Pierre Monteux
An orchestra conductor who conducted the premier of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. He was born in Paris France and later became an American citizen. He became a proficient violinist at an early eage and later took up the viola.
Ode to Joy (an Die Freude in German)
It was written in 1785 by the German poet and historian Friedrich Schiuller. It is especially known for its musical setting by Beethoven in the 4th movement of his 9th symphony for four solo voices, chorus, and orchestra. It was adopted as Europe’s Anthem by the European Union in 1972.
This term refers to the musical decoration of a pitch by means of an additional rapid and generally nonmetrical pitches. A very common example of ornamentation is heard in the trill. Decorative notes of a short duration added to compositions to emphasize certain notes and to add flavor to the composition. Ornamentation has been used htrough all periods of music in Western tradition but they are particularly prominent in the late Renaissance, Baroque and Classical eras. Ornamentation is not limited to specific instruments, but may be performed on almost any instrument, including the voice.
Performance Practice
Performance practices refers to the methods chosen in performing a work of music. This may refer to choices in tempo, rhythms, instruments and number of singers, etc. The term is applied to musical techniques employed in specific musical genres during specific musical eras. Quite often, performance practice refers to techniques that are implied and not written or notated. Some examples would include using vibrato in some forms of jazz. Although not always notated, certain styles of jazz expect the use of vibrato.
This describes a musical texture where the musical lines move in different directions from each other and at different points in time. Fugues are a good example of polyphony, but they are by no means the only kind of music to generate this texture. A style of composition that has many voices, ecah with is own melody creating a rich texture of sound. Polyphony is a musical texture consisting of several independent melodic voices, as opposed to music with just one voices (monophony) or music with one dominant melodic voices accompanied by chords (homophony)
Presto (Italian)
A musical term indicating a fast tempo. A directive to perform a certain passage of a composition very quickly. This command can be found throughout the score of Beethoven’s 9th. A tempo marking that instructs the performer to play fast.
Millicent Hodson
Gave a reconstruction of Le Sacre for the Joffrey Ballet did much to give an idea of how the dancing must have appeared. He had the dancers turn their toes not out but in, keeping the knees together to jump on straight legs and to repeat many of the same motions over and over, just like Nijinsky did.
An impresario is a manager or producer in one of the entertainment industries, usually Music or Theater. Impresario also refers to the director of an Opera Company.
March to the Scaffold
This is the fourth movement in Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique and he cared about every detail of it. He put great emphasis on his orchestra, even to the way they held their sticks. Once the march is underway one can hear outrageously low, rasping sounds from the trombone. These notes are ipossible to play quietly and are very rarely called for. This is probably their first use in the history of symphonic music. The idee fixe, a gentle clarinet solo, does not appear until just before the fall of the blade of the guillostine and this is the last time that the idee fixe is heard in its original form.
Camille Moke
The eighteen year old Moke was a teacher of piano in Madame d’Aubree’s school for disabled young women, where Berlioz taught guitar. It was Camille who reported Berlioz the comprising information about Harriet Smithson that provoked his rage. Moke became engaged to Berlioz after he won the Prix de Rome, but married the piano manufacturer Camille Pievel while Berlioz was absent in Rome.
Vaslav Najinsky
He was a Polish born Russian ballet dancer and choreographer of Le Sacre du Printemps. Thought to be among the great male dancers in history, he became celebrated for his virtuosity and for the depth and intensity of his characterizations. He could perform en pointe, a rare skill among male dancers at the time and his ability to perform seemingly gravity defying leaps was also legendary. Nijinsky created revolutionary movements in his shows, moving away from the traditional flowing movements of mainstream ballet. His radical angular movements combined with heavy sexual overtones caused a riot in the Theater de Champs Elysees when Le Sacre du Printemps was premiered in Paris.
This refers to the genre of music that is a combination of vocal and instrumental music. Its subject matter is dramatic, often Biblical, but htere are neither sets scenery nor costumes. It employes many of the musical forms of opera: aria, recitative and chorus.
