italian cites. He retired to Conde in Northeast France. He helped to spread polyphony in Northern Italy. In Josquin's extended works, a certain subtlety and serenity were always included, (a characteristic of the Franco-Flemish school). The repetoire of his music surviving today is rather large and is made up of motets, masses and secular songs, in both French and Italian. He was a master of four-voice and other large textures, as well as parodies, light songs, and French chansons. Because of his human quality, quantity, and technical mastery, Josquin is still extremely renowned and respected as a composer today. Gabrielli, Giovanni (1554-1612) Born in Italy in 1554, Giovanni Gabrielli was a composer of sacred and secular vocal music. He also composed music for string, keyboard, and wind ensemble pieces. He is best known for his perfection of the cori spezzati musical form, in which choirs or performing groups are broken up into sections and dispersed in and around the performance space. Gabrielli was also famous for his chromatic motets written about damnation and hell. Additionally, he was a promoter of the music of Monteverdi. Gibbons, Orlando (1583-1625) Orlando Gibbons lived during the historical high point of English music. Gibbons is renowned as being the greatest English composer of his generation. He was born in Oxford, played and taught music to royalty, and died at the age 42. Along with other composers of the time, Gibbons wrote new music and developed new techniques for consort music. He also is famous for his sacred choral music, English anthems, and verse anthems. Additionally, he wrote consort songs for vocal madrigals and solo songs with viol consort accompaniments. His madrigal The Silver Swan is well known. His music remains well loved today and his choral music is constantly played as part of the English Cathedral repetoire. Ockeghem, Johannes (1410-1497) Ockeghem is known as one of the fathers of Renaissance music. He was born in 1410 and became one of the most respected composers of the fifteenth century. Very little of his musical repetoire survives today. He is known for his motets, masses, and secular chansons. Stylistically, Johannes Ockeghem was very distinct. In his vocal pieces, he placed an emphasis on expressive and complex bass lines. This new emphasis on lower textures allowed Renaissance
composers to have a wide range of diversity in their music. Ockeghem has been described as a purely technical master. He is also considered to be a pioneer of western polyphony and one of the supreme masters of lyrical and contrapuntal invention. Palestrina, Giovanni (1525-1594) Giovanni Pierluigi de Palestrina was an Italian composer who wrote over one hundred settings of the mass. He composed sacred music and was an important musical figure of the Renaissance. He is best known for his "seamless texture" of polyphony. His prominent works are his First Book of Masses, the Mass of Marcellus, and his First Book of Motets. He composed masses, motets, and sacred works. Adoramus te Christe is an example of his sacred music. His music is marked by purity, clarity, terseness, simplicity, and the omission of secular elements. Because of all of his worthy compositions, he earned the title "Prince of Music," which was engraved on the leaden plate that marks the tomb on his grave. He died in 1594, but his influence lasted for many eras past his death.
Romantic Era (1850 - 1920 C.E.) The Romantic era was a period of great change and emancipation. While the Classical era had strict laws of balance and restraint, the Romantic era moved away from that by allowing artistic freedom, experimentation, and creativity. The music of this time period was very expressive, and melody became the dominant feature. Composers even used this expressive means to display nationalism. This became a driving force in the late Romantic period, as composers used elements of folk music to express their cultural identity. As in any time of change, new musical techniques came about to fit in with the current trends. Composers began to experiment with length of compositions, new harmonies, and tonal relationships. Additionally, there was the increased use of dissonance and extended use of chromaticism. Another important feature of Romantic music was the use of color. While new instruments were constantly being added to the orchestra, composers also tried to get new or different sounds out of the instruments already in use. One of the new forms was the symphonic poem, which was an orchestral work that portrayed a story or had some kind of literary or artistic background to it. Another was the art song, which was a vocal musical work with tremendous emphasis placed on the text or the symbolical meanings of words within the text. Likewise, opera became increasingly popular, as it continued to musically tell a story and to express the issues of the day. Some of the themes that composers wrote about were the escape from political oppression, the fates of national or religious groups, and the events which were taking place in far off settings or exotic climates. This allowed an element of fantasy to be used by composers. During the Romantic period, the virtuoso began to be focused. Exceptionally gifted performers - pianists, violinists, and singers -- became enormously popular. Liszt, the great Hungarian pianist/composer, reportedly played with such passion and intensity that women in the audience would faint. Most composers were also virtuoso performers; it was inevitable that the music they wrote would be extremely challenging to play. THE ROMANTIC ERA VOCAL SECTION The Romantic Era brought further changes in the world of vocal music. Oratorios and choral music were semi-important vocal forms of the time, while the art song was by far the most important.
Art Song The song became its own special category of vocal music - separate from folk song, operatic aria, and popular song. It was very lyrical. Composers made great strides during this time period to closely associate the text or words of a piece with its musical counterpart. Melody The art song was poetic in nature, and its tones were more lyrical than the dramatic tones of an opera. An art song would turn written poetry into something tangible that could be emotionalized through its music. Its goal was to turn specific words or phrases into a musical scene. Accompaniment The piano helped to add more emotion into the Romantic art song. The accompaniment enhanced the mood and meaning of the text by harmonic, rhythmic, and melodic material independent of the voice part. It also provided harmonic and melodic support to the voice. It also served to punctuate the poetic form by interludes between stanzas and lines of the poem. Form Poetic structure is responsible for the musical form of a song. Two basic forms are through-composed a href="glossary.htm#through-composed">throughcomposedform and strophic form. Through-composed form is different for each stanza and the music closely follows changing ideas and moods in the poem. In strophic form, each stanza of the poem is set to the same music, whereas modified strophic form involves consecutive stanzas playing modified versions of the same music. There are other musical forms that are partly strophic, where some stanzas have the same music, while others have different music. Song Cycle The song cycle is a group of poems by one poet set to music by a composer. The song cycle has a central idea or mood. ORATORIO The oratorio was not the main focus of the romantic era. Composers concentrated more on opera and solo song. However, some composers wrote oratorios. Felix Mendelssohn was a notable composer of oratorio. His famous oratorios are St. Paul and Elijah. OTHER RELIGIOUS CHORAL MUSIC Church music had reached the height of its popularity in the past and was not a main form of music in the Romantic era. The differentiation between an oratorio and other religious music lay within the text, instead of within formal and stylistic factors. Liturgical texts and psalms were set to music more often as festival works for concert performance than as functional church music. Romantic church music was like an oratorio as it employed large choruses, an orchestra, and solo voices. Differing from the oratorio, church music of the time did not have a narrator or make use of a recitative. SECULAR CHORAL MUSIC Secular choral music partly gained its popularity in the Romantic Era due to an increase in nationalism and an increasing interest in folk song. Choral pieces of the time ranged from unaccompanied part songs to cantata like works with solo voices and orchestras. Choral elements were also used in a number of symphonic works by the great composers of the era. THE ROMANTIC ERA INSTRUMENTAL Beethoven was responsible for bridging the gap between the Classical and the Romantic eras. In his music, he tried to achieve a balance between the more structured, clear and strict Classical form and the newer exotic, innovative, and passionate of the Romantic style of music making. Other composers of this era followed suit, trying to maintain the balance that Beethoven’s music displayed. Music with a plot or which depicted a scene became important in this era as a way for composers to further display their artistic skill. Opera was not the only medium for
expressing this; instrumental music was beginning to do so as well. Composers developed the tone poem, which was an orchestral work that conveyed a story without words. The main instrumental musical traits of the Romantic Era were virtuosity, individualism, and nationalism nationalism. As chamber music became less and less popular, the orchestra and the piano emerged as the new popular trends of the musical world. As keyboard and symphonic instruments became commonplace, short piano miniatures and symphonic works became the main stapleor the era. KEYBOARD MUSIC The Piano Organ and harpsichord music, which were popular in past eras, began to diminish in importance. Piano music quickly stepped in to fill the void. The piano was an extremely versatile instrument, drawing both performers and composers to it at an increasingly rapid pace. The piano provided a wide dynamic range, the ability to distinguish between loud and soft, and a large capacity for sonority, which its predecessors did not have. This versatility enabled the performer to express artistic abilities that ranged from a quiet, delicate newborn kitten to that of a proud confident lion king. No other instrument to date matched the ability and endless possibilities that the piano suddenly gave musicians. The damper pedal allowed musicians to try new and exciting harmonic effects, and along with new keyboard mechanics, allowed them to fine tune their compositions in any number of ways. KEYBOARD FORMS There were various musical forms that were composed for the piano. Some of the popular compositions were etudes, character pieces, variations virtuoso piece that states a theme and then modifies it through changes of rhythm, meter, and structure. Stylized Dances Stylized dances were popular dance forms such as the waltz, mazurka, polka, and the gallop. SYMPHONIC MUSIC With the coming of the Romantic era, the orchestra grew in both importance, and size. More instruments were added, and gave this orchestra a wider range of sounds and emotions to put forth to the musical world. Instrumentation Woodwinds The woodwind section grew to include two or more bassoons, oboes, flutes, and clarinets. Additional color instruments such as the contrabassoon, the bass clarinet, the piccolo, and the English horn were added. Brass The brass section began to utilize instruments with valves, which gave this section a wider range and versatility. This section included trumpets, horns, trombones, and tubas. Percussion In addition to the use of timpani, there was now the use of percussion instruments such as bass and side drums, xylophones, celestas, gongs, cymbals, castanets, harps, bells, triangles, and chimes. Strings While no additional string instruments were invented during this era, the number of string instruments used in an orchestra increased in size to balance out the addition of the larger brass and woodwind sections. Orchestration New musical ideas were expressed through the use of additional solo parts into an orchestral work. A woodwind instrument or horn was favored for a solo part. Additionally, the string section experimented with, created, and used mutues, tremolo, harmonics, pizzicato, and double stops. Forms Symphony Symphonies were composed by a number of Romantic composers. These symphonies were very different from the ones written during the Classical era. These differences included: 1. Freer form of the internal structure of the movement 2. Variation on the number of movements 3. The symphony evolved from a formal design to a creative means of expression 4. The inner movements had more contrasting keys within them 5. Solo voices and choral sounds were added to the symphony. Concerto A concerto was an extravagant showpiece for a virtuoso soloist and orchestra. The violin and piano were the instruments of choice. This form had
three movements, which was similar to that of the concerto of the Classical era. Symphonic Poem (Tone Poem) This form was introduced in the mid 1800s by the composer Franz Liszt. It was a one movement, programmatic work based on a literary work or legend and usually had a descriptive title. Examples included Mussorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain, Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Fawn, Smetana’s The Moldau. Concert Overture This form was a single movement work and was usually found in sonata-allegro form. It was somewhat programmatic and usually had a descriptive title. It was not an orchestral introduction to an opera. A few examples were Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture, Mendelssohn’s Fingal’s Cave Overture, and Brahms Academic Festival Overture. Symphonic Variations Very few orchestral works were written in variation form. A few examples of this form are Brahm’s Variations on the Theme of Haydn, Franck’s Symphonic Variations for piano solo and orchestra, and Elgar’s Enigma Variations. Symphonic Suite These are programmatic works in several movements which do not follow the symphonic form. Examples of this were Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, Rimsky-Korsikov’s Scheherazade, and Grieg’s Peer Gynt Suite. Dances Orchestral music written in dance forms in pieces composed by Johann Strauss Waltzes, for example. CHAMBER MUSIC During the Romantic era, chamber music became increasingly obsolete. Chamber music did not possess the size, color, and sound of the symphony and could not match the piano’s warmth or versatility in range and expression. As a result, almost no new chamber music was written by composers, and virtually no program music was written for chamber ensembles. For the composers who still felt comfortable writing chamber music, the string quartet quartet was their choice. The composers of chamber music tried the freedom of expression that came with the Romantic era by writing new music for the piano - in trios, quartets, and quintets. The rarest form of chamber music became the solo sonatas for the violin and other instruments. Chamber music was not as important as it once had been and would never reach the height it once had. The Romantic Era Composers
Brahms, Johannes (1833-1897) Johannes Brahms was born in 1833 of German heritage. He began his musical career by playing the piano. He met the important musicians Clara Schumann and her husband Robert Schumann when he was on a tour of Europe. Robert Schumann and Beethoven were strong influences on Johannes Brahms. His first published work, a piano sonata in C major, combined Schumann's tender lyricism with Beethoven's overwhelming energy. So inspired was he by Beethoven's symphonies that it took Brahms more than 10 years to write his first. It was instantly hailed as "Beethoven's Tenth." Stylistically, as more time passed, Brahms music became more refined and distinctly stylized from other composers. He often achieved a balance between the Romantic exaggeration and experimentation of the era with the structural clarity of the Classical era. He was a composer of numerous waltzes: Another famous Brahms composition is Intermezzo Op. 117, and. The most dramatic of Brahms' works was the Cantata Rinaldo. After this, he never attempted to compose another opera. His later works are characterized by their warmth and color. Chopin, Frederic (1810-1901) Fredric Chopin was born in Poland in the year 1810. He began playing the piano at age four, and by age eight, was considered to be a child prodigy. He then toured Warsaw and was greeted by noble gentlemen and women, much like the childhood Mozart had experienced. He started composing music at age twelve. One of his first well-known compositions was the Rondo in C Minor, which was
