originally negative connotation, later came to describe time period
predominant emotion of a text or musical work
Gioseffo Zarlino
said polyphony often made text hard to understand
Primera Practica
used to describe old rennaisance style, most often linked to polyphony
seconda practica
linked most often with monody, idea of text before music
composer of madrigals, dramatic works, and sacred works
Francesca Caccini
composer from the florentine camerata, known for madrigals, operas, and some sacred works
composer that’s a part of the florentine camerata, known for dramatic works, madrigals, and sacred music
solo voice and basso continuo
basso continuo
written out bassline with harmonies to be realized above it, can include multiple instruments or just one with chordal abilities
musical idea that returns multiple times later in the piece
figured bass
harmonies (numbers) above the basso continuo

opera by monteverdi about orpheus and trip to the underworld

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uses strong dissonances and switching meter and supports text with music 

Cruda Amarilli

madrigal by Monteverdi

highly controversial because of seconda practica used

uses uncommon dissonanaces and violates basic counterpoint rules 

Giovanni Artusi
Criticized Monteverdi for Cruda Amarilli
ground bass
short repeated phrase in the lowest voice, shares no thematic material with upper voices, but provides constant movement
genere concitato

agitated or warlike mood developed by Momnteverdi

used first in Tradimento


small aria or song

example: tradimento by Strozzi 

recitative: secco and accompanied

basically speak singing, used to get through text while still singing

secco= no orchestra


opposite of recitative, completely sung piece in a dramatic work
plays with both vocal and instrumental numbers, Purcell wrote many works in this genre
much like opera except without set or staging, most are sacred, but some can be secular
Giacomo Carissimi

wrote Jephte a very early popular oratorio

about man who offers sacrifice to win a battle 


composed by Giacomo Carissimi

about a man who offers to sacrifice the first thing he sees after a battle as long as he wins, ends up being his daughter 

air de cour
french secular song, secular, solo voice and lute
Madrigal Comedy

cycles of madrigals connected by a dramatic theme

L’incoronazione di Poppea
mix of serious and comedic opera for the general public, less set and lower cost and drama was very humanistic
Heinrich Schutz
principle composer after JS Bach, composed first german opera and believed in a firm understanding of counterpoint to write good music
Saul, was verfolgst du mich

written by Schutz

polyphonic motet, but uses a lot of seconda practica techniques;

Henry Purcell
English composer, wrote dido and aeneas
Dido and Aeneas

written by purcell

about a man who is traveling and meets a women, they fall in love but he is tricked into leaving her and she then comits suicide;

a work whose parts are written by different composers, first opera in England was of this genre

like the Florentine Intermedi

music played/sung in between acts of a play;

Comedie ballet
mixture of spoken text and dance, created by Lully and was the precursor to opera in france
Tragedie en lyrique

first accepted opera in france with

open to public but performed in a court

started by Lully

consists of these parts: french overature, prologue which commented on the court and flattered the king, five acts of all sung drama, and interludes which shows dancing and choral singing;

french overature
slow beginning with dotted rhythms changing into a fast imitative section
Jean- Baptiste Lully
main writer opera in France, basically started opera here by slowly introducing it
Opera Seria

tragic/serious opera

stories always came from classical antiquity;

da capo aria
ABA form, performer sings two sections, then goes back to sing the first again
Jean Phillipe Rameau
successor to Lully with French opera, although started as keyboardist and theorist
Pietro Metastasio
Main librettist for opera seria, over 700 librettos
castrated tenors used as heroes in operas
George Frideric Handel

composer, wrote operas, oratorios, sacred music, orchestral music, and keyboard and chamber music

Beggar’s Opera
written by John Gay, dialogue is spoken not sung and heroes of the show are common criminals not mythical figures or historical heroes
ballad opera
opera in england featuring contemporary music and spoken not sung dialogue
an italian sacred vocal work ranging from solo and basso continuo to solo, chorus, and orchestra
Goldberg Variations
set of variations written by JS Bach all written on a single idea, slowly the original idea is hidden more and more
JS Bach

lived in three different places in his life, which corresponded to three different styles of works

wrote cantatas, mass, motets, chamber music, orchestral music, organ, harpischord, canons and fugues, basically everything

 he was also an accomplished keyboard/organist

Jesu der du meine Seele

cantata by JS Bach

uses ostinato, chorale, ritornello, and motet

very good piece of music considering wrote another the week before and week after 

ensemble in the concerto grosso
Concerto Grosso

a work with a soloist (concertino) and an ensemble (ripieno) 

an instrumental piece
trio sonata

three notated parts (could be more instrumentalists)

two high voices and one low

sonata da camera
type of sonata of dance suites
sonata da chiesa
sonata type for the liturgy
Antonio Vivaldi
over 400 concertos, 46 operas, and many sacred works, mostly known for concertos
ripieno concerto
large ensemble concerto with no soloist
solo concerto
concerto grosso with a soloist and ensemble
notes ingales
french tradition of equal and unequal note lengths despite written equally, much like modern jazz
type of dance in a suite, french for "German" duple meter moderate tempo
fast triple meter dance from a suite
dance in 4/4 or 2/2, phrases begin in the middle of the bar
compound meter dance piece from a suite
3/4 dance usually for two people, Lully used this in his French "operas" before it was used in suites by composers such as Bach
binary form quick dance style in three
slow 3/4 dance originating from Poland

similar to modern violin, but much sweeter tone 


recorder dominated over flute

oboe and bassoon became more popular as well


trumpets with no valves

trombone had a very mellow tone and used for it’s deep sound;

Keyboard Instruments

Clavichord: possible vibrato

harpsichord: two sets of keys

fortepiano: can change volume

organ: most versitile with the most sets of keys and possibilities;

means all, defines when ensemble plays in concertos
instrumental composition originally based on vocal models, but later were independent of any such models
keyboard piece that is freely constructed and typically features rapid passagework

freely composed work with improv

usually for lute or keyboard

eventually became associated with polyphonic works and fugues;

series of imitative entries usually based on a single theme, but can have more
theme of a fugue
secondary theme of a fugue
equal temperament
dividing an octave into 12 absolutely equal semitones
style brise
keyboard style using arpeggios to imitate guitar or lute
Well Tempered Clavier
fugue piece by Bach
Basso Ostinato

continuous bassline throughout a piece

Chaconne or Passacaglia: I,V,IV,V



Dance Suite

consists of two moderately fast movements (allemande and courante), then a slow movement (sarabande), and finally a fast triple meter (gigue)

other movements or different types were added/substituted at will;