Typically 2 violins, 1 viola, 1 cello who plays composition written for four insturments. In The Silent City this was adapted to include a Persian instrument, the kamanche, and the tuning for the conventional isnturments foudn in a quartet was an altered A minor sclaed to better include the kamanche.
Also known as a reprise, the section of a piece in sonata form in which the musical material of the exposition is replayed so that it ends in the home key. Sonata form consists of three sections, the exposition, the development and the recapitulation. The composer introduces the musical themes in the exposition, works with them in the development and restates them, with some changes in the recapitualtion. An example of recapitulation is the final portion of the first movement of Beethoven’s ninth symphony.
Literally means little return in Italian; section of instrumental music that returns repeatedly between other contrasting sections, functions as a refrain that punctuates a vocal passage, setting up an organizational framework for a larger form; example: the ritornello that recurs between La Musica’s verses in the Proloque to Orfeo
Friedrich Schiller
Wrote “An Die Fruede” (Ode to Joy), the words used in the vocal portion of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony movement IV; German dramatist, poet, and historian, one of Germany’s greatest literary figures, greatly influenced other poets of German romanticism
An instrumental introduction, often multisectional, of a vocal work; often not bearing much of a connection to the piece, it is used in Handel’s Messiah as an overture to the oratorio as a whole
Henriette Sontag
At 18 yrs old sang the solo soprano part in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony; perhaps the most famous soprano of the period, went on to a very successful international career, a favorite of Beethoven
Ballets Russes
was a ballet company established in 1909 by the Russian impresario serge Diaghilev and resident first in Paris and then in Monte Carlo. It created a sensation in Western Europe because of the great vitality of Russian ballet compared to what was current in France at the time. It became the most influential ballet company in 20th century and that influence in one form or another, has lasted to this day. Stravinsky’s Sacre du printemps was put on by the ballet Russes’ company
Is the use of only two different keys at the same time. A prominent example of bitonality is found in the rhythmic and harmonic superimpositions of the opening chords to the “Dance of the Youths and Maidens” Stravinsky’s Sacre du printemps.
The ferry driver who drives the dead in Hell across the river. In act 3 of Orfeo, Orfeo tries to convince Caronte to take him over to the other side. Caronte tells him that only the dead can cross. Orpheus sings and charms Caronte into a deep slumber which enables Orpheus to cross the River Styx.
For Orfeo, a chorus is: a piece for several different voice parts. They choruses like the duets and trios in Orfeo are both homphonic and polyphoni. For Messiah: 1) A composition that calls for the simultaneous singing of more than one vocal part. 2) The group of people who sing this kind of music. In Messiah there are three basic types of choruses, anthem, fugue and duet.
Col legno
An unusual technique of playing stringed instruments in which the players turn their bows upside down to strike the strings with the wood rather than with the hair, producing a clicking sound.
Danse Sacrale
The final section of Stravinsky’s Sacre du Printemps. This section is important because one of the young adolescent girls is chose to and dances herself to death.
Idee fixe
A fixed idea that dominates the mind like an obsession. Significant in Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique as a melody associated with “her, or just the thought of her”–for Berlioz himself, the obsession was with the actress Harriet Smithson. The idee fixe returns throughout the piece, but was composed and played two years before Symphonie Fantastique and there is thought that the recycling of musical material weakens the narrative.
A flourishing city-state in Italy where Monteveri’s L’Orfeo was premiered. Vincenzo Gonzaga was the reigning duke in 1607 and indeed did much to cultivate the arts, though it was his eldest son Fracesco who was the driving force behind the composition and performance of LOrfeo. There is evidence that qualified singers in mantua fell short and Monteverdi sought outside help to round out his cast. At the time there were female singers in Mantua but they were not allowed to sing in the Academy.
defined as the number of pulses between reuglarly recurring accents. Generally noted as either duple or triple, meter can change the whole character of music. For example, marches are set in duple meter and dances in triple.