written when he was fifteen. He composed numerous etudes. One of these etudes, called the Black Key Etude, was written in the key of Gb and used only sharps and flats. After he toured more of Europe, young Chopin fell in love with Vienna. After he moved to Vienna, his musical career seemed bleak, as his first public concert did not go well. He became depressed due to the fact that Warsaw had been attacked and occupied by Russia. However, this inspired the composer to write one of his most famous works, the Revolutionary Etude, Opus 10, No. 12. Since Vienna did not suit him, he moved to Paris, France. When in Paris, his music grew more appreciated and was praised by the other well-known composers of the era. After his childhood sweetheart, Maria Wodzinska, refused his hand in marriage, he became depressed. Again, Chopin rose above his tribulation and wrote the famous waltz, Les Adieux, about lovers who part. His last concert was held in the Salle Pleyel in Paris in February of 1848. Although he was sick, he finished the concert. Chopin died a year and a half later. Chopin was the master of the piano of his generation. In his lifetime, he composed over 200 piano pieces. He turned the piano into a more emotional tool then was ever thought possible. Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, Felix (1809-1847) Felix Bartholdy Mendelssohn was a famous German composer. Born in 1809, Mendelssohn lived a happy life from the start. Like other virtuoso composers, he was a child genius when it came to music. At age nine he gave his first piano concert, composed productively from the age of ten, and was ready to conduct the Sunday morning musicales that were the joy of his youth, by age thirteen. At age seventeen, he composed one of his well known works, The Midsummer Night's Dream. One part of this work was the "Nocturne." Inspired by the music of J.S. Bach, Mendelssohn arranged for a performance of Bach's Passion According to St. Matthew, which had not been performed in the eighty years since Bach's death. Along with his friend Devrient, Mendelssohn raised money, engaged the soloists, sold tickets, trained the chorus, and played the organ for what were three sold out shows. Mendelssohn continually promoted J.S. Bach throughout his lifetime and is party responsible for the formation of the Bach Society. Mendehlssohn went on to complete the Scotch and Italian Symphonies, and a new piano concerto called the Reformation Symphony. One of his most famous works is Elijah, an oratorio that he composed and conducted. Mendelssohn also composed two other well known pieces, Fingals Cave Overture and the Wedding March. Later in life he became the director of the first German Conservatory of Music in Leipzig, where he also taught. Mendelhssohn's music is marked by a delicacy, sparkle, seamless flow, and clarity. Puccini, Giacomo (1858-1924) Giacomo Puccini was a master of the Romantic Italian opera. He studied Opera at the Conservatory of Milan. He was able to go there due to a grant given to him by the Queen of Italy. He is well known for his opera La Boheme, which depicts the Bohemian lifestyle. He won 1000 Italian lire in a contest for his composition Capriccio Sinfonico. His other well-known operas are Tosca, Madame Butterfly, La Rondine, and Il Triptyh. Schubert, Franz (1797-1828) Franz Schubert was a very musically talented child. Of Austrian descent, he was taught to play the violin by his father and the piano by his brother. The choirmaster at his church trained his voice. At age eleven, he was sent to a private music school in Vienna. There he sang soprano in the choir and played second violin in the school orchestra. He grew to appreciate the music of Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven. When his voice changed, he left school and became a teacher in his father's school. After doing this for three years and feeling unfulfilled, he quit and focused on composing full time. Always living on the brink of starvation, yet always composing, Franz Schubert would spend the rest of his life in Vienna. Schubert
was eighteen when he wrote the masterpiece song Der Erlkonig. It wasn't accepted right away, as the public was critical of the dissonance in the accompaniment and its strange sound. However, today it is considered one of the greatest songs ever composed. Some other very well known works of Franz Schubert are Die Forelle, and Ave Maria. He composed over six hundred songs; in 1815 alone, he wrote one hundred and forty-four songs. He has been quoted as saying "I complete one song only to begin another." His last work was his Unfinished Symphony which is comprised of only the first and second movements. Schubert died at the young age of thirty-one. On his tombstone it reads, "Music hath here entombed a rich treasure but a still fairer hope." Tchaikovsky, Peter Ilyich (1840-1893) Russian born, Tchaikovsky is regarded today as one of the greatest and most popular symphonists, second only to Beethoven. As a person, he was extremely fragile, sensitive, and charming but breakable. His first symphony was not well received which made him extremely upset, as he had labored so hard over the completion of this work. A similar thing happened to another work of his, the B Flat Minor Piano Concerto. His teacher of the time, Nikolai Rubinstein, criticized the piece. This outraged Tchaikovsky, and he grew so angry that he took back the dedication to his teacher on the piece, and moved out of Rubenstein's house. Some of Tchaikovsky's most famous works are The Romeo and Juliet Overture, the opera Eugen Onegin, and the Violin Concerto. Tchaikovsky also composed the score to the well-known ballet, The Nutcracker. This piece is a multi-movement work and is typically performed around Christmas time. "Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies," "Trepak," "Arabian Dance," "Chinese Dance," "Dance of the Reed Flutes," "Waltz of the Flowers" are parts of this work. He is regarded today as one of the most expressive Romantic composers to come from Russia. Verdi, Guiseppi (1813-1901) The Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi had a life full of trials and tribulations. At age twenty-eight, he was a happy man as he had just written his first opera, Oberto, and was living in Milan with his wife and his two small children. Unfortunately this happiness was soon interrupted, as his two children and his wife died within months of each other. Due to his extreme loss, he became depressed and did not work for many months. His first work after this tragedy, a comic opera entitled King for a Day, was not received well by the public. Giuseppe Verdi vowed never to write again. Eventually, Verdi came into contact with a play that inspired him to write a musical score. This became one of his masterpiece operas Nabuco. The public instantly proclaimed it a success, and they gave it thunderous applause the first time it was performed. Verdi wrote additional operas entitled: Attila, Macbeth, I Lombardi, and Ernani. Other famous operas which he composed were Rigoletto, La Traviata, Don Carlos, La Forza del Destino, I Vespri Siciliani, Il Trovatore, Simone Boccanegra, and Un Ballo in Maschera. Another famous opera of Verdi's was Aida. This opera was written for the opening of the Suez Canal and was performed in Cairo in 1871 for the first time. It was received with tremendous applause, and is one of the most emotional, lyrical, expressive, and skillful operas ever written. The last opera he wrote was Falstaff, a comedic opera that showed wit an charm (a surprising feat considering he wrote it when he was eighty years old). He is one of the greatest masters of opera.
Thumri Thumri has often been scorned upon by the purists of Hindustani classical music due
to its semi-classical mode and emphasis on light ragas, which may not necessarily adhere to the rigid of rules of a raga. But, it was always hugely popular among music aficionados. Satish Nandgaonkar retraces the history and development of this most melodious of Indian semi-classical forms of music. Kathak maestro Pandit Birju Maharaj's simple gait is grace personified. When he sat before a harmonium at 'Kaisa Jadu Dara', a thumri recital recently held at Tata Theatre, not many knew that what he would eventually perform would not only be an unusual but a rare glimpse of an art form which is near extinction. The style of thumri is the seated abhinaya style, which is both sung and interpreted with gestures while the artist remains seated. Though Panditji performs this style very rarely, he remains the last great exponent of this style credited to the Lucknow gharana. Prevalent in the early years of the Lucknow gharana, the seated abhinaya is the only form of music where Thumri and Kathak, two distinct North Indian forms of music, blend imperceptibly, complimenting and enriching each other. Thumri has often been scorned upon by the purists of Hindustani classical music due to its semi-classical mode and emphasis on light ragas, which may not necessarily adhere to the rigid of rules of a raga. But, it was always hugely popular among music aficionados. This light, melodious form of semi-classical music has come a long way from the salons of courtesans in North India. Till the end of the 19th Century, Lucknow was the only recognised gharana of thumri. So the forms of thumri which developed later were classified according to their geographical locations. For instance, those which were created west of Lucknow in places like Farukkabad, Itawa, Bareilly, Mathura, Rampur and Delhi were referred to as the 'Pachai Ang of thumri', while those from the eastern areas like Benares and Calcutta came to be known as 'Purab Ang of thumri.' The third gharana of thumri was founded by Ali Baksh Khan of the Punjab/Patiala gharana and became popular in the 1940s when his sons Bade Ghulam Ali Khan (1902-1968) and his younger brother Munawar Ali Khan lent it a distinctive style. This came to be known as the 'Punjab ang of thumri'. Essentially classified into Bol Baant or Bandish thumris and Bol Banao thumris, the latter is the more modern of the two. Bol Baant indicates fragmentation, as in the Hindi word baantna, where the emphasis is more on dissection of the lyrics and embellishing them with classical ragas during presentation. Bol Banao indicates making or construction, from the Hindi word banana, where the stress is more on emoting the bhav (feeling) in the lyrics of the thumri. The 'Pachai Thumri', which was largely Bol Baant thumri, incorporated folk forms of Western Uttar Pradesh like Holi, Rasiya, Malhar, Sawan, and Led, while the Bol Banao thumri absorbed Eastern UP folk forms like Chaiti, Kajri, Purabi, Jhumar etc. The content of Bandish thumris focuses more on the Krishna Lilas -- the amorous and playful adventures of Lord Krishna with the gopis and his soulmate Radha. In contrast, Bol Banao thumris are not merely catchy for the ears but also carry profound
emotional expressions. Though initially thumris were composed in various dialects of Northern India, the largest number of compositions are found in Braj Bhasha, the primary dialect of North India during the 15th to 19th century, now eclipsed by the more Sanskritised, Khari Boli dialect. It is pertinent to note that thumri's development is closely linked with the evolution of Khyal singing and Kathak dance. The bhavs or moods depicted in thumri lyrics can be presented both, through vocals as well as dance. The contents of thumris show that it is linked to the ashtanayikas or eight primary types of heroines defined by Bharata in his treatise, the Natyashastra. These eight types of heroines constituted the framework for subsequent dramas and poems including the contemporary thumri texts. Bharata and other theorists have classified heroines to describe and isolate individual characters and moods so, that artistes could reproduce them in their subtlety. Heroines were classified according to their amorous inclinations (anxious or detached), age (four stages of youth), social status (queen, aristocrat or harlot), their relationships with their lovers, their sexual propensity and so on. These classifications have created an astonishing 385 types of nayikas. According to thumri exponents, the study of nayika bhed or classification of heroines is necessary and helpful in rendering thumris effectively. Thumri was traditionally written to accompany abhinaya (representational dance) in Kathak, which generally portrays a nayika. Most pre-1900 authors have based their texts on stereotypical nayikas. The types include 1. Vasakasjya nayika (one dressed for union with her lover) 2. Virahatannahita nayika (one distressed by separation) 3. Svadhina nayika 4. Kalahantarita (one separated from her lover by a quarrel) 5. Kandita (one enraged by her lover, reproachful) 6. Vipralabdha (one deceived by her lover) 7. Prositashatrka (one with sojourning husband) 8. Abhisarika (one who moves to her lover, who travels for midnight meeting through dark jungle etc) 9. Pravatsyatpatika (one disturbed by the prospect of her lover's departure) Origin Wajid Ali Shah who governed Lucknow from 1847 to 1856 and Sadiq Ali Khan, a renowned thumri singer from the Qawwal-bachhe gharana, are generally credited with popularising and refining thumri in the 19th century. Shah is credited with creating several thumris apart from laying the foundation of Urdu theatre in India. But, the earliest references to thumri are found in the historical texts of the Gupta period (4th
to 6th century AD) and Kalidasa's play 'Malvikanimitra' where the main protagonist, Malvika, performs thumri. Other explicit references, prior to 1850, are found in a treatise written by Captain Augustus Willard titled 'Treatise of the Music of Hindostan' in 1834. Similarly, they are found in 'Radhagovind Sangitsar', a treatise commissioned by the Pratap Simha, the Maharaja of Jaipur in 1803. But the thumri of the 19th Century had very little stylistic resemblance to the Bol Banao thumri of today, which is sung in slow tempo, emphasising the emotive portrayal of the text through a leisurely exploration. In the 19th Century, thumris denoted a piece in a medium or fast tempo (teentaal or rupak or ek taal) stressing the bol baant, a set of techniques where the text is fragmented for an elaborate vistar (alaap like passages), taan (fast melodic runs), and layakari (rhythmic manipulation). Thumri and Khyal While the Bol Baant or Bandish thumri resembled Chhota Khyal in text, taal and compositional structure, it also differed from it on several counts. Firstly, Bol Baant thumri was associated with Kathak dance. Secondly, it employed a specific set of light ragas. Thirdly, its style was technically less demanding than Chhota Khyal, which requires a command of virtuoso taans and a strict adherence to raga rules. The Bol Baant thumris were also essentially composed by a specific group of Lucknow based composers who used Hindu pen-names despite being Muslims. For instance, the most popular thumris of that time are attributed to Lallan Piya and Sanad Piya. The resemblances found between Chhota Khyal and thumri are primarily because both forms evolved in a similar way. Till the 18th century, Dhrupad was the favoured classical court genre. Khyal emerged as a more rhapsodic and light alternative form relying more on fast taans rather than the austere Bol Baant layakari or Dhrupad. Khyal was patronised by people like poet-musician Amir Khusro (1253-1325), Hussain Shah Sharqi, the Sultan of Jaunpur (1457-83). It was not until Mohammed Shah of Delhi came to rule in 1719 that Khyal entered the royal courts as a favoured classical genre. It was in Delhi, which supported hundreds of tawaifs or courtesans who were accomplished musicians, that thumri and khyal developed rapidly. The courtesans cultivated the interpretative song and dance forms. As Delhi's fortunes began declining after Aurangzeb's death in 1707, the Mughal emperors succeeding him began taking interest in the lighter forms like khyal and thumri. They preferred it to the more sober Dhrupad. Thumri and Kathak The way thumri's evolution is linked to that of khyal, it also evolved complementing Kathak. In the Mahabharata, the word Kathak appears denoting actors, singers. Kathaks were professional story tellers who narrated stories from the Hindu epics and mythology. During the medieval era and Mughal empire, Kathak flourished in temples and courts. Its speciality was the dramatic presentation of Vaishnavite myths and the stories were supported by mime and accompaniment. In the 18th century, Kathak became very popular in Lucknow, paralleling the rise of thumri. But, Kathak was essentially embued with Vaishnavism, specialising in the portrayal of tribulations and joys of Radha and Krishna -- Krishna's teasing, and holi playing, and Radha's passionate longing.
