Music history questions

timer Asked: Mar 14th, 2015

Question description

  1. What historical circumstances may have led to the spread on the Continent of English music and musical style? 
  2. What political conditions aided the rise of Burgundian musicians to prominence in the fifteenth century? What kinds of musicians were employed by the dukes of Burgundy? How did music at the Burgundian court influence music across Europe? 
  3. What were the principal polyphonic genres in the mid-fifteenth century? 
  4. Why is Binchois significant to our study of Western music? 
  5. Write out the musical form of Binchois’s De plus en plus (NAWM 35). List the other titles of works in NAWM (and their composers) that use the same form. 
  6. Describe the melodic style of the top voice and treatment of the text in Binchois’s De plus en plus. How do these traits differ from Machaut’s style as seen in Rose, liz (NAWM 28)? 
  7. What type of cadences does Binchois use in De plus en plus? Where do parallel fifths and octaves occur? Where do vertical sonorities of sixths and thirds appear?
  8. Briefly summarize Du Fay’s career. How was it typical of musicians of his era? How did his life facilitate the creation of an international style? 
  9. How does Du Fay use the tenor of his chanson Se la face ay pale (NAWM 38a) in the tenor of the Gloria from his Missa Se la face ay pale (NAWM 38b)? How is this like isorhythm? How does it provide a form for the Gloria movement? 
  10. Where in the Gloria does Du Fay borrow material from the other two voices of his chanson? What purpose might this borrowing serve? 
  11. How do the four voices of the Gloria differ from each other in function and style?
  1. What important books or treatises did Johannes Tinctoris, Gioseffo Zarlino, and Heinrich Glarean write (that you know of)? What significant ideas did those books contain, and when were they published? 
  2. What were the new approaches to text setting in music of the Renaissance? How do these approaches embody ideals of humanism? 
  3. When did printing of polyphonic music from movable type begin? Who was the first printer to use this technique, and where was he active? Name his first publication and characterize the kind of music it contained. Describe the usual format for printing ensemble music in the sixteenth century. 
  4. Summarize the musical careers of Machaut, Du Fay, Ockeghem, and Josquin des Prez, emphasizing each composer's major musical contributions with mention of examples from relevant works in your required anthologies, NAWM and NRAWM.

For this written assignment, you'll categorize the required study pieces from NAWM as to form and comment on how each represents its form. The objective of this assignment is to confirm your understanding of the characteristics of each of the vocal forms and instrumental categories used during the sixteenth century.