Renaissance dance inbinary meter. The moresca is probably observed a the end of Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo when the shepherds and nymphs dance following Orfeo’s ascent into heaven with his father, Apollo
Berlioz’s symphonie fantastique is one of ht emost famous works that uses the ophicleide. Literally meaning keyed serpent, the ophicleide is part of the family of keyed bugles (brass) invented in the early 1800s. It has long tubing that bends back on itself and has nine keys which cover the large tone holes. It was the structural cornerstone of the brass section of the Romantic orchestra, replacing the outdated serpent from the renaissance period.
Deliberate upsetting of the meter of a composition by temporary shifting of the accent to a weak beat or off-beat. Stravinsky uses tremendous syncopation in “The Dance of the Adolescents” at the beginning of Part I to create a wild irregular rhythm.
Also known as kettledrums and belong to the percussion family. Timpani solos are used int eh second movement, the Scherzo, of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. Two trumpets with kettledrums are also used in four choruses in the Messiah. The timpani of Berlioz’ time were smaller than those today, creating a more percussive and less long-lasting sound. Stravinsky also used piccolo timpani and four timpani.
The bass instrument of the brass family. It has valves, a wide bell, and a conical bore (the tube). Stravinsky uses two tenor tubas and two regular tubas. The tenor tubas were played by two horn players in a great crescendo for the procession of the Elders.
Caroline Unger
Contralto soloist for the premiere of Beethoven’s 9th symphony. “Less delicate and more down-to-earth” than Sontag and somewhat unstable. She had just begun her operatic career in Vienna and was to gain prominence. Had some trouble with her part but worked hard. Beethoven said to her about a difficult high note, “Just learn it! The note will come!” Might ahve been the one to turn Beethoven around to see the audience’s applause.
Kiss of the Earth
The ritual kissing of the earth by the eldest member of the tribe at the end of the first part (“The adoration of the earth”) to Stravinsky Le Sacre du Printemps. A mystical chord played on string harmonics marks the actual moment of the kiss in the ballet.
A genre of music for orchestra that arose in the early eighteenth century. By the end of the 18th century the typical symphony had four movements: 1. a fast movement usually in sonata form 2. a slow movement, often theme variations 3. a dance movement, either a minuet or a scherzo 4. a lively finale, often a rondo
highly contrapuntal type of composition, where one theme is repeated adn elaborated in multiple voices during the course of the composition. This is used in Handel’s Messiah as a chorus. Exposition, subject, episode
a class of instruments that produce sound when the player blows through a reed or across an aperture. An early woodwind instrument heard in Monteverdi’s Orfeo is the recorder. Woodwind instruments in the modern symphony orchestra include the flute, the oboe and its relative the English horn, the clarinet and the bassoon.
Ornamentation of a pitch that entails a rapid alternation between the indicated pitch and the pitch above ie
The speed of a piece of music, generally understood as the frequency of the beat.
Un Bal
the second movement of Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique. This movement takes a rather plain waltz theme, similar to the idee fixe at first and then transforming to it in a single starting moment. It is filled with figures that run up and down and this movement is meant to portray a single lonely soul amidst gaiety, according to Berlioz.
De Capo Aria
ABA. tripartie musical structure. Second time A is stated there are more embellishments on A. but who may abide is a good example
This is the middle section of a movement in sonata form in which elements of the two contrasting themes presented in teh exposition are developed in a variety of new and different ways.
Dissonance is the term for notes which dont sound good together; it is the antonym of consonance. The term refers to the effect produced by two or more notes sounded together or in immediate succession, when the combination is judge to be unstable or unpleasant. Basically anything tense.
English Horn
An English horn is basically a giant oboe. It is a woodwind instrument and has a double reed. It has a lower range and a darker sound than an oboe. Berlioz uses the English horn in the third movement to evoke the mournful sound of the shepherds’ pipe.
The opening section of a movement in sonata form in which two contrasting thmes are introduced, the first in tonic key, the second in the dominant.