As Delhi's fortunes declined, after the invasion of Persian ruler Nadir Shah in 1738, the courtesan district in Delhi became deserted. At the same time, Lucknow was emerging as the new political, economic and cultural centre of North India. Kathak's evolution began rapidly after dancer Prakashji migrated from Allahabad to Lucknow. His sons, Durgaprasad and Thakur Prasad were employed as dancers in the court of Wajid Ali Shah. Durga Prasad's son, Binda Din Maharaj (1836-1917) contributed immensely to the evolution of Kathak and was responsible for the sensual amalgamation of Kathak with thumri. Binda Din Maharaj, who popularised the Lucknow gharana of music, studied thumri from Sadiq Ali Khan. He first created what are called arth-bhav thumris, which are designed to be rendered through dance. In the early Lucknow tradition, a dancer would sing a line of the song and then interpret it while seated through gestures and facial expressions. This tradition of seated abhinaya was highly popular initially, but as thumri achieved sophistication, thumri exponents chose to specialise in either singing thumri or performing Kathak accompanied by a vocalist. Renowned thumri exponents like Gauhar Jaan, Siddeshwari Devi and Rasoola Bai rendered seated abhinaya occasionally. Shambhu Maharaj, son of Binda Din Maharaj and the guru of his nephew Birju Maharaj, remained the last great exponent of this style. Gharanas While Kathak and thumri prospered in Lucknow, the Benares gharana lent it a different flavour. Due to its proximity to traditional folk music traditions, the thumri from the Benares gharana remains seeped in it and has less embellishments of classical tools. Though Lucknow experimented with serious ragas like Malhar, Malkauns, and Darbari in their bandish thumris, they are not found in the bol banao thumris of Benares. Kirana gharana vocalist Abdul Karim Khan(1872-1937) though a Khyaliya evolved a new approach to thumri singing. His style displayed a warm devotionalism. It was later picked up by disciples like Sawai Gandharva (d 1952), Suresh Babu Mane (d 1953), and Roshan Ara Begum. The style was then adopted by their disciples like Hirabai Badodekar (b 1905), Saraswati bai Rane, Bhimsen Joshi (b 1922), and Manik Verma. Thumri was sung by other gharanas like Faiyyaz Khan (1886-1950), Pyar Khan, Vilayat Hussain Khan, Latif Khan, and Mohammed Khan of Agra gharana, Mushtar Hussain Khan of Rampur gharana, Rehmat Khan of Gwalior, Kesar Bai Kerkar of Jaipur Atrauli gharana. Renowned ghazal singer Begum Akhtar, who learnt from gurus of Kirana and Patiala gharanas, was instrumental in presenting a style of thumri which was a mix of Purab and Punjab Ang of thumri. Bade Ghulam Ali Khan (1902-1968) contributed in a big way in popularising the Punjab style of thumri, though he always maintained that there was only one 'Purab Ang' to thumri. Son of Ali Baksh Khan, Bade Ghulam Ali belonged to a mirasi family whose traditional occupation was to teach courtesans and accompany them on the sarangi. He was instrumental in further bringing together thumri and khyal forms. Gradually, the up-tempo thumri adopted the taan techniques of khyal and tappa. Though this enriched its style, it also led to bandish thumri being absorbed into Chhota Khyal. The emphasis on Bandish thumri went out of vogue as singers either
mastered the larger raga repertoire and technical demands of Khyal, or else concentrated only on the emerging Bol banao thumri of today. A gradual deceleration of tempo, a corresponding increase in emphasis on leisurely Bol Banao thumri and the replacement of classical teen taal with folk-driven metres like Sitarkhani or Deepchhandi took place. Thus Bol bano thumri resembles the strictly classical Bada Khyal due to its slow tempo. As the courtesan's salons and the aristocratic set up gave way to the modern concert halls, it changed not only the patrons of thumri but its basic goals and techniques. The seductive functions of thumri were altered and it became a more pure, abstract art form whose techniques and goals were purely aesthetic.
The Baroque Era (1600-1750 C.E.) The term Baroque era describes the style or period of European music between the years of 1600 and 1750. The term Baroque was derived from a Portuguese word meaning "a pearl of irregular shape." The word Baroque was initially used to imply strangeness, abnormality and extravagance, applying more to art than music. It is only in the 20th century that this term has been employed to refer to a period in music history. When compared with its predecessors, Baroque music can be seen as being highly ornate, lavishly texturized, and intense. The music of this time period was characterized by rich counterpoint and a highly decorated melodic line. The music of this period has a number of defining characteristics including the use of the basso continuo and the belief in the doctrine of the affections. The doctrine of affections allowed composers to express emotions and feelings in their compositions. Another distinguishing characteristic of the Baroque era was the emphasis on contrast of volume, texture, and pace in the music, as compared to music of the late Renaissance which did not concentrate on these elements. In addition, Baroque music broke away from the harshness of the Medieval and early Renaissance style with new emphasis on the use of vocal and instrumental color. Secular types of music were now in abundance and used as widely as those of the liturgical musical styles. Imitative polyphony (more than one line of music) still was an extremely important factor in writing and playing music, while the homophonic method (a musical technique that displays a vast separation amongst the melody line and the accompaniment) was gaining acceptance and use quite rapidly. This homophonic style eventually became dominant in instrumental forms of music as well. Musical works containing a continuo part in which a keyboard (usually an organ or harpsichord) and a bass instrument (usually a bassoon or a cello) helped to convey the harmonic support of chords under the melodic lines. Although homophonic music was becoming increasingly popular during this time in music history, new forms of polyphonic music were also developing simultaneously. Similar to composers during the Renaissance, composers during this period felt that the art of counterpoint was essential to their artistry. Two extremely strict forms of imitative polyphony, cannons THE BAROQUE ERA VOCAL OPERA Baroque opera developed from the stories of ancient Greek tragedy. Italian musicians sought to express the emotion and depth of these Greek tragedies and thus integrated them into their own modern form, the opera. There are certain things that make up an opera. The music, orchestra, libretto, performers, costuming, and stage design
(complete with scenery and lighting). There would almost always be some sort of solo part, whether it be a solo aria, duet, or trio. The opera would open with the overture, the instrumental piece that the orchestra would play to introduce the performance. Along with the orchestra a chorus was also present in the opera. Italian Opera Florentine Opera At the end of the 1500s, a group of Florentine noblemen wanted to bring back ancient Greek tragedy. Calling themselves the Camerata, they created the stil rappresentativo, or theater style. This was a new style of singing of drama, and, consequently, became the earliest operas. This new form of music developed because composers of the polyphonic madrigal style were looking for ways to convey dramatic expression. This new "theater style" became prevalent and was used consistently in opera. Roman Opera In the 1630s, Rome became the center of opera. Roman opera differed from the Italian form in that it focused more on religious subjects than on Greek mythology. Roman opera also employed the use of its chorus to a greater extent. The aria and the recitative were beginning to become more distinct and greatly differed from one another. The intermezzi, a comedic interlude between acts, would be the model for the future comedic opera style. Venetian Opera Venice became the center of Italian opera in the early to mid 1600s. In 1637, the first public opera house, the Teatro San Cassiano, opened its doors in the city of Venice. The Venetian opera had its own special attributes. It used less choral and orchestral music and placed more emphasis on formal arias as well as on elaborate stage machinery. The bel canto, or "beautiful singing" style, started to appear. This style placed more focus on vocal elegance than on dramatic expression. Two final characteristics of venetian opera were its complex and improbable plots and the prototype of its overture, which was a short instrumental fanfare performed at the beginning of the opera. Neopolitan Opera European opera was dominated by the Neopolitan opera form during the later 1600s and early 1700s. During this period, operas became more artificial and formalized from the dramatic standpoint. An A-B-A sectional structure, called the da capo aria, and a siciliana, another aria in a minor key with six-eight meter and slow tempo, were widely used. As far as other components of the Neopolitan opera, the orchestra’s role was greatly diminished and the chorus was almost nonexistent. Recitatives were now being used, although they did not hold the same level of importance as the aria. The recitativo secco, or dry recitative, which had a declamatory melody with sparse continuo accompaniment, and the recitative accompagnato, which used and orchestral accompaniment were featured. A compromise between these two main types of musical form, the aria and the recitative, emerged in the creation of the arioso. Male sopranos, or castratti, were the "superstars" of opera, with their showy and often improvisational use of vocal technique. The sinfonia, or Italian overture, was developed with a fast-slow-fast scheme. It would later develop into what is now known as the classical symphony. French Opera and Ballet French opera didn’t develop until the second half of the 1600s. It was inspired by popular French dramas and from court ballet. The French took opera and made it their own, by putting unique characteristics into the basic Italian opera's mainframe. The French overture became common. It placed a unique spin on the traditional overture. It was made up of two repeating sections; the first was in slow tempo and dotted rhythm, while the second was in lively tempo and fugal texture. French opera also made less use of virtuosity and paid attention to the accentuation of the literature. It used shorter and simpler dance-like airs, more expressive and melodic recitatives, and put greater importance on the drama. It also added ballet and increased the use of the orchestra. BALLET During the Renaissance,
it was typical in France for court dances with scenery and costumes to take place. This was an early form of ballet. However, the first actual “ballet” or extant ballet didn’t occur until 1581. It was called the Ballet Comique de la Reine. It is important to note that in the beginning, royalty would take part in the ballet, a tradition that started at the court of King Louis XIV at Versailles. Additionally, Lully and Moliere worked together to create a new form of ballet, the Comedie-ballet, a combination of a play and ballet. Beginning with Lully, ballets were entered into operas. He called this tragedies-lyriques or opera-ballets. OPERA IN ENGLAND English Opera never advamced the popularity it had in both France and Italy. Since Italian operas were typically performed in the city of London, the English did not feel the need to make their own operatic form. Instead, they were more involved in theater music forms, especially that of the Masque, Incidental and Entr’acte. Masque A Masque was an extravagant play performed privately for nobility. It was a play based on an allegory or mythology and had songs, dances, poetry, sometimes recitatives, and instrumental pieces. Incidental and Entr’acte music Incidental music was composed to be played during the action scenes in plays. Entr’acte music was to be performed between acts or scenes in a play, with instrumental pieces called curtain tunes or act tunes. Some incidental and entr’acte music was so complete and developed in some works, that the play could almost be seen as a true opera. COMIC OPERA The opera seria was little too serious for some, and, consequently, the comedic opera appeared in the early 1700s as a way to lighten the emotions of the time. In it, parody, satire, and humor were present. Comedic opera had some general characteristics. Spoken dialogue replaced the recitatives of serious opera, except in Italian comic opera. The characters, aria texts, and melodies of serious operas were often parodied, and subjects were now light, frivolous, and humorous. Small ensemble groups and choirs were used at the conclusion of acts. Commonplace characters replaced the exalted or heroic figures of serious operas and popular tunes replaced the dramatic and formal arias. Some famous types of comedic opera are the Italian opera buffa, the French opera comique, and the English ballad opera. VOCAL CHAMBER MUSIC This was a form of music that was non-theatrical less important than opera, and composed for a few performers and an intimate audience in a small room. Solo Song Solo song was vocal music that was a solo piece for one performer. By the 17th century, a huge number of solo songs had developed. This form was most famous in Spain, England, Germany, and Italy. Often, it would have lute accompaniment to go along with the performer's voice. Chamber Cantata The Chamber cantata developed after 1650. It was a non-theatrical composition, short in length, and based on texts of a narrative character. It was written for one or two solo voices with an accompaniment by the basso continuo. It had secco recitatives alternating with da capo arias, usually two or three of each. The Baroque Era Instrumental The Baroque Era brought monumental changes to instrumental music. During this time, instrumental music became just as important as vocal music both in quality and quantity, as many new developments occurred in the instrumental world. General Characteristics During the Baroque Era, the use of imporvisation increased. This change was most important in instrumental music. However, as important as it was, improvisation caused problems when musicians attemped to understand and perform Baroque music accurately. Basso continuo, or figured bass, was purely an instrumental concept. It is music that is played by one or more bass instruments and a