  1. Identify the form of selections 55–61, 63, and 64 from NAWM. For each selection, indicate how it conforms to or deviates from the form you have identified.
  1. Identify the category for instrumental selections 66 (a, b, and c) and 70 from NAWM (see pp. 141-142 of CHWM). For each instrumental selection, specify how it fits its category, and cite any characteristics the composer includes to make it unique.
  1. Describe the specific characteristics of Luther's chorale and how it was used in the Protestant service. Then describe a present-day religious song style that reflects similar characteristics and functions as those of the chorale.
  2. Identify specific characteristics of Palestrina's compositional style. Then describe how Byrd’s Agnus Dei (watch and listen to theYouTube video listed under Study Materials) reflects the influence of Palestrina’s style.
  1. Define the following terms, and explain the significance of each concept.
    • basso continuo, or thoroughbass
    • continuo instruments
    • figured bass
    • realization (of a basso continuo) 
  2. Study and listen to NAWM 74(a–e), excerpts from act 2 of Claudio Monteverdi’s opera L’Orfeo (1607). How does Monteverdi use dissonance, rhythm, melodic contour, and other elements to convey the meaning of the text and the feelings it reflects in Orfeo’s recitative Tu se’ morta (NAWM 74d)? 
  3. In Orfeo, Monteverdi uses particular musical forms and styles to convey the changing dramatic situation and the feelings of the characters. What characteristics make each of the following forms and styles appropriate in building and expressing the drama of this scene?
    • Orfeo, canzonetta (NAWM 74a)
    • Messenger, Shepherd, and Orfeo, recitative (NAWM 74c)
    • Orfeo, recitative (NAWM 74d)
    • Chorus, choral madrigal (NAWM 74e)
  1. In her cantata Lagrime mie (NAWM 77), Strozzi uses a variety of singing styles ranging from recitative to aria to something between (arioso). Indicate the measure numbers at which those changes in style occur and briefly describe the character of each section. Why do you think Strozzi chose to use the singing styles in this order? What about the structure of the text and its meaning may have influenced her compositional choices? 
  2. How does Schütz use changes of texture and style to depict the events and text of Saul, was verfolgst du mich (NAWM 81)? What types of style and texture does he use? 
  3. Complete a list of the new forms of vocal music described in Chapter 11. Briefly describe the characteristics of each form and provide an example of each from NAWM.
  1. What main types of instrumental music were practiced in the seventeenth century? 
  2. What is an organ mass? What was the function of toccatas in the Catholic Mass? 
  3. What was a sonata in the sixteenth century? How was the term used in the seventeenth century? 
  4. What role did toccatas, preludes, and chorale preludes play in the Protestant church? 
  5. Where and in what position was Dietrich Buxtehude employed for most of his career? What types of music did he compose for use in that position? 
  6. How does Buxtehude’s Praeludium in E Major (NAWM 95) fit the definition of a late seventeenth-century toccata or prelude given in CHWM, page 215? What type of texture and figuration does it use? How does it fall into sections? 
  7. a. What are agréments, and what is their purpose? 
    b. Define and describe style brisé (broken stye). 
    c. On what instrument did style brisé and agréments originate, and why were they necessary on that instrument? 
  8. What is a stylized dance? How do we know that Denis Gaultier’s La Coquette virtuose (NAWM 87) and Jacquet de La Guerre’s Suite No. 3 (NAWM 88) are stylized? 
  9. What two main types of sonata began to be distinguished after about 1660? Describe each type as practiced by Corelli. 
  10. What was the most common instrumentation for sonatas in the late seventeenth century? What was a sonata in this instrumentation called? 
  11. What is a collegium musicum? What are Stadtpfeifer? Where and when were each of these institutions active?
  1. The aria “Sì, sì ben mio” from Scarlatti’s cantata Clori vezzosa, e bella (NAWM 92b) follows da capo aria form. Give the primary harmonic areas for each of the following sections: 

    a.  A section, opening ritornello (mm. 51–54) 
    b.  A section, first vocal statement (mm. 54–59) 
    c.  A section, middle ritornello (mm. 59–60) 
    d.  A section, second vocal statement (mm. 60–73) 
    e.  B section (mm. 74–87) 

    How does da capo aria form reflect the form of the text? 

  2. What characteristics of the overture to Lully’s Armide (NAWM 85a) mark it as a French overture? 
  3. How does the musical setting of Armide’s recitative “Enfin il est en ma puissance” (NAWM 85b) reflect the dramatic situation and the emotional conflict Armide is feeling? 
  4. How was England’s musical culture different from France’s in the Baroque period? What accounts for that difference? 
  5. Describe the differences in the function and character of music in Orthodox Lutheran services and Pietist Lutheran services.
  1. In which city and for what institution did Antonio Vivaldi work for most of his career? Describe the institution’s purpose, the role of music in it, and Vivaldi’s role.
  2. In what ways does Couperin’s La Visionaire (NAWM 97a) resemble a French overture? 
  3. How does Rameau use the chorus in his opera Hippolyte et Aricie (NAWM 98)? How does the chorus interact with the other characters? 
  4. In what ways do Bach’s melodies in both the fugue and the prelude (NAWM 100) show the influence of Italian violin style? Use the solo violin portions of Vivaldi’s op. 3, no. 6, first movement (NAWM 96), for comparison. 
  5. Describe the Lutheran church cantata. What was the text like? What was the music like, and from what traditions did it draw? 
  6. Identify the functions of the chorus, recitative, and aria in a typical opera or oratorio. Describe how NAWM, items 103a, 103b, 103c, and 103f, fulfill these functions.

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