This is a standard form of the Classical and Romantic period and consist of three sections: The exposition states two contrasting themes, the first in the tonic key, the second in a different key from the tonic. This section ends with a large cadence in the new, non-tonic key. The development follows the exposition. This is where teh composer explores the themes introudced in the exposition, re-working them through varied melodic, harmonic, or rythmic treatment. The recapitulation often re-introduces the two themes of the exposition, both which are now played in the tonic key. Often, the recapitulation is followed by a coda.
Folk Music
In popular usage, this term refers to music of oral traditions, often in relatively simple style, primarily of rural provenance, normally lacking an identifiable composer and performed by non-professionals, used and understood by broad segments of a population and especially by the lower socioeconomic classes, characteristic of a nation, society, or ethnic group, and claimed by one of these as its own.
A family of musical instruments played by striking their surfaces. Percussion instruments are used to accentuate and dramatize certain notes or rhythms and incldue instruments such as cymbals, durms, triangles and xylophones. Percussion is used in almost every piece but is particialy notable throughout the Symphonie fantastique and the rite of spring as being key elements in the musical program. In both cases the timpani is the key percussive instrument. In Symphonie Fantastique the timpani is so important in movement IV The march to the scaffold that Berlioz has notes in the score to the percussionists on how to hold their sticks. In the sacrificial dance at the end of rite of spring, the timpani is responsible for driving the tempo faster and faster.
a performance for stringed instruments that tells the player to pluck the string with the finger rather than the bow. This plucking may be done with either hand. It produces short unconnected notes. An example can be found at the end of the introduction to the first part of the Rite of Spring where a short ostinato produced in the string section using pizzicato. The pizzicato gives the part a sense of pulse. It can also be found in the 3rd movement of Symphone Fantastique.
The simultaneous use of more than one key at the same time. An example can be found in the sixth part of the Rite of Spring (The Procession of the Sage) where there are two keys being played in the brass at the same time.
Program Music
Insturmental music of the 19th and 20th century that endeavors to arouse mental pictures or ideas int he thoughts of the listener–to tell a story, depict a scene or impel a mood. It is so called because it relies on a program or explanatory text or narrative to explain the story behind the music. The symphonie Fantastique is a good example of how program music can change by simply changing the story of the textual aid.
Francesco Rasi
He was a mantuan singer (range of tenor and baritone), poet and composer, with a famous reputation throughout northern Italy for his musical excellence during the early 1600s. He was regularly employed in teh performances at the court of Mantua as a singer and held a remarkably elevated posistion in the court for such a musician. Rasi played the title character of Orfeo in the premier of Monteverdi’s opera. Monteverdi must have had Rasi in mind while composing the parts for Orfeo because of the range he used in the notes and the virtuosity that would be needed to sing them.
The rhythm of a passage of music is the pattern created by the timing and duration of musical events. For example, to describe the rhythm of a melody is to specify the temporal position and length of each note in relation to every other note. Rhythm is a fundamental parameter of music so that altering rhythm may profoundly affect the chracter of a passage. Topics related to rhythm are presented in teh following other entries: meter-the organization of rhythm. tempo-the speed at which a passage of music is performed. Long short short rhythm of first theme, first movement, Beethoven.
A stress or special emphasis ona beat to mark its position in the measure; The principle of regularly recurring stresses which serve to give rhythm to the music.
Directive for a musician to play a stringed instrument with a bow as opposed to plucked or pizzicato.
Basso continuo
Italian for continuous bass. ever present bass part in music, played by at least two instruments: the low string cello or viola de gamba which plays a single bass line and a harpsichord or lute that can improvise harmonic accompaniment
Melodic or harmonic configuration that creates a sense of repose or resolution, occurs at the end of a phrase, period or complete composition.
A male singer who was castrated during boyhood to preserve the soprano or alto vocal register, prominent in 17th and early 18th century opera. This practice was sanctioned by the Vatican because women were not permitted to sing in the church.