keyboard instrument. Basso continuo gave bass parts an importance of their own in all areas of ensemble music. It is one of the most distinct features of the Baroque Era as a whole. Thematic variation occured in all aspects of instrumental music, during this time period. In addition to thematic variation, sequencing was also used. This was a repetition of melody patterns on successively higher or lower pitches. It became a typical part of instrumental music during the mid-Baroque period. Another characteristic of the Baroque Era was the distinction between the chamber ensemble and the orchestra. This started to take place around the late 1600s. Equal tempered tuning of keyboard instruments was now commonplace. The old method of tuning, which was called intonation was no longer practiced. Bach's The Well Tempered Clavier was composed to show equality of keys in the new tuning system. INSTRUMENTS OF THE BAROQUE ERA The Baroque Era saw the continuation of all the instruments that were used during the Renaissance. During this period, there were mechanical and technological improvements to the instruments, and they started to develop into the instruments that we know today. Another important development of the Baroque Era was the development of the violin family, which occurred at the end of the 1600s. Keyboard Instruments Keyboard instruments were used for basso continuo parts and solo music. They were involved in a major portion of the instrumental literature of the time. During this era, three types of keyboards existed; the clavichord, the organ, and the harpsichord. Clavichord The clavichord produced sound by striking a metal wedge striking against a string when a key was pressed. The sound quality was weak, but the instrument was able to produce some dynamics. It was mainly used in Germany and usually played as a solo instrument or in a small ensemble. Organ The Baroque organ was more powerful than its predecessor, the Renaissance organ. Organs were mostly associated with church music and used as solo instruments or accompaniment instruments. A vast growth in organ literature took place during this period. Harpsichord The Harpsichord was very popular and was known by various names in different parts of Europe. In Italy, it was called a clavicembalo. In England, it was referred to as a virginal. In France it was termed a clavecen, and in Germany, it was named klavier. The harpsichord usually had two manuals or keyboards. It's tone was produced with quills which plucked the strings mechanically every time a key was pressed. The tone of the harpsichord was stronger than the clavichord but it could not produce dynamics. The harpsichord was the main instrument employed in the basso continuo. It is one of the most distinctive sounds of the Baroque Era and was the most favored instrument in solo music. String Instruments The principal string instruments of the 1600s were the viol family. The new violin family of instruments slowly replaced them. The violin soon became the new leader of the stringed instruments, and its sound became the dominant timbre in late Baroque ensemble music. The bass viol commonly known as the contrabass, or double bass was still utilized, even though the other viols died out. During the 1600s, the lute started to lose its dominance in the music world. A few pieces of lute music were still being produced, mainly in France and Germany. Wind Instruments During the Baroque era the principal woodwind instruments used were the bassoon, flute, and oboe. Older end-blown recorders were still in use during the late Baroque period. The transverse flute started to become a common solo and ensemble instrument. Brass instruments such as horns, trumpets, and trombones were used in large ensembles, but rarely as solo instruments. Percussion Instruments Timpani were the only percussion instruments in common use at this time. They were used sparingly in the orchestra. FORM During the beginning of the Baroque Era, the
Renaissance forms continued to dominate the musical world. During the second half of the century, there were distinct changes, as new musical forms appeared. Fugal Forms The early fugal forms were carried over from the Renaissance Era. They included the fantasia, canzona(which was the forerunner precursor of the sonata), and the capriccio. These were all written for keyboard instruments. By the mid 1600’s, these forms were replaced by the fugue. The Fugue of the 1600’s was monothematic. Each voice stated the theme. The subject was played in the tonic keyand answered in the dominant key. Fugues were composed for all media, including choral ensembles. They were also written as independent pieces and as movements in larger works. Variation Forms Thematic variations were used in various forms such as cantus firmus, canzona, and dance suites. Keyboard instruments mainly carried out these variation forms. Ground, which was a type of variation used in England, had a short recurrent theme in the bass line and a continually changing counterpoint. Improvised variations on a ground are called divisions. Variations were also called passacaglia and chaconne. Cantus firmus variations were important in Germany. They restated the chorale melody completely and had a different contrapuntal setting each time. Dance Suite Dance music retained its importance from past musical eras. Suites or partitas were the main dance forms. Harpsichords, chamber ensembles, and orchestras all played dance music. There was no standard number or order for the movements in the suites, and usually the movements were in the same key. The form for each dance movement was binary, meaning it had two sections that were repeated. The first section modulated to the dominant key and the second section began in a contrasting key and then moved back to tonic key at the conclusion. Common dance movements that were specific to the Baroque Era were the courante, gigue, allemande, and sarabande. Every now and then, other forms of nondance movements appeared in suites such as airs, fugues, and variations. Chorale Prelude This was the most important category of Baroque organ music and was used primarily in church music. The cantus firmus was the most common chorale prelude. It had longer note values and a fast moving counterpoint. The cantus firmus could show up in any part of the piece. Sometimes it would appear in the pedels, while at other times each phrase of the chorale would appear in imitative counterpoint preceding the cantus firmus in longer notes. A coloration chorale stated the chorale melody in the top part as a cantus firmus and disguised the original melody by using ornamention. The chorale partite was a set of variations on a chorale tune. Each variation was called a verse. The chorale melody was modified but otherwise kept intact as cantus firmus. Only the accompanying counterpoint changed. Improvisatory Forms Certain keyboard forms such as the prelude, fantasia, and toccata appeared regularly during the Baroque Era. There were no specific rules for these improvisatory forms. They shared some common items such as contrapuntal textures, rapid scales, sustained chords, and figuration. Improvisation lacked distinct thematic material and formal unity. Sonata The sonata was a multi-movement work that was composed for various solo instruments and for small chamber groups during the Baroque era. The term sonata appeared in the early 1500s in Italy. There were three types of sonatas: an unaccompanied solo sonata that was written for the violoin or cello; an accompanied solo sonata that was written for different instruments with basso continuo; and a trio sonata that was written for two solo instruments and basso continuo played by a keyboard instrument or cello. The church sonata evolved in Italy after 1650. It had a number of movements that contrasted in tempo and texture. By the end of the Baroque Era, church sonatas were written in four movements. The tempo of the movements followed a slow-fast-slow-fast plan. They were meant to be played in parts of a church service and used the organ to perform the continuo parts.
The chamber sonata or sonata da camera was a suite of dance movements. They were named corrente, giga, sarabanda, and allemanda. Harpsichords were used to play the continuo in a chamber sonata. By the late Baroque era, there were few distinctions between church and chamber sonatas. They both included dance names for some movements and only had tempo indications on some of the sonatas. Tower sonatasor turmsonaten were composed for a small group of wind instruments. They were meant to be played at certain times of the day from church steeples or towers. Keyboard sonatas were solo sonatas for the harpsichord and appeared at the end of the 1600s. These sonatas represented a very small percentage of Baroque instrumental compositions. Orchestral Music The Baroque orchestra did not have standardization. It was composed mainly of strings, while wind instruments and percussion instruments were used less frequently. The bass part of the orchestra played the basso continuo. Instruments of different kinds doubled on each part as there was not much color definition to the Baroque era’s orchestration. The solo concerto was fully developed towards the end of the Baroque Era. It was a concerto for one instrument and an orchestra. It was written in three movements using a fast-slow-fast plan. The concerto grosso was an important form of Baroque orchestral literature. It consisted of a group of two or three solo instruments (concertino) playing in opposition to the orchestra as a whole (tutti). It was often played in alternating and contrasting sections. The Baroque Era Composers
Bach, Johann Sebastian (1685-1750) Johann Sebastian Bach was known as "Old Bach", a name given to him by King Frederick of Prussia. This title was given to him because of his reputation as a very serious person. Bach had an innate musical talent. As a child, he learned to play the organ and the clavichord and sang in a choir. He was able to support himself by his music at the age of fifteen and held several organist positions in nearby towns. He was a master at composing concertos, cantatas, oratorios, chorales, piano inventions, and other religious music. The F Major and A Minor piano inventions are very well known. For most of his life, the organ and clavichord were his instruments of choice. He is considered the father of counterpoint. Bach was not introduced to the piano until he was sixty years old. Once he discovered the instrument, Bach wrote a six-part fugue for King Frederick as a "musical offering". Today that fugue is considered one of the most remarkable fugues in all of music history. Later on in life Bach was stricken with blindness. He underwent an operation to try to correct the blindness, but it was unsuccessful and only aggravated his condition. As a result, he suffered a paralytic stroke and died. He is considered one of the most influential composers of all time. Corelli, Archangelo (1653-1713) Archangelo Corelli was born in Fusignano, Italy in 1653. He was a violinist who composed concerti grossiand trio sonatas. His composition style is considered very typical of the Baroque period. A distinguishing feature of Corelli is that he only composed music for instrumentalists. His compositions were among some of the most popular pieces of the time period. His music was richly spirited and had a touching and refined melodic sense. Handel, Georg Friedrich (1685-1759) Born in the year 1685, George Friedrich Handel became the second most prominent composer of the High Baroque era. He was second only to J.S . Bach. Handel composed sonatas, concertos, operas, and modern oratorios. He helped develop the modern opera and modern oratorio form further, while his sonatas and concertos made great use of his melodic techniques. A famous
song from the oratorio Judas Maccabeus, is "Sing Unto God." Another famous work that is recognized world wide is the "Hallelujah Chorus" (from the Messiah) which is also written in oratorio form. Monteverdi , Claudio (1567-1643) Claudio Monteverdi was born in Italy in 1567. Monteverdi is most famous for his contributions to the early operatic form. He was an Italian composer of opera, sacred, and secular music who was ahead of his time in musical technique. As the Medieval era was a very conservative time in music, Monteverdi went against the grain. He felt that rules should be broken when they had to be, especially if it was in the interests of meaning and expressiveness. Monteverdi was very interested in new musical techniques. Far advanced for his time, he employed a complete orchestra as opposed to using a few instruments which played the same part. This yielded a crude polyphony, much unlike the typical sound of the time. Monteverdi taught the viol section of the orchestra to play with bows instead of plucking strings. He further introduced tremolo and pizzicato to the strings. Monteverdi had a hard time explaining to the violists that they had to play a single note sixteen times in rapid succession. When he suggested plucking strings pizzicato to the violists, they almost revolted against him At age forty, Monteverdi composed his first opera, called Orfeo. This was an instant success, as it was written expressively and dramatically. His second opera, Arianna, received just as much, if not more, praise for being emotionally overwhelming. A lament in Arianna, called "Lasciatemi Morir" often moved the audience to tears. Other famous works of Monteverdi's are his operas Il Ritorno d'Ulisse in Patri, L'incoronazion di Poppea, and Il Combattimento di Clorinda. He died at the age of seventy-six but left a lasting impression on the musical world, one that would change the face of music forever. Purcell, Henry 1659-1695 Throughout his life, English born Henry Purcell composed music in all forms and styles. He is most known for his lively trumpet voluntaries and sweet vocal airs. He was also a composer of multiple forms, such as court, church, stage, and chamber music. At age six he became a choirboy in the Chapel Royal. When his voice changed at age fourteen, he then became the "keeper, maker, mender, repairer and tuner of the regalls, organs, virginals, flutes, and recorders and all other kind of wind instruments, in ordinary, without fee, to His Majesty (Kaufmann, 103)." By the time Purcell was fifteen years old, he was paid two pounds (or ten dollars) a year to tune the organ in Westminster Abbey. By age twenty, he became organist of Westminster Abbey. Additionally, it was his job to compose music for the King's violins. This task helped him to attain an audience for his organ works, songs, and instrumental compositions. Some of Henry Purcell's more famous works are A Song to Welcome Home His Majesty from Windsor and They That Go Down to the Sea in Ships. Dido and Aenas is his only surviving opera. This opera contains the powerful musical pieces "Lament" and "When I Am Laid in Earth." It is still performed often today. His last anthem, Thou Knowest Lord, the Secrets of our Hearts, was so emotionally written that it was played at the funeral of Queen Mary. Six months later, this piece was performed in Westminster Abbey at Purcell's own funeral. Today he is remembered as one of the greatest composers who ever lived and is known for his exceptional and pleasant use of harmonies. Rameau, Jean-Philippe (1683-1764) Born in 1683, Jean Philippe Rameau became one of the greatest French theoreticians of all time. He broke the rules on harmonic practice of the time, and suggested new forms through his music. The Nouvelles Suites Allemande, Courante, Sarabande, and Gavotte written for the clavecen clavecendisplay some of these new principles. He was courageous in his philosophies, inventive in terms of harmony, and had an extreme command of orchestration. He
was always interested in adding new effects, such as storm scenes, and choruses into his music. Vivaldi, Antonio (1680-1743) Antonio Vivaldi was an Italian composer who was well known as a violinist and composer of solo violin concertos. He had a different musical philosophy regarding composition. He felt that the soloist and orchestra should be in musical conflict with one another, (similar to the give and take that happens when two people are speaking to one another). He is believed to have composed over 750 works of music. He set precedence by adding drama and strong rhythm to basic harmonies. Vivaldi previewed what was to become the sonata-allegro form and the typical sound of the 18th century. One Of Vivaldi's most famous works is the Four Seasons, a four part concerto. Each section is named after a season. "La Primavera", "L'estate", "L'inverno", and "L'Autunno".
