French word for ornaments, or embellishments
French word for harpsichord; the favorite chamber keyboard instrument in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries
a term used in the rondo form of the 17th and 18th centuries to indicate an intermediate section (episode) distinctly different from the refrain
notes inegales
a succession of equal notes moving rapidly up or down the scale are played somewhat unequally, such as “long-short, longshort”
term used by Couperin to designate a group of pieces loosely associated by feeling and key; similar to the Baroque era dance suite
practice in which a dotted note is made longer than written, while its complementary short note(s) is made shorter
term used to describe the decorative arts and the music of mid eighteenth-century France, with all their lightness, grace and highly ornate surfaces
refrain (A) set against contrasting material (B, C, or D) to create a pattern such as ABACA, ABACABA, or even ABACADA; usually playful, exuberant mood
style brise
discontinuous texture in which chords are broken apart and notes enter one by one; such a style is inherent in lute music
an instrumental piece commemorating someone’s death
unmeasured prelude
an opening piece without specific indications for rhythmic duration or metrical organization
Denis Gaultier
the leading and most famous17th c. French lutenist; one of first composers to use the genre known as a “tombeau”
Francois Couperin
Baroque composer/harpsichordist associated with court of Louis XIV; developed genre known as “ordre’; treatise explaining Baroque ornamentation
Jean Philippe Rameau
early 18th c. composer/theorist who codified the new Baroque era compositional practices known today as “functional tonal harmony”
a male performer who sings in the alto or soprano range in falsetto voice
horn fifths
characteristic musical figure assigned to horns in which the instruments progress through 6ths, 5ths, and 3rds, sometimes ornamenting along the way
opera seria
heroic, fully sung Italian opera that dominated the stage at the courts of Europe during the eighteenth century
pastoral aria
slow-tempo aria employing parallel thirds in step-wise motion, lilting compound meter, slow harmonic change and many subdominant chords
Royal Academy of Music
Handel’s London opera company started in 1719; a publicly held stock company, its principal investor being the king
Georg Frideric Handel
late Baroque German composer; learned Italian opera style while studying in Italy; associated with and employed primarily in London
Bach Work List; an identifying system for the works of Johann Sebastian Bach
in a fugue, a unit of thematically distinctive material that serves as a counterpoint to the subject
in a fugue, a section full of modulation and free counterpoint that is based on motives derived from the subject
equal temperment
division of the octave into twelve equal half-steps, each with the ratio of approximately 18:17; first advocated by some musicians in the early 16th c.
in a fugue, an opening section in which each voice presents the subject in turn
invertible counterpoint
written so that the vertical position of two or more voices can be switched without violating the rules of counterpoint or creating undue dissonance
indication that a composer has written a specific part for an instrument and intends it to be played as written
term used by J.S. Bach as a synonym for a dance suite
pedal point
on the organ, a sustained or continually repeated pitch, usually placed in the bass and sounding while the harmonies change around it
Picardy third
a shift from minor to major in the final chord of a piece
each group of similar sounding pipes in an organ
a small wooden knob on an organ that activates a rank of pipes when pulled out
in a fugue, the theme
taking the primary musical idea and “spinning” it out in a seemingly endless melodic strand with uniform rhythmand often deceptive cadences
accompanied recitative
a recitative that features a full orchestral accompaniment; it appears occasionally in the sacred vocal music of Bach
colla parte
technique in which all the instrumental parts double the vocal lines
collegium musicum
association of musicians in eighteenth-century Germany, consisting usually of university students, who came together voluntarily to play the latest music
a large-scale oratorio-like musical depiction of Christ’s crucifixion as recorded in the Gospels
violino piccolo
a small violin usually tuned a minor third higher than the normal violin
chorale cantata
genre of sacred vocal music that employs the text and tune of a pre-existing Lutheran chorale in all or several of its movements
Johann Sebastian Bach
late Baroque German composer; worked and lived exclusively in several central German cities; music “forgotten” for more than 75 years