Any music or chord that contains notes not belonging to the diatonic schale. Music which proceeds in half steps.
An artistic movement that began in 1830 with the performance of the dram Hernani. It broke previous boundaries and emphasized exotic subjects, the supernatural, the Middle Ages and passion. Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique
A short musical pattern that is repeated at successively ascending or descending pitches.
standard form of the classical and romantic period and consists of three sections, the exposition states two contrasting themes, first in toinc key and second in a diff key than tonic ending with large candence; the development where composer explores themes; the recapitulation which reitnroduces the themes in the tonic key, followed by a coda.
Spring Rounds
Fourth section of the Adoration of the Earth in Le Sacre du Printemps. Also known as the Round Dance
Theater de Champs-Elysees
Elegant theater in Paris built in 1913, where the Rite of Spring was performed. It was the first theater made of reinforced concret and was designed by August Perret and Henry Van de Velde.
this refers to the first note of any given scale, tonic of c major is c, most important note in a scale, excerting a certain aural “gravitational pull” on the rest of the notes in the scale
Estelle Fournier
eigtheen year old woman with who 12 year old berlioz became infatuated. the melody played by the violins in the slow introudction to the first movement of symphonie fantastique was composed while longing for her; he remembers her for her pink half-boots
a symbol appearing over a note or rest, instructing the performer to extend its duration; the length of time is at the discretion of the performer
gabriel astruc
managed business matters for stravinsky’s premiere; managed diaghilev’s concerts and ballets in paris for six years beginning in 1907, conceived and constructed the Theatre des Champs Elysees, shouted for quiet during the premiere
a type of musical texture with all voices and instruments moving at roughly the same time with the same note values; the melodic focus is usually concentrated in one voice while others provide accompaniment
charles jennens
librettist for messiah, arranged text from the bible and service text from the church of england. he was unsatisfied with the messiah because he thought his work deserved better music; theologian and reverand
a series of pitches sung to one syllable of text, creating the meaning of the word as in word painting; only voices can have melismas; examples-ornamentation on the word shake
Recitativo is a musical declamation for solo voice, used in opera and oratorio for dialogue and for narratio. Recitativo accompagnato specifically refers to a declamation that has the accompaniment of strings or the entire orchestra along with the voice part. It has more ornamentation than Recitativo Secco, but not as much as an Aria or Arioso. Recitativo Accompagnato and Arioso can be very difficult to separate due to their many similarities.
A female singer with a high voice 2)a register that is a span of notes within the range of all possible notes of the four registers, soprano is the highest, henrietta sontag.
ancient bass instrument made of wood and snakelike in shape; its brass mouthpiece and fingerholes make it a hybrid of the brass and woodwind families. it was used in french churches to accompany plainchant, and berlioz used it to accompany dies irae in songe dune nuit
Nicholas Roerich
painter for Le Sacre du printemps. He had the reputation of being an expert on slavic folklore and history because he studied Slavic architecture with the Russian Archeological society. He also studied art in Paris and was featured at the Salo d’Automne in 1906 in an exhibition on Russian art (put on by Diaghilev). Previous to Le Scre, he desgined sets and costumes for Diaghilev and for the Moscow Arts Theater. He worked closely with Stravinsky on the costumes and backdrops for Le Sacre
Harriet Smithson
Shakespearean actress, berlioz fell desperately in love with her and this was his inspiration for the narrative of the Symphonie Fantastique. He ended up marrying her and had an unhappy marriage.
means obstinate in Italian. A short musical pattern (rhythmic, melodic, harmonic, or some combination) repeatd persistently throughout a passage. four note pizzicato ostinato played by the strings in the second section of hte Dance of the Adolescents in Le Sacre.