The Classical Era (1750-1820 C.E.) Although the Classical Era lasted for only 70 years, there was a substantial change in the music that was being produced. Classical music placed a greater stress on clarity with regard to melodic expression and instrumental color. Although opera and vocal music (both sacred and secular) were still being written, orchestral literature was performed on a much broader basis. The orchestra gained more color and flexibility as clarinets, flutes, oboes, and bassoons became permanent members of the orchestra. The classical style was dominated by homophony, which consisted of a single melodic line and an accompaniment. New forms of composition were developed to adapt to this style. The most important of these forms was the sonata which was in instrumental music. This form continued to change and evolve throughout the classical period, and it is important to note that the classical sonata was very different from the sonatas written by Baroque composers. The early 1700s reflected a musical style known as Rococo. This style served as a transition from the Baroque to the Classical Era. Rococo, which developed in France, is actually an art term that described a new art style which was both a light and embellished. Musically speaking, it is refered to as style galant. In Germany, after 1750, the style galant became empfindsamer stil. With this change in name came an added element of expressiveness and sentimentality. As classical music evolved, distinctive characteristics developed. Changes in form were seen along with changes in phrase structure. Shorter phraases and well defined cadences became more prevalent. During this time period, a favorite accompaniment pattern was the Alberti bass (name for Dominico Alberti), which featured a broken chord progression. The melodies of the Classical era were more compact and diatonic. Harmony was less structured. It used the tonic, dominant, and subdominant chords. In addition, during this period, diatonic harmony was more common then chromatic. Composers mainly used chords in triadic form and occasionally used seventh chords in their compositions. The four major composers of the Classical era were Haydn, Mozart, Gluck, and Beethoven. These composers wrote extensively for vocal and instrumental mediums. The Classical Era VOCAL While the instrumental works of the Classical era were grandiose, the vocal works of the time did not make much of an evolution from thos eof the Baroque era. There are a few important key changes in concepts that occured, however. Opera With the Classical Era came both the decay and subsequent reformation of the
Italian opera seria, or serious opera. Its once dramatic and emotional presentation had evolved into a showy and artificial art form. Although many musicians of the time realized the tragic decline of the opera seria, change took place slowly. To try and restore the opera seria to its former greatness, composers made certain changes in their writing styles. While not everyone agreed upon or employed these changes, many of them can be found in some of the operas of the late 18th century. According to Hugh M. Miller, the following were some of the changes tha occured in opera during the 18th century: 1. Melodic recitatives with orchestral accompaniment were favored over Secco recitatives 2. Solo singers began to lose some of their autocratic domination over opera performance and ostentatious virtuosity was less evident 3. Choral ensembles were used on a much more frequent basis 4. There was a greater concern for the dramatic aspects of peras, as therehad been in the past and less concern given to formal music aspects 5. The orchestra was no longer just used for accompaniment and expanded in size and nature 6. Chains and arias were not the only structures used as composers made operas more dramatic by using different techniques 7. Rigid da capo arias appeared less frequently as they gave way to more diversified forms. (127) During the same time, the comedic opera began developing. This type of opera was in sharp contrast to the opera seria. It catered more to the people who wanted to "revolt" against the more serious and dramatic opera. Religious Music For the most part, after Handel mastered the oratorio, it died out as a musical form. Few oratorios of consequence were composed after Handel. During the late 18th century, any oratorios that were still being performed appeared to be almost identical to operas. Some oratorios went so far as to be staged and acted while the performers wore costumes. It is also important to note that Haydn’s oratorios during the Classical era closely resembled Handel's earlier oratorios. Church music now resembled operatic music more than ever before. Almost all composers of church music during the Classical era also composed operatic music. Massesbecame operatic styled pieces of literature for the orchestra, the solo voice, and the chorus. Duets and arias even resembled operas; the only feature that distinguished them from opera was their texts. During the Classical era, some Baroque characteristics still remained in place in sacred music. Fugual choruses and basso continuoparts remained virtually identical to those in the Barqoue era.
The Classical Era (1750 - 1820 ) Instrumental Music During the Classical Era, many changes in instrumental style took place. The classical sonataevolved a great deal during the period. Sonata form was the basic structure in which composers wrote instrumental music. Sonata form was applied to solo sonatas, chamber music, symphonies, and concertos. Musical compositions of this time contained three or four movements, each with its own special characteristics. The first movement of a Sonata was called the sonata-allegro. It consisted of three sections: 1) Exposition: This section presented the main theme of the movement in the tonic key. The theme then transitioned by a bridge and modulated to the dominant key, or relative major key if the movement was in a minor key. The second theme was presented in the dominant key. This section concluded with a closing theme or codetto.
2) Development: This section used the material from the exposition which the composer "developed" and expanded. Motives were presented in various keys, registers, and groupings of instruments. In this section the composer also used new themes that were not found in the exposition section. The composer ended this section in the tonic keyand moved directly into the recapitulation. 3) Recapitulation: The recapitulation was a restatement of the exposition but with all subsections remaining in the tonic key. In the second movement of a sonata, there were three specifications that usually occured. It was written in a slow tempo, in a contrasting key (usually the subdominant or dominant), in relation to the whole work. Additionally, this movement was more lyrical than the other movement. The third movement in the classical sonata was called the menuettoor minuet. Like the other movements, this one also had special characteristics. It was written in a moderately fast tempo, played in the tonic key, and was written in three-four. The minuet had three sections: minuet, trio, and a repeat of the minuet. In a sonata with three movements, the minuet was left out or omitted. In some of Haydn and in most of Beethoven’s works in sonata form, the third movement was called a scherzo. It utilized the same aspects of the minuet, but was more humorous in nature. Sometimes the two middle movements were reversed, so that the minuet came second and the slow movement third. In a three movement composition, the minuet or scherzo was omitted. The fourth movement, or finale, also had distinct characteristics. It had a lively tempo, was played in the tonic key, and was usually played in sonata-allegro form. THE SYMPHONY Another important form of instrumental music was the symphony, which blossomed during the 18th century. The basic form of the classical symphony was the Italian overture, called sinfonia. It was an orchestral composition arranged in three movements (fast-slow-fast). Instrumentation commonly found by the end of the 1700's included: 1. Four woodwind instruments in pairs (flutes, oboes, clarinets and bassoons) 2. Trumpets, horns, and timpani in pairs 3. String choir with first and second violins, violas, cellos, and string basses Orchestration utilized the following: 1. The strings remained the most important sound in the orchestra. 2. Themes were played by first violins. 3. Harmonies were usually played by second violins and violas. 4. Cellos and basses were doubled, however, the basses sounded an octave lower. 5. Brass instruments, without valves, were only used in tutti passages and played harmonies, instead of main thematic material. CONCERTO The Classical solo concerto was similar to that of the Baroque but differed in the style and structure of movements. The Classical Concerto followed the fastslow-fast formula, but omitted the minuet movement, thereby containing only three movements. First Movement The first movement was written in sonata-allegro form, but had two separate expositions. The first exposition introduced principal themes by the orchestra in the tonic key. The second exposition had a solo instrument convey the theme in a more brilliant and showy style. In the next stage the composer developed and expanded these musical ideas. At the conclusion of the development section, recapitulation began. At this point, the composer restated the main themes of the movement. Near the end of recapitulation a cadenzais played. This cadenza was freely improvised in a virtuosic manner. During the 1800s, cadenzas were usually written out beforehand by composer or performer. Second Movement The second movement was written in a contrasting key. It utilized a slow tempo and was stylistically more lyric then the first. This movement is the least virtuosic movement of all three.Third Movement The third movement was written in rondo form. It had a lively tempo, and was stylistically lighter then the other movements. Sometimes a cadenza was added.
