Gregorian Chant – “Kyrie”


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-Three statements sung 3 times, great symbolism in the repetition scheme: the number three represented the trinity, and 3 x 3 was considered absolute perfection
-Also 3 phases of music, whole piece begins and ends on g (g mode)



Gregorian Chant Hymn – “Pange Lingua”

St. Thomas Aquinas


-Strophic, which means that all four stanzas are sung to the same music
-each stanza has 6 lines and they seem to fall in pairs
-chant is in the E (Phrygian) mode, but the only line to end on the E is the last one, which gives the music a sense of continuity until the end
-almost entirely syllabic and the text urges praise for the miracle of Christ’s birth and death

Trobaritz Song – “A Chanter”


The Countess of Dia 


-sung from a woman’s perspective
– “courtly love”

Secular song – “Fas et Nefas”


Carmina Burana


-monophonic texture with drone, some melody repetition
-sung while walking, walking through life with 2 companions “doing right” & “doing wrong”

Notre Dame Organum – “Viderunt”


Medieval – Gothic


-polyphony-2 or more lines sung at same time

-tropes: elaboration on older model

-4 independent voices, monophonic & polyphonic sections

-original chant embedded


Secular Song (rondeau) – “Doulz Viaire” 



Medieval – Gothic

-a type of poem known as a rondeau
-several places where the music moves in duple meter, bar lines were not used so the meter could be much more flexible
-many of the notes are chromatic
-voice accompanied by a recorder below the voice and a lute above.
-carefully constructed polyphony

Secular Song (balata) – “gram piant”



Medieval Gothic

-two voices and one instrument, the lute binds the two voices together as they sing in harmony
-single stanza of the poem laments the pain of love
-there is a refrain, the two lines of the refrain are sung at the beginning and repeated at the end
-the same ending adds to the feeling of unity and repose

“Kyrie” from “Misse Pange Lingua” 



-paired imitation: one pair of voices begins the imitation and another pair answers
-overlapping candences: next group of voices begins just as the first group comes to a cadence, allowing the forward motion to continue
-the first section is based on the music of the first and second line of the hymn, the “christe” section is based on the third and fourth lines of the hymn, the final “kyrie” section on the fifth and sixth lines


G. Grabrieli, “Canzona” 


-favored in Venice based on french secular songs
-based on vocal music with smooth melodic line and smooth rhythms
-begins with “long-short-short” rhythmic patterns
-employs imitative counterpoint with brief moments where everyone plays in synchronization (in a “chordal” way)
-employs “antiphonal” effects : rapid exchanges between groups of instruments arranged in different spaces in the church. 

Madrigal – “As Vesta Was”



-In word painting, the music expresses or depict things referred to in the words of a song.
-the words are a mythological sketch, into which Elizabeth the virgin Queen is fit (Diana was a virgin goddess)
-type of secular song called a madrigal
-madrigals can be about
1) courtly love
2) “classical”: referring to Greek and Roman gods or mythological figures – desire to revive and emulate the ancient classical world. This followed a general tendency during the Renaissance to do the same in other arts