This is a term unique to Messiah. It is an instrumental piece that evokes a pastroal mood and uses many isntruments. It serves to divide part I into two distinct sections. Often this movement is performed with mutes, providing a distinct instrumental color. The string parts move in parallel motion and in octaves above a droning bass with long held pedal tones. The title Pifa surely comes from teh Italian piffaro, a woodwind instrument and pifferi, a shepherds bagpipes. Handel uses only stringed instruments here. contrasts with sinfonia
means many rhythms. The simultaneous use of two or more rhythmic patterns of rhythmic groupings. In Le Sacre this is done by combininng different patterns but notating the parts in the same meter.
Prix de Rome
The highest honor France could bestow on a young composer, necessary for an artist who wanted to make their mark in France; Berlioz won it in 1830 at age 27 after failing to win it several times. Sent young painters, sculptors, architects, engineers ,and composers to villa Medici in Rome for two years. Also included 3 thousand francs anually for the next three years. composers locked in a room for 25 days with the lyrics to a cantata that they had to compose for voice and orchestra. pieces evaluated by a jury of academie des beaux-arts and the winning cantata was performed with orchestra at a formal prize giving ceremony in the institut de france. in the core he submitted that he won the prize, but he left out the great conflagration scene which he really wanted to end the cantata with
Marie Rambert
Dancer in Le Sacre; Helped Najinsky teach the choreography
Turkish March
a variation of ode to joy theme in the final movement of beethoven’s ninth. has a heroic military sound and serves as a countermelody to the text sung in the same section. A march is typically in duple meter and is music fitting of people to step to.
The rapid, slight lowering in pitch and retunigng of a single note in music. It is used toleand more expressive quality to a musical phrase, and even to a single note of a phrase. This is often used in modern strings performances, but in Beethoven’s day the sound of gut strings were leaner and lacked the constant vibrato of modern strings
pink half-boots
One of the attributes of Estelle Dubeuf who Berlioz loved as a youth. Although he forgot her hair color he remembered her little pink boots. He wrote a songa bout her on a text from Florian’s Estelle et Nemorin and ended up using its melody for the beginning of Symphonie Fantastique
the sun god adn Orfeo’s father. In L’Orfeo he represents not only musi but balance in all things. Apollo appears in the music to help Orfeo pass Caronte in act III. He also could have appeared at the end of the work as he brought Orfeo with him to heaven and told him not to worry about Euridice because he would be with her forever. There is a certain otherwordly sinfonia that represents Apollo
Also known as an air, it is a song in an opera or oratorio as opposed to recitative, which is a musical representation of speech. An aria also contains distinct melodic elements. An exmaple is Evry Valley.
A large woodwind instrument with a low range. A bassoon plays a very high pitch in the famous initial melody in Rites of SPring , which many thought was impossible to play
Dies Irae
Played in Movement 5 of Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique. It is a funeral march because the love struck artist is dead. Whole notes are played to represent the death which is a Berlioz trick. The two instruments that play this are the serpent and the ophicleide.
E flat Clarinet
Known as one of the ugliest sounding instruments, It was used form military purposes and bERLIOZ USES ONE IN TEH MARCH DURING THE T5h movement of Symphanie fantastique
E flat Clarinet
Known as one of the ugliest sounding instruments, It was used form military purposes and bERLIOZ USES ONE IN TEH MARCH DURING THE T5h movement of Symphanie fantastique
The woman who Orfeo loves. She dies in Act 2 and is taken to the underworld. orfeo attempts to rescure her through his song. Pluto allows Euridice to return as long as Orfeo does not look back when leaving the underworld. He does and she is lost. She was played by a soprano castrato named Girolamo Bacchini.
The street in Dublin where the Music Hall wa that hosted the premier of Messiah. Since the the Music Hall has been knocked down and only a sign is left to commemorate it.
Francois Habeneck
The paramount musical authority in Paris because he conducted both the Opera and Conservatorie orchestras. He conducted the premier of Symphonie Fantastique. He was the first person to conduct using a violin bow rather than the large baton of the time beater. Up until that time the orchestra and the time beater faced the stage with the time beater nearest to the stage. This established communication through the sound the baton makes when it struck on the floor of the pit. He was an expressive conductor.