CHAMBER MUSIC Chamber music was its own distinct musical entity, very different from the orchestral medium. It was composed for a very small ensemble with only a few members and with only one instrument to a part. It was at its height in music literature during the Classical era. Divertimento Divertimento was composed for various media, such as small chamber ensembles and small orchestras. It had three to ten movements, which included minuets, dances, standard sonata-form movements, and marches. This music was meant for outdoor and informal performances. It was less sophisticated than symphonies. Haydn wrote over 60 divertimentos, and Mozart wrote more than 25. String Quartet String quartets were the most popular chamber medium of the Classical era. They were made up of one cello, two violins, and a viola. They were written in 4 movements, using the Classical sonata form. Other Chamber Music Music was also written for mixed quartets, which used three string instruments and one additional instrument (usually oboe, clarinet, piano or flute). There was also music written for string trios, mixed trios, string quintets, and mixed quintets. Keyboard Music Solo Sonatas for piano or harpsichord were important during the Classical era. Well known composers of this style were Karl Philipp Emanuel Bach, J.C. Bach, and Wilhelm Friedemann Bach. Additionally, Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven also wrote piano sonatas. he Classical Era Composers
Beethoven, Ludwig Van (1770-1827) Of German descent, Ludwig Van Beethoven was born in 1770. It has been said that Beethoven and his music are the bridge between the Classical and the Romantic eras. Beethoven had a difficult child-hood; he was often angry and frustrated, but he also had a wit and personal charm about him. He was self-educated and rose above his tribulations to become one of the greatest composers of all time. Beethoven's music experimented with new rhythms, and he composed music based on an idea, as opposed to a full rhythm. His works were composed for quartets, concertos, symphonies, and piano sonatas. To some, Beethoven is regarded as the father of modern music. It is often said that Beethoven's music contained his own struggles for both political and personal freedom. His defiant plea for these freedoms can be heard somewhat in his Fifth Symphony, and wholeheartedly in his Ninth Choral Symphony, and in his opera Fidelio. He put an extreme amount of emotion into all his works. Beethoven's music is recognized around the world. He composed nine symphonies and pieces such as Fur Elise, and Moonlight Sonata The musical career of Beethoven can best be viewed in three different phases. In the first period of his musical career, he composed his First and Second Symphonies, Opus 18, six string quartets, and the first fifteen of his thirty two piano sonatas. In the second or middle stage of his career, Beethoven began to build on Classical works, bringing them to a new level of expressiveness. In this stage he composed his Third Symphony, also known as Eroica. This piece was both longer than his other two symphonies and was so dramatic and emotional that it would change the symphonic form as the musical world knew it. In his third and last stage, Beethoven was at his most creative, and he explored music further then he had ever done before. In his final piano sonatas and string quartets, Beethoven abandoned traditional form, while still keeping his own original sound. It is said that his musical defiance is due in part to his deafness which isolated him from society. Beethoven's music remembered today for its unique quality and for its defiance. His
new styles bridged the Classical and Romantic era and brought the musical world from the old into the new. Beethoven was also the first composer to ever be appreciated by the public within his own lifetime. Thanks to him, great musicians of their time would recieve the credit they were rightly due. Gluck, Christoph Willibald (1714-1787) Christoph Willibald Gluck was of Bavarian heritage and was a writer of the operatic form. Gluck spent ten years of his life in Italy, where although his operas were not highly acclaimed or noteworthy, they were successful. On one occasion, he played one of his Italian operas in London. It was not well received because Handel was the dominating composer of operas there. Handel commented behind his back "Gluck knows no more counterpoint than mine cook (Kaufmann, 55-56)." Gluck eventually reformed his style and applied classic Greek principles to the Italian operatic form. His new operas showed growth and were full of drama, emotion, genuine orchestral accompaniment, powerful choruses, and dignified melodies and arias. By his fortieth birthday, Gluck had written twenty operas. Gluck wrote the now famous operas Orfeo ed Euridice, Alceste, Paris and Helen, Iphigenia in Aulis and Armide. Gluck's new style was hailed as modern, innovative, and almost revolutionary. Christoph Willibald Gluck made the operatic composers of the era seem "old hat". One critic is quoted as saying, "If the Greeks had had a musician, they would have had Gluck (Kaufmann, 56)." Haydn, Franz Joseph (1732-1809) Austrian born and raised, Franz Joseph Haydn began his musical career as a choirboy in Vienna. While at school, scribbling music on paper became a favorite pastime of his. A man named Count Furnberg became the first patron of Haydn. Under the Count, Haydn played string quartets and composed his first eighteen quartets. He then went on to be a music director to the Count Morzin. At this time, he composed his Symphony No. 1, which was followed by over a hundred more. He then spent thirty years with the family of Prince Paul Anton Esterhazy. During those years, he composed five masses, forty string quartets, sixty symphonies, thirty clavier pieces, one hundred and five cello trios, and many different types of works for funerals, weddings, birthdays, and other celebrations. Symphonies No. 44 "Allegro", "Allegretto", "Adagio", "Presto", and No.104 1st mvmt., 2nd mvmt., 3rd mvmt., 4th mvmt., are among his more popular works. Some of Haydn's most famous pieces are the Minuet of the Ox, the Rasierquartet, the Kaiserquartett, The Creation and The Seasons. Furthermore, Franz Joseph Haydn is known as the father of the string quartet. Mozart has been quoted as saying, "From Papa Haydn I learned all I know about string quartets." He added extra instrumentation into the orchestra and sang his music with all his heart. Haydn is regarded today as one of the greatest composers in all of music history. Mozart, Wofgang Amadeus (1756-1791) Austrian born, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was regarded to be the greatest child prodigy the world has ever known. At age four, he heard his older sister playing a harpsichord minuet. Mozart begged his father to let him try the piece, and by ear, he played the piece perfectly. Throughout his life, tragedy struck. He was one of the most talented composers ever to walk the face of the earth, yet he led a life filled with much unhappiness. Upon traveling to Italy, Mozart fell in love with the Italian opera. One of his most famous peras is The Escape from the Seraglio, in which the heroine was named after his wife Constanze. Although many of the people in Vienna greatly praised this opera, Mozart's patron, Emperor Joseph, was not a fan of the style. Even though Mozart had his streaks of bad luck and his family was often in debt, his marriage to Costanze held many moments of happiness. On Sunday mornings, Haydn and two other musician friends from Vienna would show up at Mozart's residence and would play string quartets. Haydn is quoted
as telling Mozart's father, "I declare to you upon my honor that I consider your son the greatest composer that I have ever heard (Kaufmann, 67)." Mozart composed many operas of which his most loved are The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni, and Cosi Fan Tutte. His last opera, The Magic Flute, has charm and intelligence, even though it was written when he was sick and depressed. Ironically, during the same year that he wrote his last opera, a stranger approached Mozart and asked him to write a Requiem Mass. Although the stranger's motives and identity were unclear, Motzart began writing the Requiem Mass that was requested. When it was half finished, Mozart's sickness took a turn for the worse, and he died. The Requiem Mass would be his last composition. When he died the piece included (including Requiem Aeternam, Kyrie Eleison, Dies Irae, and Confutatis, Lacrimosa. Although he only lived to age 35, Mozart is regarded as a prominent musical genius.
The Medieval Era (800 - 1400 C.E.) The Medieval Era is the longest and most remote period of musical history. It is important to note that this musical era consists of almost a thousand years worth of music. For most of the middle ages, the Church was the focal point of social life, learning, and the arts. Saint Gregory, who was pope from 590 - 640 C.E., is said to have organized a huge repetoire of chants that developed during the first centuries of the Christian church. Thus the term of "Gregorian Chant" came about. Early Medieval music notation did not look like the notation that is used in present day music. The earliest signs of a notational system notational system for music used neumes. For a long time, musical notation consisted of the pitch or note that was to be sung. Other musical notation, such as rhythm didn't begin until the 12th or 13th centuries. Gregorian Chant is monophonic, having one melodic line without an accompaniment. It is said to be very serene, with pure shapes of melody. It is not known who wrote the melodies of the Gregorian Chant. Similar to folk melodies, it probably changed over time as it was passed down through generations. Toward the latter part of the Middle Ages, music consisted of two or more melodic lines that were heard simultaneously, called polyphony polyphony. This appeared around the 1200s. Polyphony was more difficult to compose than the monophonic chant, because a composer had to combine multiple melodic lines in a way that would be pleasing to the listener. Most of the Medieval polyphonic music was anonymous, as the names of composers were never written down. However, there are a few exceptions, as some composers had works so important that their names were preserved along with their music. Although little of it has been preserved, secular secularsong was important to the medieval era.. Secular song was monophonic and stylistically more diversified than plain song. It was stronger, and utilized regular rhythms, and had short rhythmic patterns. It was generally modal but favored major (Ionian) and minor (Aeolian) modes. THE MEDIEVAL ERA VOCAL SECTION During the Medieval Era, there were many forms of vocal music. They were very simplistic in nature. FORMS Plainsong One of the most common vocal forms of the time was called plainchant, the Gregorian chant, or plainsong. It is known that this form of vocal music was the main root of polyphony during both the Medieval era and in the Renaissance era. Secular Song While little secular song had been preserved to date, it was still a very important musical form during the Medieval era. It was very similar to plainsong in that it had single note notation, had no accompaniment, and was written in the
monophonic style. The difference between secular song and plainsong was its meter. It was mostly written in triple meter. Additionally, it also dealt with a wider range of subjects than the very religious plainsong. Furthermore, secular song had clear phrase and sectional structure , was written in most vernacular languages instead of the Latin-only plainsong, and used shorter and more regular rhythms. Polyphony One of the greatest musical achievements in the history of music occurred during the Medieval era. This was the coming of polyphony. Polyphony is two or more vocal parts, each with its own individual melodic importance within a work. The earliest known polyphony occurred in secular music of the 8th century. However, from the 9th to the 13th centuries, polyphony grew in style and popularity and evolved into church music, which was based on plainsong. ARS ANTIQUA Ars Antiqua is the time period between the mid 1100s to the end of the 1200s. This phrase means "The Old Art." This was a time during the Medieval Era when polyphony developed even further. Notre Dame Organum The Notre Dame organum developed shortly after the year 1150. In this form of polyphony, there were two parts sung by solo voices, alternating with sections of plainsong sung by a choir. Appearing for the first time was dicant style. This style had sections in which the tenor part contained shorter and measured notes. Polyphonic Conductus The polyphonic conductus was in wide usage during the beginning half of the 13th century. The tenor part of this musical form was composed, instead of borrowed from plainsong, as it was in organum. Additionally, the parts moved together rhythmically, and the piece was written for two to four parts. The polyphonic conductus was composed in non-liturgical or secular form. Motet Around the year 1250, the motet became the main polyphonic form. It started to replace organum and conductus. A motet consisted of specific musical guidelines. A plainsong was sung by the tenor voice, and above it, two other parts were sung in faster moving notes. It was written in either sacred or secular style (in Latin or in vernacular) and usually was played in triple meter with clashes of dissonant intervals. Hocket Hocket was a form of polyphony that was often found in the music of the late 1200s To the 1300s. It was a technique that interrupted the melody line by frequently placing rests (which alternated between two voice parts) into the piece. Rota Although not many works had this form during the Ars Antiqua stage of the Medieval Era, the rota still was present. It was a round or cannon in which two or more parts carried the same melody at different times. Rondellus The rondellus was a three part, secular form, in which exchange occured between the three different melodies. This polyphonic work involved all the parts starting together rather than starting consecutively. Each part then rotated the melody. ARS NOVA The Ars Nova, or "The New Art," took place during the end of the Medieval era while foreshadowing some of the Renaissance trends that were to ome. Madrigal Written in two vocal parts, this musical form was the first polyphonic form to appear in Italy. The madrigal had each stanza written in duple time and ended with a ritornello section in triple meter. Caccia The caccia was at its musical height from 1345 to 1370. It was the primary musical form that employed the canon within it. The canon was based on a continuous imitation of two or more parts. The two upper parts were sung in strict imitation with long intervals between the two parts while the third lowest part was composed in slow moving notes and was probably played on an instrument. Ballata This form came about after the madrigal and the caccia and originated as a dance song. The ballata had a sectional structure with refrains, called ripresa sung at the beginning and end of
each stanza. The Medieval Era (800 - 1400 C.E.) Instrumental Although very little instrumental music has been left intact from the composers of the time period, it is a well known fact that instruments were used throughout the Medieval era. INSTRUMENTS Bowed Instruments The most important of the bowed instruments were the vielles. They were the precursors of the Renaissance viol family. Another bowed instrument used during the medieval times was the rebec, which was a pear shaped instrument. Later in the time period the tromba marina appeared. It was long in shape and usually had one string. Sometimes it had two strings that were tuned in unison. Plucked Strings The most important plucked string instrument was the lute. It had an angled neck and a pear shaped body. The psaltery, a flat sounding board was another instrument similar to that of the zither. Wind Instruments During this time period recorders, various kinds of trumpets, and horns were in use. The shawm, which was a double reed instrument, was also used. Organs In the Medieval era, portative organs or organetto were used. They were small and were able to be moved around. The positive organ was a very important instrument of the time period. It was the first organ for which polyphonic music was composed. It was of medium size and could not be moved. During the 1300s larger organs started to appear usually in the churches of Europe. Some of them had up to 2,500 or more pipes. Percussion Instruments Drums came in many different shapes and sizes and were used mainly for military and dance purposes. Kettledrums, also called nakers, were used in pairs during this time period. In addition, a cylidrical drum, known as the tabor, was used. Many kinds of bells and cymbals were also used during the Medieval era. During the Middle Ages, composers were not all that concerned with how their written music was performed. They gave little notice to what instrument(s) would play a piece and never indicated particular instruments within their scores. It is believed that there were basically five ways in which instruments were employed during this period in music history. According to Hugh M. Miller: 1. Vocal polyphony was occassionally played entirely by instruments 2. Instruments were used to double one or more vocal parts 3. Textless parts in polyphonic music were probably intended to be played by instruments as, for example, in 13th century motets and 14th century cacce and ballate. 4. Music clearly intended for instrumental performance was mainly dance music and a few instrumental motets and conductus. 5. They may have been substituted for voices in one or more parts with texts Dance Music Almost every single one of the preserved dance forms were written in monophonic style. Folk or court dance music was made up on the spot or played from memory. The principal dance form of the 1400s was the estampie. This dance form had many repeated sections and was almost always played triple time. Some other famous dances were the danse royale and the Italian saltarello and istanpitta from the 1500s. The ductia was also a popular dance that was written in three or four sections. The finale of a dance work was named a rotta, rotte, or rota, and involved a change of meter involved. The Medieval Era Composers
Dufay, Guillaume (1400-1474) Guillaume Dufay composed music from the late Medieval era into the early Renaissance. He was born in the Duchy of Burgundy, which is today known as Cambrai, located in France. His birthplace was one of the major musical centers of the world. This area influenced many of the composers who lived during the Renaissance. Throughout his life, Dufay resided in many different Italian cities, which brought a high degree of worldliness to his music. The music of Dufay was very calm, soothing, and had direction and clear distinctions. This was in opposition to the typical music of the late Medieval era, which was often harsh and rhythmically complex. As time progressed, and musical norms started changing, so did the music of Guillaume Dufay. He began to explore the music of four voice vocal texture, which became a distinct Renaissance musical characteristic. He was one of the catalysts who helped Medieval music to move forward and transition into the Renaissance age. de Vitry, Phillipe (1291-1361) Phillipe de Vitry was one of the most important composers involved with Medieval music. He was the author of a prominent music theory text, called the Ars Nova. In this work, he showed how he would like to expand the rhythmic resources offered to composers, introduced new rhythmic schemes and a new mensural notation system. This new system remained an important notational device for over a century after his death. He made the first use of binary rhythm and is thus considered to be a mathematical and philosophical genius of his time period. Additionally, he is credited with being one of the main developers of the motet. He is one of the first composers to discover and use isorhythm; a single rhythmic figure continually repeated by a voice. The only surviving works of Phillipe de Vitry were his motets. They are mostly secular, although some took on religious tones. Most of his motets were on political, as opposed to romantic, topics. He wrote his secular pieces in Latin, instead of French. He was seen as a prodigy, as he wrote about the issues of his time period and put them into musical form. Vitry is hailed today for his music theory that spurned the whole Ars Nova era of the Medieval era and for his own emotional motets. He used new modes of musical idiom that would not be refined until years after his death. He left a lasting impression on the musical world. de Machaut, Guillaume (1300-1377) Born around the year 1300 in France, Guillaume de Machaut was one of the most famous composer of the Medieval era. His most well known work is the Mass of Notre Dame. Written in four voice form, this piece showed his mastery of composition, and served as a textbook example of Medieval counterpoint. He was also well known for his French poetry, songs, and manuscripts prepared for French royalty. Guillaume de Machaut travelled Europe during his lifetime. In addition to composing, he also was involved with the political events of the time. He surrounded himself with royalty and honorary people. Guillame de Machaut is considered to be an avant garde composer. His style dominated the Ars Nova period of the Medieval Era. He made little changes to rhythm and meter in his music but added his own interpretation and emotional depth to his pieces. He was also famous for his poetry, which was often set to music and conveyed messages of love.
The Modern/20th Century Era (1900 - Present) With the coming of the 20th century another evolution in the musical world emerged. While some of the early 20th century music can be seen as extensions of the late Romantic style, much of 20th century music can be seen as a rebellion. Composers did not look to build on what was standard but again created music freely and used sounds that went against the current grain. Twentieth century music can be described as being more refined, vague in form, delicate, and having a mysterious atmosphere. Twentieth century music is an era that is hard to define in terms of musical style. The only easy way to define 20th century music is that it does not fit into the Romantic era's requirements. And because of its own expression and orchestral technique it does not fit into any other category but its own. This time period spawned many new terms for musical styles because of the diversity of music that was being written. Some common examples are atonality, expressionism (seen in Schoenberg's early music), neo-Romanticism, andneo-Classicism Neo-Classicism. As was true in the Romantic era, nationalism nationalismwas still an important musical device used during the first half of the 20th century. Composers utilized folk songs to enriched their music. Examples can be seen in the music of Raplh Vaughan Williams (England), Bela Bartok (Hungary), Heitor Villa Lobos (Brazil) and Aaron Copland (USA). Jazz and popular musical styles influenced composers from both the United States and Europe. In 20th century musical styles traditional forms and structures were broken up and recreated or composed using non-Western musical techniques and abstract ideas. Technology also became an extremely important factor in the music making during this time period. Composers have been known to use recording tape as a compositional tool. Electronically created sounds are used in combination with other electronic sounds or played together with traditional music instruments. Most recently, the use of computer technology has affected the world of music making. Some ways in which computers currently alter the face of the music world are by manipulating the performance of instruments in real time. The Modern/20th Century Trends Throughout the twentieth century, many trends developed. These trends permeated all the different areas of music and did not specifically happen at a given point in time or take on a strict form. Some of these trends were incorporated together into the same piece of music. The twentieth century broke all the musical rules of the past and let one form and style flow right into another. It is still important to note that although much change came with the turn of the century, Romantic music continued throughout this era, and remained the dominant form for quite some time. Impressionism Impressionism was the very first trend of significance which moved away from Romanticism and towards Modern era characteristics. Though this type of music was programmatic, it still started the movement away from the Romantic era. Impressionistic music was vague in form, delicate in nature, and had a mysterious atmosphere to it. Expressionism Although not as important as Impressionism, Expressionism was a prominent early twentieth century movement. Stylistically, expressionistic music was very atonal and dissonant. It was a German movement away from French Impressionism. It was emotional and had a somewhat Romantic feel to it. Neo-Classicism Neo-Classicism Neo-Classicismcan be defined as the new classical movement. This movement started in the early 1920s and continued to be a leading musical movement throughout the century. This trend is still popular today. NeoClassicism is a movement which incorporated the music of the Classical era, in terms
of clarity of texture and objectivity. This trend not only based its music on the Classical era, but it also mixed Renaissance, Baroque, and some modern trends in with it. Jazz Jazz is a musical movement which dominated the 1900s. It is mainly an American form and remains popular to this day. Jazz can be defined as anything from popular music of the twentieth century to the improvised sounds of a dance band. Some prominent forms of Jazz throughout the century have been Ragtime, Blues Blues, Swing Swing, Dixieland Jazz, Bop, and Boogie-Woogie. Since the second half of the 1900s, new forms and techniques of Jazz have come about. These include funky hard bop regression, cool jazz, progressive jazz, and rock and roll. Generally these newer styles have a greater range in harmony, rhythm, and melody, and are less oriented to dance music. They also sometimes borrow techniques and forms from classical music, and vice versa, as modern classical music often contains Jazz elements. Aleatory Music or Chance Music Aleatory music is an extremely random style of music. The composer and/or the performer will randomly pick musical materials and make it into a piece of music. There are no rules to this form of music, and, thus, any kind of music can be created as a result. After the composer writes a piece in this unusual style, the performer then improvises on it, to make it stranger and more unique. Some techniques involved in aleatory music are having the audience improvise along with the performer, using electronic or computer media, or reading poetry somewhere inside of the work. Electronic The newest trend of the twentieth century lies in electronic music. Electronic music takes electronically generated sounds and turns it into a work of music. Like conventional music, electronic music has four general properties to it. These are amplitude, pitch duration, and timbre. Electronic music is typically composed on either a synthesizer or a computer. The most current trends in this form of music show electronic music in combination with Jazz.
The Modern/20th Century Techniques During the Modern era, many new musical techniques emerged. They were seen in melody melody, harmony harmony, rhythm, meter, texture, tonality, and sonority sonority. It is important to note that during the twentieth century not all changes in music were a revolution or a return to old ideals. Meter and Rhythm Few changes occurred to the concepts of meter and rhythm during the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras. For the first time in hundreds of years, rhythm became a more important factor and took on characteristics of flexibility and variety. New Time Signatures - Refers to odd time signatures, such as 5/8 and 7/8, are found in modern music. Asymetrical Grouping - This is a grouping of notes within a measure to yield new rhythmic effects. Non-metric Music - For non-metric flexibility, composers omit the bar line, this is limited to solo media. Polymetric Music - This is music in which two or more meters are used simultaneously. Multimetric Music - In this type of music frequent changes of time signature occur almost every measure. Displaced Bar Line - This is a technique to make the barline seem as if it is misplaced or shifted. To do this, accents are put in recurring patterns to counter the normal accents in the measure. Melody During the 1900s, new changes to melody occured in the areas of style, scale
bases, and the role of melody. Style Melody in music has generally remained traditional throughout the Modern era, but there have been exceptions as some extreme forms of melody have occured. Scale Bases New melodic and harmonic styles appear during this era, as a result of the use of unconventional scales. Composers have borrowed scales from old church modes and have used them in a neomodal settings. The Role of Melody Up until the twentieth century melody was the most important element in any work of music. Now, the role of melody has greatly changed. It is still important in music with contrapuntal contrapuntaltexture, but its importance is greatly diminished in music having great emphasis on harmony and rhythm, and virtually nonexistent in some forms of electronic music with nontonal sound. Texture Contrapuntal textures in music dominate the Modern era. While, homophonic homophonictextures are present, it is to a lesser degree and with less importance. Texture is especially evident in neo-Classicism neo-Classicism, where contrapuntal forms from the Baroque, such as the cannon cannonand fugue fugue, are used. Sonority Sonority of the modern era takes on the characteristics of being thin, clear, and transparent. This resembles music of the Classical era, thus showing once again the importance of neo-Classicism in the twentieth century. Pointillism, a very thin sonority is also present in this modern era. It involves fragmentary lines, a combination of various tones sounding simultaneously, frequently changed timbres, and widely spaced registers. Serialism & Twelve Tone Music Serial music is based on a repeating series of rhythms, dynamics, tones, or timbres in a work. This form first appeared in the 1920s and relates to new concepts of formal structure in music and atonality. Twelve tone music is a form of serialism that is based on a series of twelve different pitches called a tone row. A tone row contains all twelve tones of the octave arranged in such an order that any implication of tonic or key center is avoided. Melody, harmony, and themes are derived from the tone row, which replaces scales as the basis of composition. The Modern/20th Century Composers
Bartok, Bela (1881-1945) Bela Bartok was a famous Hungarian composer who transcribed Hungarian folk songs and also wrote his own orchestral, opera, ballet, and chamber music. Stylistically, he mixed his innate musical talent along with his intellectual skill to create his mastery of modern form. His most famous works are the Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion, Concerto for Orchestra, and Mikrokosmos. Britten, Benjamin (1913-1976) Born in 1913, Benjamin Britten was an English composer. He wrote music in choral, orchestral, solo vocal, and operatic styles. He is also well known as being a significant composer of opera. He used various themes from American, Japanese, and British cultures in his works. His most famous opera is Peter Grimes. Britten was very opposed to war, and this can be seen in his War Requiem, which was a statement about his ojection against militarism. Bernstein, Leonard (1918-1990) Leonard Bernstein was one of the most influential composers of the 20th century. He was a virtuoso virtuosopianist, a television star, a gifted conductor, a businessman, and a classroom teacher. Bernstein was first inspired by music when, at eight years old, he heard music played in his first trip to a synagogue. He was moved to tears by the choir and the organ sounds. He would never be the same again, and the musical world can be thankful for that. He learned
how to play the piano, and continued playing and performimg for the rest of his life. Composer Serge Koussevitsky gave him positive encouragement and helped him to become a successful conductor when he was only in his twenties. Some of the famous groups that he conducted were the New York Philharmonic, The New York City Symphony Orchestra, and the Boston, St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Israeli orchestras. Some of his well known works are the symphony Jeremiah and Serenade for Violin Solo, String Orchestra and Percussion. His compositions Masque and Turkey Trot are known for being very lively and rhythmic. He is also known for his ballet Fancy Free, his musical, On the Town, and his opera Candide. Copland, Aaron (1900-1990) The composer Aaron Copland was born in 1900 in Brooklyn, New York. His personality often clashed with his musical compositions, as he was a quiet and soft-spoken man, while his music was loud, brilliant, and tense. As a child, he studied the piano and music theory. When he was old enough to leave home, he traveled to France to further immerse himself in the musical world. There he made his first business mistake, as he sold a short composition of his, The Cat and The Mouse, for twenty-five dollars. Thousands of copies were sold and he did not receive and royalties from the song. Copland returned to New York after his education in France. While back in the United States, he composed his famous Symphony for Organ and Orchestra. He went on to become the director of many musical foundations such as the International Society for Contemporary Music, the League of Composers, and his own foundation. Copland was very interested in educating people about modern music. He gave concerts with fellow friend and composer Roger Sessions. These Copland-Sessions concerts, served to educate audiences about the new and dissonant music that he and Sessions composed. He was also the director of the Berkshire School of Music in Tanglewood, Massachusetts after the great conductor Serge Koussevitzky died. Some of his most famous works are Lincoln Portrait, a large orchestral piece with text from the Gettysburg address, and Appalachian Spring, which was a Pulitzer Prize and Critic's Circle of New York winning ballet. Additional songs for which he is known are Hoedown and Simple Gifts. Copalnd was an extremely versatile composer and composed music for choruses, orchestras, theater, and chamber music groups. It is a special honor of his that he was one of the first major composers asked to write a piece of music for a radio broadcast. Additionally, he wrote the scores for the films The Heiress, The City, Our Town, and Of Mice and Men. His compositions for film are emotional and have also been performed in concert halls. Aaron Copland retired from composing music in 1965. This was due to the fact that younger composers were ignoring him, and the general public did not receive his newer works very well. Among these works that were ignored by the public was Inscapes, one of the great postwar American scores. From then on, Copland focused on a conducting career, specializing in his own scores. Gershwin, George (1898-1937) American born composer George Gershwin was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1898. He was a composer of both pop and concert music. As a child, Gershwin learned about music by playing the piano. At age sixteen, he received additional piano practice at a job where he played popular song hits all day long. He began to compose and play some of his original works but was largely ignored. Eventually, Gershwin took a job as a rehearsal pianist at a Ziegfeld production. At this point in his life, he wrote his first musical comedy, La La Lucille, which turned out to be a hit. From then on he rapidly turned out Broadway successes. These were the famous Oh Kay, Strike Up the Band, Girl Crazy, Funny Face, Of Thee I Sing, Lady Be Good, and George White's Scandals. These scores contained songs that the country would grow to love, full of popular music and touches of early rock and roll. Soon after, George Gershwin produced another one of his most famous works, Rhapsody in
Blue. This was a jazz piece written as a form of art. This whole philosophy was very new to the public, and yet they instantaneously fell in love with this piece. It was performed in concerts, broadcast on radio stations, and recorded and distributed in high volume, making it a well-known musical composition throughout the world. After Rhapsody in Blue, he composed two very famous compositions, American in Paris and the Cuban Overture. Porgy and Bess was George Gershwin's last important composition. This was a grand opera folk opera written about the African American Southern culture. The all-African cast was so important that it was hailed as the first completely successful and completely American opera. It was written so emotionally and dramatically that members of the cast could not believe that the opera's composer wasn't at least partially African American. Porgy and Bess exemplified the skill and talent that George Gershwin possessed. Tragically, Gershwin died at the young age of thirty-nine due to a cancerous brain tumor. His legacy continued on and Gershwin's music is still influential today, making him one of the most important composers of the twentieth century. Ives, Charles (1874-1954) Charles Ives was born in 1874 in Danbury, Connecticut. He learned about music from his father who was the lead member of the town band. At Yale he took a course in music, but rather than use conventional notation, he invented his own musical alphabet. Ives' unusual philosophy certainly did not make him a conservative musician. From 1906 to 1930, when he retired, Ives was a businessman at an insurance company. From that point on he focused wholeheartedly on his music. Throughout his life, he tried not to miss a musical affair in his hometown of Danbury. He attended performances by the town band and played the organ in church. When he wrote music he incorporated the sounds he heard in town performances into it, faults and all. Some typical characteristics of his music were off-key singing, squeaky and out of tune violin playing, and the wheeze of the harmonium. Ives wrote his music in a manner as cryptic as its sound. His score would have notes jotted all over the page with no bar separations and strange chords, rhythms, and quarter tones. One of his most famous works, written in this style, is his second sonata sonatafor the piano, entitled Concord, Massachusetts. This was arranged into four movements known separately as "Emerson," "Hawthorne," "The Alcotts," and "Thoreau." This piece brought out the spirit of Concord in the middle of the century, and was hailed for its power and display of emotion. Another popular piece of Charles Ives' was his Symphony for Orchestra and Piano. Charles Ives was certainly one of the most influential, original, and unique composers of the 20th century. He died at eighty years of age, leaving eleven volumes of chamber music and six volumes of orchestral scores, most never performed. He was only semi appreciated in his lifetime, but the world today now appreciates his importance to the world of music. He was innovative, well ahead of his time, and risky and bold in his musical experimentation. Ives and his music are studied today for their freshness and daring. Stravinsky, Igor (1882-1971) Igor Stravinsky was born in Russia in 1882. His earlier works, such as his symphony No. 1 in E Flat, showed the old school Romantic musical style of Russia. However, Stravinsky began to turn away from this style of music and progressed towards the music of Claude Debussy, while adding a Russian flavor to it. Some of the works he completed in this new style were The Faun and the Shepherdess, Fireworks, and the major ballet Firebird. In these compositions, clean orchestral textures, irregular rhythms, and emphasis on stamping were used. Two additional ballets written in this style were Le Sacre du Printemps and Petrouchka. These works were less Romantic and had more of a barbaric feeling to them. Eventually tiring of this style, Stravinsky decided to search for a new style of music once again. In this transitional peroid, he wrote the opera Le Rossignol, and
Symphonies for Wind Instruments. After World War I, he moved further away from his fiery ballets by composing Tango, Ragtime, and L'Histoire du Soldat. These new scores were less aesthetically pleasing but used more objectification. At this time, he also reworked the old masterpieces of Pulcinella and Oedipus Rex. This style was called neo-Classicism neo-Classicism, which was a return to classical music with modern day elements added in. Stravinsky is regarded as the most influential modern composer in both France and America. His most famous Neoclassicist works are the Concerto for Two Solo Pianofortes, the ballets Apollo and Jeu de Cartes, Symphony in Three Movements, Symphony in C, Ebony Concerto, Mass, Symphony of Psalms, and the classic full length opera, The Rake's Progress. After Stravinsky finished The Rake's Progress he moved away from neo-Classicism and towards the serial music style. His most famous works in this category were Movements for Piano and Orchestra, Cantata, In Memoriam Dylan Thomas, Three Shakespeare Songs, Threni, Introit, The Dove Descending Breaks the Air for chorus, and Requiem Canticles. Stravinksy was a multifaceted and talented man who left an impression still burning on the musical world today. Vaughn Williams, Ralph (1872-1958) Ralph Vaughan Williams was born in England during the year 1872. Composers influenced in the musical style of Brahms were his musical mentors. His earlier music showed the influence of Brahms, yet they also has Williams' unique and original sound to them. Throughout his life, he was fascinated by the English folk song. Vaughan Williams had the unique talent of being able to absorb musical techniques and styles from other composers while still remaining true and original to himself. Composers who influenced him were Stravinksy, Bach, Brahms, Byrd, and Debussy. His earliest compositions were French impressionist music, such as his In the Fen Country, and String Quartet No. 1. He soon changed his musical style to incidental music. In this format, his famous works were The Wasps, the song cycle On Wenlock Edge and Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. Vaughan Williams was a composer in almost every category of music. He wrote a few of operas, none which had success on stage, even though they were filled with artistically pleasing music. His other major musical compositions were Hodie, Merciless Beauty, Serenade to Music, 10 Blake Songs, Five Mystical Songs, Dona nobis pacem, and Sancta Civitas. All of his symphonies show Ralph Vaughan Williams' wide range of style and form, each piece having a truly unique sound. His music was always original and unique, with much drama and emotion.
A light breeze flowing across the Jamuna river mingles with a lonely voice. The musician recites a line from a Sufi poem -- it could be Amir Khusrao. The words float high above, supported only by a harmonium. Then a chorus of four others echoes the melody. Someone picks up the dholak, another begins clapping to the beat. Gradually, the singing gathers momentum and a gathering of devotees, mesmerised, starts swaying to the music. Cut to Lincoln Centre, New York. An orchestra makes its entry on stage and is applauded by the couple of thousand people seated in the magnificent air-conditioned auditorium. A rotund man puts one hand to his ear, raises the other evocatively and begins singing. Within minutes, hordes of people -- from Punjabi taxi drivers to punky Asian teenagers -- are dancing maniacally in the aisles. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan took qawwali from the anonymous marble shrines of India and Pakistan into the global music circuit of fusion and pop. The intermediate phase could
perhaps be seen as a combination of genuine improvisation and unabashed greed. But though part of the outcome was great -- like the soundtrack for The Last Temptation of Christ (where he teamed up with Peter Gabriel) and Bandit Queen -- much of it was not agreeable to many, and infuriating to some. In his early avatars, however, the Lahore musician treated his listeners -- indeed overwhelmed them -- with his renderings of qawwali. Not surprising, for Nusrat came from a family of well-known qawwals. A recently released four-part recording of traditional Sufi qawwalis (performed live in London in December 1989), with a strong base in classical music, provides a glimpse of the asli cheez -- music which elevates the spirit, bringing both the performer and listener closer to God. In fact, contrary to what flashes on MTV or Channel V, qawwali was essentially spiritual music. There are various levels of interaction between religion and music, explains Ashok Ranade, well-known musicologist. You have litturgic music that accompanies rituals -- like the ubiquitous aarti -- and mystic music where there is a one-to-one relationship between the singer and God -- like the chanting of mantras. And finally, you have the public version of mystic music -- like the qawwali or bhajankirtans which, by definition, are sung in a place of worship. "Indeed, there is a direct parallel between bhajans and qawwali," says Ranade. He explains the characteristics common to both which are used to attract devotees. In both forms, you have the soloist juxtaposed with a chorus. The chorus reinforces the message in the music by constantly repeating a phrase, embellishing and emphasising it. And in both cases, the music is sung to a compelling rhythm -- always fast -- which immediately engages the audience. The drumming is supposed to merge with, and eventually take over, the heartbeat. "By enhancing the message of mystical poetry, and by providing a powerful rhythm suggesting the ceaseless repetition of God's name (zikr), the music of qawwali has a religious function: to arouse mystical love, even divine ecstasy, which is the core experience of Sufism," writes Regula Burckhardt Qureshi, in her authoritative book on Qawwali, Sufi Music of India & Pakistan. The term 'qawwali' can be traced back to the ancient Arabic music forms Kaul and Kalbana. A Kaul or Qaul, literally meaning "aphorism", is a song in Arabic. Qawwali translates into 'utterance'. Interestingly, although Islam has a vast following all over the world, qawwali is only sung in India and Pakistan. Ranade suggests that when missionaries of Islam came to India, they found that music was an integral part of religion. So the qawwals flocked and thrived here, drawing heavily from the north-Indian tradition of Hindustani classical music. A qawwali typically begins with an instrumental prelude on the harmonium, outlining the melody. Then the qawwal sings the introductory verse and finally he is joined by his chorus. Traditionally, it remained loosely within the parameters of a raga, and was considered a lighter genre of classical music. "Over the years, north Indian 'classical' music has been limited to mean khayal -- and maybe ghazal," suggests Shama Zaidi, scriptwriter. "Allied forms like qawwali, or even the tappa and thumri, were not considered classical." It is not surprising, therefore, that qawwalis were marginalised and gradually copied by Bollywood and Bhendi Bazaar. "What else do you expect?" questions Zaidi. Among the first Hindi films to take qawwali out of the religious context and into popular cinema was R Chandra's Barsat Ki Ek Raat (1959). Interestingly the song, Na To Caravan Ki Taalaash Hai, was inspired by Nusrat's father, Fateh Ali Khan.
Being a participative form of music, it gradually became popular and eventually vulgarised. As Raju Bharatan, an authority on Hindi cinema puts it, "By the '80s, music lost its relevance because action came into play." The characters in films would wear colourful scarves and topis, clap their hands and sing vapid songs that were passed off as qawwali. The poetry on which qawwali was based also lent itself to corruption. It was the easiest thing to translate the Sufi verses describing metaphysical love between man and God into mundane love between a man and woman. "Qawwali music became a medium for sexual wrestling matches of sorts," says music director Naushad wryly. "A male singer sat across from a female singer, and they competed with each other, singing rhyming lines like Tera Mukhda Nainital and Tere Haat Mein Hai Rumaal. Zaidi recalls an incident in the '60s, when the late Urdu poet Niaz Haider heard Shakeela Bano Bhopali, a popular qawwal, performing at a numaish in Aligarh. Two light bulbs in her bosom flashed to the beat of the song. He was so incensed that he stormed up to the stage, publicly admonished her for insulting qawwali, and ripped out the microphone. Today, apart from the anonymous fakir-musicians who perform at remote dargahs, there are only a few artistes --the Sabri brothers of Pakistan, Jafar Hussain from Delhi and Baroda's Noor Jehan, for instance -- who are still singing the authentic qawwali. And heart-felt outbursts such as Haider's have degenerated into colourful anecdotes about eccentric traditionalists, while the music continues to fade out.